If you’ve never watched “real” Sesame Street, Telly Monster was a HUGE worrywort. He was always concerned about everything that could go wrong, no matter how irrational. Growing up my nickname was “Telly Monster” because we both had the same mantra, “What if…?”
For the better part of the past twenty-odd years I’ve been alive, I’ve been a worrier. If worrying were a college degree, I would have graduated with a 4.0 when I was ten-years-old. The worrying eventually gave way to pessimism. If I had a cold, I would just assume I was going to die and then when I lived, it was a great feeling.
It was a miserable existence and I didn’t even realize it. I was so caught up in my wallowing and complaining, I had no idea how terrible it felt to be a pessimist. I thought that wallowing made me happy (how that makes sense I have no idea)!
Then I got sick…and I stayed sick.
Yesterday, while talking to my counselor, I realized that I have become a happier more optimistic person. She asked me to describe myself in seven words and five of the seven were very positive and the other two ended up with a positive spin.
I have no idea when it happened but my thoughts, moods, and behaviors have shifted. I don’t want to get out of bed and go to class each day. I know if I stop now, I’ll never go back. I have horrible stomach pain on occasion and I respond with, “At least that endometriosis was good training!” The world has suddenly become this weird, shiny, smiley place and I have no idea how I got here. My mantra suddenly went from, “what if…” to “this too shall pass.”
Getting sick with this mystery illness is the best worst thing to ever happen to me.