The Anchor

Someone has to keep it together when everyone else is falling apart. Usually, it’s me. The world around me dissolves into a panic and I do my best to ignore the whole production. I don’t ignore the problem. That I’ll be attempting to resolve while everyone else is still in shock it even happened.

When others around me realize I’m not in a panic something magical happens. They compose themselves almost immediately. First, they have to stop panicking enough to look around and realize what other people are doing. It does, however, pull everyone back into a state of calm much sooner than they would find it themselves.

At home, this works the other way as well. If I do get upset, even a little, it rubs off on everyone around me. If I get angry, suddenly the whole house feels broody. The toddler becomes a grouch and my husband sulks as if he were the one wronged even if he has no idea why I’m in the mood I’m in. Having mood swings takes on a whole new meaning when the whole household follows along.

I miss being able to be upset or angry for days at a time with no consequences. Now, if I do I feel guilty. Not only am I wallowing in misery but my son and husband seemed forced by some unseen force to do the same. I never remember having this dynamic growing up. Maybe it’s because we just weren’t as close then as the three of us are now.

I guess I don’t mind. After all, the benefits of being a close-knit family certainly outweigh the rest. It still feels strange from time to time. Maybe one of these days I’ll get used to it. After all, our son is only two. There’s plenty of time to adjust.


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