I suppose that everyone has phobias of one kind or another. Some that are reasonable and healthy, and some slightly irrational. I have some fears that I don't even know are causing me stress until the danger is no longer there. For instance: When we lived in Japan there were always earthquake tremors and living as we did on the fifth floor, we would sway back and forth until it ended. I was also having dizzy spells at the time so I would have to look up and see whether the light fixtures were moving or if it was just me. Every morning when I woke up, I would wonder in the back of my mind if today would be the day for the "Big One." Almost subconsciously I would go through safety steps throughout the day, "Okay, in this subway station, where is the nearest escape," etc. I really wanted to have eye surgery because I didn't want to have my glasses smashed and be half blind. Although in retrospect did I really need to see to survive by drinking my own urine and witness the destruction all around me? (A guy in Taiwan really did sustain himself that way for two weeks and it haunts me). When we moved to New Hampshire it was like a weight I didn't even know I carried was gone! The relief was palpable as I realized how miniscule the likelihood of an earthquake was. It was something I knew I was thinking about, but didn't realize was causing me actual stress. The next one is: I suppose there is always the chance that I could be attacked at any given moment. I am completely unaware that I have this thought until winter strikes. Throughout this season I get in my car and think, "Good thing there isn't a maniac hiding in the back seat because it is much too cold." Or when I walk from my detached garage to my back door late at night I think, "What a relief that there is no one waiting to strike from the bushes because the temperature just isn't favorable for that kind of activity. You would have to be crazy to be doing that." As if a serial killer isn't crazy -- ha, ha, oh. I may just have to rethink my complacency here. This thought relates to all crime. I don't worry as much about someone trying to break in the house because they don't know how long it will take and it just isn't worth spending time outside. So yet another reason to be grateful for the cripplingly cold, mind-numbingly bitter, winter we are having. But, once again, normally I don't even realize that I am worried about this.
Right now it is 5˚, feels like -12˚ with the interminable wind. You know it has been a bad winter when... it is 17˚ and you think, "Hey, I don't need a coat, it is downright bearable out there."