We’ve been on vacay this week. All 5 of us traveled to warmer weather and {mostly} sunnier skies. It was deeeelightful. On day 4, my five year old declared that he wanted to climb a mountain. So, my husband did some digging and found a hike that might be well-suited for a 5, 3, and 1 year old and we found ourselves at Papago Park in Phoenix. But really, the mountain was not exactly stroller-compliant. And so the older boys and I trekked up the rock formation while my husband pushed the babe around in the stroller down below. We came to a hole, an area designated for looking out, and my heart began to race. Because things like that – taking my kids up to a hole in a rock formation looking out into the wild blue yonder without a single guardrail in place – things like that, make me nervous.

And this, well, this would not surprise my husband one bit. Because when it comes to the two of us, he is the even keel to my nervous Nelly. I will often say, he sees a playground, I see 456 ways we could end up at Urgent Care. I am the one who is often concerned about the temperature of food, the temperature of bath water, the temperature of the outdoors. I am the one who is nervous about Legos on the floor or knives in the dishwasher. I am the one who would think about children falling from a rock formation. And all those concerns, all that worry, wellll – even the thought that I harbor so many more than my husband, well, that gives my anxiety.

But after discussing this with several different girlfriends lately, I am feeling more and more like I am not alone. Which, thankfully, has me feeling a little less batshit crazy. A little.

But truly. I find myself wondering, is anxiety just part of being a mama? If I had a penis, would I be less neurotic?

Here’s the list of things that I think my husband worries about:

– Is my wife happy

Here’s the list of the things I worry about:

– Do the kids know we love them
– Is the school lunch balance paid
– Do we have fruit for breakfast
– The whole Charlie Hebdo/Paris situation
– Our parents’ health
– Will I lose my boys when they find a mate
– What’s for dinner this week
– My childrens’ socks have holes in them
– My middle child’s speech
– My oldest child’s confidence
– My baby’s current cough
– Should I be staying home or working
– Ebola
– School shootings
– People I never sent wedding gifts to
– Should I keep blogging
– Am I a good enough friend
– Is my phone charger in the car
– Will my kid bump his head on that corner and gash it open
– Am I staying within our family budget
– When should I wean my baby
– Should we move to a bigger house
– What is on the floor that my baby could choke on
– What is with measles coming back
– Is my husband happy with our marriage
– Am I a good friend
– Is my house clean
– Do I play with my kids enough
– Do I play with my kids too much
– Are we doing this parenting thing right
– Will the baby get a good nap
– Did the kids watch too much TV yesterday
– Am I Vitamin D deficient
– Will my kids be made fun of because of the things that make them different
– Will my kids make fun of other kids because of their differences
– Am I yelling too much
– Am I not parenting enough
– Do I snuggle enough
– Am I savoring the moments
– Am I coddling my children
– Should I buy all organic food
– Does organic food matter
– Will my oldest be shorter than his brother and will that bother him
– Will my child slip on the rocks and fall
– Will my child jump into the pool without me around
– How can I get my kids to eat more foods
– Will my kids know not to go with strangers
– Is my baby being really quiet or is something wrong with the monitor
– Am I having enough sex
– What is BHT
– Is my child wearing enough clothing for the weather
– Is it going to rain today
– Do I have enough extra diapers in the diaper bag
– Will my baby fall asleep in the car

I mean… I could go on and on. But I won’t. But geeze louise, why do mama’s take the hit when it comes to the crazy train parts of parenting? Because when I look at it all rationally I know that 50% of that doesn’t really matter or won’t happen. And 50% of it is far beyond our control. And 100% of it is not worth the worry, right? That’s what you non-worry warts are thinking, right? Because worrying has never solved any problems. And as Jewel says, “worry is wasteful and useless in times like these.” And if Jewel says it then it has to be true.

It’s not as though I am at a point where my anxiety affects my ability to live my life. I climbed the rock, people. And I still drive a car. And let my children out into the world without bubble suits. But it still consumes a fair amount of my brain space on the regular. And I wonder, what might I use that space for instead? Sports trivia? Periodic table knowledge? The entire history of rock? The possibilities are endless, really.

My husband often says I don’t know how you walk around with that thing in reference to the thoughts that bumble around in my brain. And to that I say, No worries, dude. No worries. 

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Ashli Brehm

Ashli Brehm = Thirtysomething. Nebraska gal. Life blogger. Husker fan. Creative writer. Phi Mu sister. Breast cancer survivor. Boymom. Premie carrier. Happy wife. Gilmore Girls fanatic. Amos Lee listener. Coffee & La Croix drinker. Sarcasm user. Jesus follower. Slipper wearer. Funlover. Candle smeller. Yoga doer. Pinterest failer. Anne Lamott reader. Tribe member. Goodness believer. Life enthusiast. Follow me at http://babyonthebrehm.com/