Paranoia

Is it paranoid to think your daughter might be sold into human trafficking if she goes to the mall with a new friend? I’m not saying I really believed this would happen, but it crossed my mind. Several times.

When my kid were little, I didn’t let them wait alone at the bus stop. It just seems to be the perfect ambush place for a predator — same kid, same place, same time every day. My daughter now drives, and my son is so tall, no predator is going to mess with him. Ahh, what a relief!

The other day we were supposed to get a couple inches of snow. My husband never takes these things seriously, so I snuck out to his car after he went to bed and put a shovel and salt in the trunk, and a comforter, boots, snacks, and water in the front. If he goes into a snow bank, he can dig himself out. If he goes into a ditch and isn’t found for a while, he won’t be cold, thirsty, or hungry, and if he needs to get out and walk, he’ll have dry feet.

He thinks I’m really weird and annoying sometimes. But if he ever goes into a ditch, he’ll eat those words (along with the rescue peanuts). 

I come by my paranoia honestly. Every time my mom heard an ambulance, she worried it was whichever brother wasn’t home. (I was always home. I was geek.) And my dad was a cop, so I heard a lot of crime details that didn’t even reach the newspapers. When your nose is always in a book, people assume you aren’t listening. Plus Dad would sometimes show me police reports and say things like, “This is why you don’t hitchhike.”

So I always pee before I leave the house (so I don’t pee my pants in a car wreak). I never hang around the bathroom when I feel sick to my stomach (do you know how many people are found dead on toilets? Me neither, but Dad said it happens). I put the garage door down before I get out of the car (in case someone is lurking in the bushes). I look between the cars as I walk through a parking lot, and I lock the doors the second I’m in the car. I quickly unload the groceries from the van to the garage floor and close the door before I take stuff in the house. I think every hang-up phone call is someone trying to see if I’m home so they can rob me.

When my husband is gone at night, I actually sleep with a butcher knife and a large, heavy metal flashlight next to my bed. If I’m really nervous, I’ll put the knife under my pillow. (My husband once came to bed and pricked his hand when he slid it under my pillow. I hate when he does that, so I didn’t particularly mind.) I often sneak downstairs and check the cats. If they’re just chilling, I know no one is in the house; otherwise, they would be hiding under the furniture thinking, “Yeah, no one but humans around, that’s right, go on upstairs and say hi.”

There’s a new show on called “Doomsday Preppers.” I love this show. Each week, two or three families tell us how they think the sh** it going to hit the fan for civilization, and how they’re preparing for various disasters. Destruction of the energy grid, collapse of the food chain, pole shift, oil depletion, world-wide pandemic … the list goes on and on. What’s interesting is that I’m beginning to understand that if you prepare for the wrong thing, you might as well not have bothered, and you can’t prepare for everything. So why bother preparing for anything?

Still, I think a few canned goods in the basement might be a good idea.

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About alisaacarter

I am a writer of young adult novels, wife, mom of three, lover of animals, former magazine editor, reader of anything paranormal, and coffee fanatic.
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