Left my purse at home, I am at work.

Poverty Panic Pangs occurred. It wasn’t pretty.

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It’s a lovely, blue sky, crisp air winters day out today, the kind of day which is likely to put a spring in one’s step.

The only problem with this is that I went to work without my jacket.

You know, my green one, buttons up, mid length… that one.

My purse is in my jacket pocket, with my ID card for work and all my money and access to money, such as my bank cards and such.

This isn’t just a minor inconvenience.

It produces within me an attack of “poverty panic pangs”.

Poverty panic is when my mind races and my heart gallops and I start to over-plan contingency strategies and emergency escape routes and re-map my day to accommodate the new event.

It’s a bit overkill, to say the least.

So in my poverty panic, by the time I got to the staff entrance I’d already calculated that I didn’t have time to return home yet, that I had loose change which had been weighing down my handbag for weeks which I could use to “start the day right” with a bread roll from the café on work premises, and that I could turn to the food storage (I kid you not) in my desk drawer.  I keep sachet soups in a little box as a just in case of hunger or perhaps an exciting apocalypse.  I don’t know that I’d have enough time to boil the kettle in the event of a zombie apocalypse but they’re there as a back-up.  I hope the zombies don’t chew through the electrical wiring leaving me without H2O sufficient to make my meal.

I learned once that how you are responding to an adverse situation right now isn’t about what’s happening right now, but about how something similar happened ages ago and you responded a certain way and you are here to tell the tale, so when that “reminds me of a situation” thing happens in your brain, it goes to the draw marked “successful strategies” and pulls out your file and you respond exactly like you did before, even if that doesn’t work for this particular event, and it’ll keep trying until it either works or another problem arises or until you end up rocking back and forth in the corner!

Historically, when “my purse is empty” happened, I planned and schemed and wiggled my way through it, now every time it reoccurs or I feel like it is reoccurring, the same feelings arise and the same response is activated until I hit the “CALM DOWN, You’ve got soup in the drawer” button in my old noggin.

So all the bases are covered.

The car has petrol, the desk draw has lunch, my handbag has breakfast covered, security are nice and are happy to sign me in.

Now to tell my heart rate that the emergency is in hand.

If you need me, I’ll be the one where my fingers are typing but my head is meditating itself silly to restore equilibrium to this little soul of mine.

Author: Pollyanna Whyte

Single LDS Mormon Mum/Mom living in England. This is our blog on emotional health, fun, parenting, life, divorce, starting over, friends, family, church things, and budgeting. Stop by, tell us what you think, feel free to share (but credit the source please).

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