I only need to say two words and you’ll understand:
Right!? Yes. But I’m talking seriously overdue library books – 3 years overdue. They have made two moves with me, and I was determined they would not make a third, into my Home Sweet Home.
You know how it is. The books were overdue and I kept putting off their return because I would forget, or be too depressed to make the effort, or procrastinate, and procrastinate, and procrastinate. Eventually, as more time went by, it became impossible to return them. Because they were soooo late. Ashamed and distraught, I began catastrophizing the event:
– there was a warrant out for my arrest
– I’d been summons and my ex didn’t tell me
– I’d have to pay a fine equivalent to the replacement value of the books
– I would be banned forever from the library and forced to wear a Scarlet Letter publicly shaming my negligent behaviour
It took courage yesterday, phoning to enquire if they had an upcoming “Amnesty Week”. They didn’t and my heart dropped into my ankles. I confessed my crime and surprisingly, it wasn’t a problem. The kind librarian explained I would only be charged a maximum fee totalling R12, and then she encouraged me to continue using the library.
What!! I’m not banned? I don’t have an outstanding arrest warrant? I don’t have a criminal record? All these years I’ve worried myself sick, hidden under the duvet, eaten alive by fear and guilt. I anticipated the worst. So I guess the moral of the story is, and always will be, our fears are often far bigger in our minds than they are in reality.
(And I get to tick this off my list of Things To Do. Since it was a big one, I’m due a reward for my efforts. So I’m off for a chocolate milkshake on Sunday)