Scary Scenarios

Scary Scenarios

A Story by Shelley Warner

I dedicate this story to people who have anxious thoughts.


I wake up in the morning and can’t get out of bed. My body won’t move. I call out to Zach, my teenage grandson who lives with me. “Help, I’m paralyzed!” He makes the three calls I’ve told him to if there’s ever an emergency.  He calls 911. Then he calls my daughter. Then he calls my boyfriend, John. I don’t know what happens next because it is a “daymare”, a scary scenario that suddenly pops into my mind.

I’m driving from Camas, Washington to see John in Mossyrock, Washington, a pleasant mountain town almost two hours away. Traffic is flowing smoothly on I 5; but my grandson suggests that my car could break down, forcing me to pull off the road.

 “Don’t bring up scary scenarios!” I reply. “I’m good at thinking them up myself. Here’s a good one: I’m driving when I suddenly�"with no explanation�"go blind.”

“Good thing I can drive,” he answers. (He’s only thirteen but successfully drove his stepdad’s car one day last year in their Mountain Home, Idaho neighborhood.) “I’d grab the wheel and steer us to the side of the highway.”

“Well that’s comforting,” I suggest.

I also imagine arriving at John’s. He doesn’t answer the door. Somehow I get inside and find him passed away in his easy chair. But actually, John meets me outside and walks me to his front door. He points to a lock box. “Just in case you ever need to get in my house,” he says.

“Seriously?” I answer. “I just had a scary scenario pop in my mind about something happening to you. What’s your password?”

“I can’t tell anyone. If you ever need it, just call Tom (John’s son-in-law and cabin buddy�"they work on a lot of projects together at Tom’s mountain cabin)."

Anyway, John never did pass away in his chair.

Life has enough real challenges without new and imagined ones. I remember a quote in the Bible:

“Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof (Matthew 6:34, King James Version).”

Or a more modern version:

“Each day has enough trouble of its own (Matthew 6:34 New International Version).”

It’s true that life has troubles of its own and what I’ve learned is that I can get through them. I think that my scary scenarios represent what makes me anxious. Aging makes me feel a little anxious. Driving makes me feel a little anxious. Loving someone makes me feel a little anxious. It’s OK to have anxious feelings. I know that emotions come and go.

So scary scenarios don’t scare me. They are just startling thoughts that pop into my mind. And while life does have troubles, it also has joys. 

But I’m thankful that none of my scary scenarios have ever happened.

© 2023 Shelley Warner

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I relate...I over imagine and often prepare for the worst...when that does not happen...what relief.

Posted 10 Months Ago

Shelley Warner

10 Months Ago

Thanks for reading Jacob. I figured I wasn't the only one.

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Added on June 11, 2023
Last Updated on June 11, 2023


Shelley Warner
Shelley Warner

Camas, WA

I like to write about my life. Sounds a little narcissistic, right? But it's the challenges, the griefs, the joys, the faith struggles, and the enjoyment of nature that inspires me. I have published t.. more..