I got this from an excellent little indie movie called Butter. The movie is about butter carving and a young girl who wants to enter a butter carving contest. She is afraid to go into the building and sign up but her foster father asks, “What is the worst thing that can happen?”
They go back and forth discussing earthquakes, zombi apocalypse, ceiling collapse and other fantastical and cataclysmic events. But really what is the worst thing that can happen? They don’t let her sign up for the contest!
I come from a family that imagines the worst in those kind of terms. If someone is ten minutes late, I have pictured the car wreck and funeral. If a friend does not call for two weeks, she probably hates me for something I did not even know I did. I am not making this up. I go immediately to that end of the world scenario.
The upside of this obsession is that I am really, really happy when none of this drama turns out to be true.
But generally, what is the worst that can happen? Someone says no. I don’t get what I thought I really wanted. And the world goes on as I move on to the next (imaginary) disaster.