I’m a worrier by nature. For as long as I can remember I’ve been anxious about things such as fire, and plane crashes (though this one has pretty much disappeared), and a million other things. Over the years I’ve developed ways to assuage my worries, and sometimes my over-prepared nature has come in handy – I’m actually really great in a crisis because I’ve already played out all the outcomes in my head so all I do in the moment is act. So while I may check a campfire a couple of extra times to make sure it’s *really* out, my worrywart nature doesn’t usually affect my daily life. However, in the last few years I have noticed that somehow I’ve become a stress sponge. Unconsciously, I absorb the worries and stresses of others and make them my own. It’s beyond being empathetic, and it’s definitely not good for my health, but I don’t seem to realize that I’m doing it until too late.
This post got eaten. I’m going to blame the beaver at the cottage. Maybe he’s shy and didn’t want the notoriety that being on my blog would bring. I’m not sure why it got deleted but I’m trying to recreate it from memory.
I was at the cottage last weekend for my dad’s birthday weekend. It rained most of the weekend. On Sunday evening, during a break between rain storms I glanced out of a window at the lake and saw what I thought at first was a log floating in the lake. Upon closer inspection, however, the log moved! It was a beaver, swimming about 5′ out from shore! The beaver in question didn’t seem to care that there were people in the cottage, he swam around the bay and returned about 25 minutes later. (this time both Mum and Dad saw it – at first they thought i had just seen a log or something in the water). We tried to take some pictures which really do look like a log in the water due to the fact that beavers swim mostly underwater with just their nose sticking out at the front. It was a cool piece of Canadiana but I put it out of my head as one of those one-off things you see at the cottage.
Monday, Dad left early so he could make it to work relatively on time, leaving Mum and I to stay and clean up the cottage. Tidying the cottage is hot and sweaty work, mum can’t get down to the lake anymore, so she got the shower and I went for a swim. The air was cool and the lake was warmer than the air – which made it a very refreshing swim. I had been swimming for about 10 minutes, had taken a few dives off the raft and was swimming between the raft and the shore when I heard a noise that gave me pause. I looked towards the shore and there was the beaver again. They look a LOT bigger up close and personal! This thing was at least 2 feet long (not including the tail which looked huge!) and about 30 lbs. It raised its head out of the water a bit and wow are the beaver’s teeth prominent. It didn’t seem to care that I was in the water and kept on swimming. I, however, wasn’t taking any chances. I swam over to the dock (the beaver was swimming away from the dock) and got out of the lake as fast as I could. The fact that I got out on the dock demonstrates how nervous I was about the beaver – I never get out there – I use the beach because the dock has dock spiders and I really hate dock spiders! I have since read that beavers don’t attack humans, at least not in the water, but there’s a first time for everything right?