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7.24.22 Smoke Detector

Updated: Oct 15, 2022

They say anxiety is like living with a broken smoke detector inside your brain. The alarm is constantly going off for no reason. It's annoying but eventually you can learn to live with it.

What's ironic is that I have a faulty detector at home. Every time I fry an egg or bake a cake, the smoke detector shrieks that there is danger, get out! And eventually, I've come to ignore it. (Or, if it gets too much, I'll pull out the ladder and turn the alarm off.) One particularly lazy day, while the alarm was blaring, I got creative and used the top of the broom to push the "off" button. For some reason, the detector just kept blaring no matter how many times I pushed the button. After about a dozen failed attempts, I went across the kitchen to open a window in hope that it would stop the noise. As I passed the oven, I noticed that it was ENGULFED in flames. There was thick black smoke, a real fire - real danger and I really needed to get out this time!

When I retold this tale to my therapist, she was not amused. I asked her, what if the danger is real - clearly sometimes the beeping signalizes danger. I was told to trust my instinct, that I would just know. I didn't feel very confident in that. When there was a real fire, I just ignored it and assumed it was just annoying beeping. How am I supposed to live with the noise if sometimes it really is danger?

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