The S.T.U.C.K. Method

Five Simple Steps to Emotional Well-Being

STUCK on Thinking the Worst


Last night my husband and daughter, along with a few other adults and teenagers, went to see the play, The Wave.

the waveThe play is based on an extraordinary novel, that “explores the nature of fascim and the appeal of mass movements through the true-life story of a California high school which began an experiment in the 1960’s that rapidly ran out of control.”

I saw the movie when I was in high school.

And as my daughter is beginning to learn about and read Holocaust literature on her own, I very much wanted her to see this play.

Apparently, it was amazing.

Yet, I didn’t hear that from my daughter.

Because my husband arrived home solo after the show.

Apparently, since the group traveled in two cars, my husband decided to take advantage of being off of the kibbutz to go food shopping when the play was over.

Not wanting to go food shopping, my daughter chose to go with the rest of the group in order to get home right away.

But, she didn’t.

“Where’s Ayalah?”, I asked my husband as he entered the house with the groceries.

“I don’t know.  What? She’s not home yet?  She should have been home over an hour ago,” he said.

Not the kind of news any parent wants to hear.

Where could they be?

I bet they just stopped for a bit to eat, I thought to myself.

Simple answer.

That’s all it could have been.


So, I called my daughter just to check in.

No answer.

I called the other adults in the group.

No answers.

I sent one text.

No answer.

I called one of the spouses waiting at home.

Who knew nothing about what was going on.

And then I panicked.

More than that, I got stuck.

On thinking the worst.

I quickly stepped outside so as not to frighten the rest of my family.

With my “stuck” thoughts.

A horrific car accident.

Israel is notoriously known for its high rate of fatal car accidents.

I’m sure that’s what it is.

That’s why no one is answering the phone.

They’re probably all….


Wouldn’t it be on the news?

Wouldn’t have someone contacted us?

And, of course, in light of the recent abominable news coming from Jerusalem, I got stuck on…

Worse than the worst.

A terrorist attack.

Just outside the theater.


It can’t be!!!!

And just as I was preparing myself for the worst of the worst, preparing myself to have to find the light within the darkness as so many are having to do during these difficult times, preparing myself for how to move on….,

I heard footsteps running down the path towards our house.

“Ayalah?” I called out.

“Yeah, hi mom.”

“I called you!!! You didn’t answer!!!!”

“Yeah, I just got it now.  We stopped for pizza.”


With a deep exhalation, I closed my eyes.



So glad.

And the show?


So glad.

And so grateful a happy reality woke me up from my horrendous stuck thoughts.

And that I didn’t have to personally deal with the worst of the worst.

And instead can working on heeding the request of the 4 widows and orphans of the most recent terrorist attack, to set aside the day of Shabbat as a day of unconditional love, a day during which we will refrain from words of disagreement and division, from words of gossip and slander.

May it be Thy will.


Author: Shira Taylor Gura

Well-Being Coach, Podcast Host, Author of the award winning book, Getting unSTUCK: 5 Simple Steps to Emotional Well-Being.

3 thoughts on “STUCK on Thinking the Worst

  1. first of all. thank goodness for a happy ending. second of all, did I somehow possess your body last night? maybe I’m a bad influence on you. you’re normally the calm one!

    • Jen, funny that you commented as such. Yes, you were totally in my thoughts as I was going crazy! I was so close to calling you and then Ayalah showed up. 🙂

  2. Shir

    Mom and I just read your blog. We are grateful that everyone is ok.

    We are living in very troubling times. Or are we? As I continue to read and learn about our Jewish History I question myself if things will ever change .

    Our people have been attacked, exiled and worse for over 5000 years.

    As much as I pray to Hashem to promote peace and goodwill for our people I believe that it will not occur until the time that Moschiach arrives.

    Hashem has given us free will.

    All we can do is try our best to make the world a better place for all the people that live on our planet earth.

    Welcome to the world of being a loving and concerned parent

    I cannot tell you the restless nights Mom and I had worrying about nights Amy, Adam and yourself came home much later than we agreed you would all be home.

    As you continue to go down the road of parenting I will tell you the concerns never end for Bubbe’s and Pop Pop’s.

    All our love.

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