The catfish survived! After minutes out of the water it was able to persist and not give up. The heron now seemed embarrassed and tried to maintain composure after this loss. I had to wonder about the stories that catfish told the others later that night.
Humans are very different than wildlife in the way we worry about the future. We generate all kinds of stressful concerns in our head (mortgages, relationships, jobs, etc.). These stressors trigger similar physiological responses in humans as in a wild animal escaping a sudden attack.
The problem is that humans often turn these into chronic stressors. It is thought that the human body is not equipped to handle these stresses for long periods of time. Our societal stressors seem to have evolved faster than our bodies have had time to adapt our physiological responses. Chronic stress leads to all kinds of disease in humans (digestive problems, heart disease, weakened immune systems, etc.).
Books on worry offer rules of thumb to counter this effect: Live in day tight compartments (i.e. only worry about today), Do not worry about tomorrow, since tomorrow may never happen, only worry about things you can affect, etc.
The catfish did not give up. It was able to survive this acute stressor event to swim off and live another day. My bet is that it does not worry all day long about being eaten by a monster bird.