Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Me. Only better.

Last week, I reached a critical mass of stress and anxiety in my head, muscles, nerves, mind...

I started complaining about any and everything to any and everyone who was within earshot.  And, when I was by myself, that didn't stop me.  I complained to myself!  Why why why? I whined.  Why do I have to work so many jobs to make ends meet?  Why have I not lost more weight after an entire summer of strenuous workouts?  Why am I not further on this chapter of my dissertation?  Why do I have to pay tuition even though I'm done with coursework?  Why is our house such a mess?  Why did my professor let me down and forget the details we've discussed four times in twelve weeks?  How could she?  How could I?  How could they?  Why me?


And then...

...when I had quieted my mind long enough to hear myself and register the words I was saying...

I felt so ashamed and unworthy of the blessings in my life.

  • I was complaining about having too many jobs while millions of people have none.
  • I was complaining about my weight while millions have no food to sustain their bodies.
  • I was complaining about working out all summer and seeing minimal results while millions are sick, handicapped, arthritic, or unable to move their limbs freely.
  • I was complaining about my dissertation while millions go uneducated and cannot read or write, much less engage in the privilege of scholarly research.
  • I was complaining about housework and clutter while millions are homeless.

Quite simply, I had made myself mentally sick.  And, quite honestly, I was disappointed in my words, actions, and mindset.  Once the scales fell from my eyes, I sat down and--instead of complaining--I gave myself a stern reprimand.

I have a roof over my head, food in my stomach, clothes on my back, books on my shelves (and, yes, my floors), a candidacy in doctoral studies, and an excess of employment for the number of available hours in each day.

So, I propose a movement away from this narcissistic feeling of entitlement.  Out with sickness, out with disappointment, out with inadequacy.  In with action.  In with energy.  In with beauty.


Sharone said...

This is maybe my favorite thing you've written. :) These are good things to remember, but easy things to forget.

I'm joining you today in being grateful instead of gripe-y. :)

Rita Gehman said...

I actually propose keeping the narcissism and ditching the negativity.

We are all so much in control of our own lives, and we create every thing in it and create ourselves how we would like to be. If that was not so, my disease would have killed me at age two instead of sinking into complete remission by age twelve. You would barely have achieved a bachelor's degree and gone no further. You certainly would not be the sweet, kind and hugely compassionate person we all know you to be.

Nobody can achieve these things without choice. I've done the whole "workout without results" thing, and the truth is, when I do that, I know that any extraneous fat on my body is actually a physical manifestation of emotions.

People control instead of create. The more I control, the less clout and influence I am able to use in manifestation of my choices.

My body holding onto extraneous fat, just like my dizzying inability to grasp simple concepts sometimes, is me trying to control the situation, rather than realizing that I ALREADY HAVE control. That all I need to do now is decide how I really want things, and to create.