This week has been a roller coaster of moments when I’ve hated everything and moments where I’ve laughed and rested in peace. I’m realizing more and more just how little control we have of our circumstances and how much control we have of our attitude.
Monday, work erupted. I was handed something big that had a deadline of today, and I got angry. I got angry at people who play games and drop things on you at the last possible minute. I got angry that my plan for my week was suddenly shot. I got angry that I am in a job where what others do or don’t do can affect my life in real ways. And oh, I was pissed. A dear friend called, not knowing how pissed I was, and she got an earful, so much so that I felt compelled to text her an apology after the call. But feeling the need for that apology didn’t soften my tone any. When I got home, Dave also got an earful. And as I did my background reading that night, I got more and more angry at the magnitude of what I had been handed. I went to bed livid.
Tuesday came, and I decided that I was going to have a good attitude – or at least a better attitude than I’d had the day before. I tackled the project just as focused as I could be for the whole day. I researched, and I wrote until I absolutely had to leave work. That meant neglecting other things that were calling for my attention, but I knew this project had a short fuse, so I forced myself to shut out the rest of the world as best as I could. I ended the work day having written the bulk of what I needed to write, but wrestling with a section that remained blank.
On Wednesday morning, I woke up before my alarm and made the decision to go into work in the wee hours of the morning to try to wrap up the first draft of my project. That meant skipping my usual morning strength class, but I knew my head would not be in the class even if I attended, so off to work I went. And that morning, I again remained determined to have a good attitude. I worked quietly in my office with no one around, and, by about ten in the morning, I had a draft. The section I had been struggling with came together, and I felt good really good about it. I circulated it to the people who needed to read it, and they felt good about it, so I got back to some of the things I had neglected the day before.
Today, I let myself go to my strength class. I put the finishing touches on my project and helped my team prepare for a big meeting and off we went. It was all fine. And after it was over, I worked on more things that I had pushed aside. I’m not entirely caught up, but I have made good progress.
All of that was the work stuff. Intermingled with it was other stuff – like the volunteer work I get to do that I love, and Dave cooking a nice meal for me, and twice getting in thirty minutes on the treadmill at the gym, and stopping at the nail place to clean up way outgrown nails, and going to a jazz concert put on by a bunch of middle and high school kids. Intermingled with all of that was even more stuff, like doing laundry (which Dave and I refer to as my “relaxing”), texting with a dear friend who I haven’t seen in too long, having a quick lunch with one of my best friends, getting invited to spend time with the most adorable goddaughter on the planet, having an unexpectedly sweet conversation with an old friend who happened to be behind me in line at a salad shop, and receiving a sneak peek at wedding photos of some friends and their precious dogs.
It has been a busy week, but it has not a bad week. And it most certainly would have been had I stayed where my head was Monday night. On Monday night, I went to bed furious, the next I was anxious, the third I was exhausted and tonight? Tonight I’m just grateful. I’m grateful for my job, for Dave, for my friends, for my health, for my home, for my community, and for the life I get to live.
Looking back on it, I kind of feel like I kicked ass this week. And while I’d prefer not to have a repeat of this experience any time soon, I’m feeling pretty darn proud of myself for recovering after a terrible Monday.
I need to remind myself of this week the next time things get overwhelming. Things are not always going to be smooth or easy. But I will get through whatever I am faced with, big or small. And if I can keep a cool head, I might do more than get through it. I might kick some ass.