This summer, I chose to go back to college. Wonderful right? Feeling great about myself, finally pursuing my degree. Yes, until I realized that I was taking FOUR three credit courses in a summer-timed schedule. That means that each class requires about 3-4 weeks of work in one week. So, yeah.
Thankfully, two of them are over and I aced them with A’s. Feeling very accomplished and catching up on some sleep and getting back to exercising/time for myself etc. I still have two courses to finish this semester, but I have them under control and can make more time for them.
During the crazy time, there were a few very stressful things that happened that made me think twice about continuing. I came very close to pushing the withdrawal button, but I didn’t. While I was the recipient of occurrences that were unfair at the time, I had to work extra hard to deal with the classes while trying to process the extrinsic stress. I must be in somewhat of a better place dealing with my anxiety so that I was able to do this, even if only on a minimalistic level to survive.
Anxiety doesn’t wait until you’re finished a quiz, exam or paper to rear its ugly head. It comes from many different places, even those you love, and that’s hard to take. You want to scream, “Do you have ANY IDEA how hard it is for me to do what I’m doing and then you add to it?!!” and sometimes you do, but other times it’s just so obvious, that if they don’t see it, well then perhaps they need to do their own soul-searching.
I don’t want a pity party or to be some martyr for anxiety and taking a few classes, but I think it’s truly important to take a look at what my priorities are in life and how I handle the incoming bad stuff. It’s been years of looking for solutions about how to do just that, so I’d certainly love to know how others handled it, or ways that didn’t work even.
I think that for so many years, I’ve been through so much crap and chosen so poorly in many situations, that perhaps I feel I deserve what I get based on those poor choices. However, there’s an emerging, learning part of me that is starting to get sick and tired of not expecting better for myself and allowing other situations to drag me down and make me feel like it’s not enough. Hell, I had enough of that BS in my abusive marriage. Maybe that’s why I get so mad when people walk on me and take advantage of my love and/or friendship with them? “She’s such a forgiving person…she’ll let it go again” or some other aspect of my relenting personality.
There is only so much that I will take before I break and I refuse to allow stress or anxiety to win this time. Will it still be there? Sure it will. It always seems to be there, simmering under the surface, waiting for just the right moment to strike, when I’m facing an important deadline or something imperative. It’s difficult to realize that coping with incoming stressors are dependent upon your reaction. Realizing that you can’t help the other person make the changes they need to make in their lives will stop the cycle of wearing you down and allow you to live your life for yourself, in each moment. It takes an exorbitant amount of time to come to this realization, but when it hits you, it’s like a smack in the face. HELLO! It IS all about you and always has been!
I’m not sure how many times I’ve read the above quote, but the meaning deepens and morphs for me constantly. Others may have turned their back on me and in the past I’ve turned away from myself, but no more.