“Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster. For when you gaze long into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”– Friedrich Nietzsche
Often I feel overwhelmed, and I was trying to think what the opposite would be… it wouldn’t be underwhelmed. Underwhelmed is unimpressed, but overwhelmed is chaotic.
Merriam Webster says:
- to subject to incapacitating emotional or mental stress
2. to cover with a flood
I was surprised to read the second, I always heard and used inundated for covered with water before, but I like it. I covers how I feel.
I was actually much worse last week, the metric for worse being overwhelmed, and I’m better, but still overwhelmed.
I would prefer a God who wouldn’t overwhelm people, who would give people a letter in a colored envelope with gold foil, letting you know what problems you were getting 1 week in advanced in a neat and brief list.
No matter what the card said, having a card from God would be nice, knowing what was coming would be nice, I would like it.
But either there isn’t a God, or the one there is believes in reserving the right to overwhelm people or perhaps there is a God who is a bit hands off and we have created this overwhelming modern life style ourselves like Darth Vader messed up his relationship with his wife without Obi-Wan doing anything to cause problems.
So no card this week.
I could make my own, but it wouldn’t come a week early… so then no advanced notice… so I’m just responding to problems rather than preventing them, which is messy and frantic. Yuck.
My son knocked all the toothbrushes into the diaper pail today… I took care of it and well, but I wish I didn’t have to, I just want to be sick like I was before having kids. I’m so jealous of childless me right now.
I am going to Hawaii, hopefully next Sunday, but that means I have to pass the COVID test on Friday, I did make an appointment today, it’s wasn’t easy. Hawaii approved some test sites, but not all, two out of three options immediately fell through, but Walgreens seems hopeful. If I can’t go, I don’t think I’ll try again until my normal time in the summer. I’ve been trying since May, 6 months… it’s an inconvenience I can’t even describe yet. Yes, thankfully not dead, but the life style switch wasn’t the old one plus a bunch of Netflix and popcorn, like the commercials indicate.
So I’m loopy since I was sick with some kind of cold and cough, and I’m about to travel (I hope) and small pinworm changes in place (such as morning showers, I guess I’ll call it code white).
But aside from listing those things, which is something I do to de-overwhelm myself, that works very well, I have a decently happy mood.
Which is interesting to me, I’ve been upset and overwhelmed, I’ve been happy and not-overwhelmed, but this is the first time I’ve ever been happy and overwhelmed at the same time.
I have a large degree of serenity many things are out of my hands, a large degree of self compassion that I could have done many things, but not everything, so I think that’s where the happiness comes from…
Actually I think happiness is just normally generated, but things can dim it and take away from it.
So for example being ashamed of the pinworm in the past, which I didn’t bring into our home anyways, took my happiness away for about 2 years. I let it. I lost 2 years of wanting to go out, and even after it was over, I kind of enjoyed taking the kids to play dates less, because it’s just more pinworm waiting to happen 1/3 kids there age always infected.
I’m someone who pays attention to food handling, sanitation, hand washing, but my kids aren’t, and may never be, my husband really isn’t… so the first time I caught pinworm from my daughter I confronted with:
- My lack of control over my body.
- My lack of control over my home.
- My lack of control over my kids washing hands behind closed doors or choosing not to or forgetting to do so.
- The idea and truth that we are dirty people at least somewhat.
- The idea other people can get us sick again without knowing it.
- The idea other people will pretty much for sure give us worms or something like a flu again.
- The idea we may be the guilty germ givers someday.
- The truth that we get better when we get better not when I want us to do so.
- The truth that it takes multiple does to get better and I thus don’t know the exact time line.
Parasites were my number 2 fear in life, so dealing with it wasn’t nice or easy, but in hindsight some of the mental truths I had to face bypassed the pandemic mental truths that others, like my dad, would become mired in fearing.
So I was bitter, but not afraid and bitter during this pandemic, thanks to 2 years of pinworm-demic…
It’s funny how I was so embarrassed before, and now I’m ready to make a custom shirt that says “ask me about my worms”… ha…
I’m still the person I was, who if I lost my coffee mug I would be wondering where it was all day, and now I have more important things, like the lives of three people (two kids and me) to take care of, I’m still that person who can’t handle the mug being lost… ha.
Many people told me I would change when I had kids, I didn’t, not in “that way” of knowing what to do or being able to multitask.
Sure somethings changed, but not because I had kids, because of the events that transpired since then.
I am reconnecting to my own identity, hopes and dreams after years of sleep deprived wandering, but I find it hard to marry the two major aspects of my life, me the adult who likes intellectual pursuits, writing and philosophy, and me the adult with small children, who would like to be watched and played with, and whom I would like to wash and teach.
If it’s hard to find the placement for those puzzle pieces, it’s even worse to fit my husband in, he is a hindrance more than a help, that’s an unpleasant truth I noticed today. A month ago I was going to clean the shower, but my husband said he would, so I didn’t, until today. It’s easier to do everything, than to work as a team with him, it’s easier to do things without him than with him, he nags, questions, undermines, he does provide for us and shop, I do like that, but perhaps in the future I could form a better team if I was honest about didn’t work, if I was less afraid of the truth of the things that don’t work.
The sink has been backing up every night when we brush our teeth, it’s disgusting, I fixed it yesterday, but I hadn’t for so long, because I thought he would… so that’s how things are in general, we work better apart than together, that’s sad, but it won’t get better without the truth being faced.
As I wrote this I realized that it was partially diffusion of responsibility that causes a lot of our problems. I alone or he alone would have taken responsibility and acted, but us as a team… we tend to avoid saying anything needs to be done, because we know we probably won’t agree about what to do. We have trouble communicating, that’s something to work on in the future. I have trouble saying what I want or need because I think it will cause trouble between us, and I don’t like trouble, but the longer I wait, the more angry I get and it just causes more trouble anyways. My husband wants what I say to be nice, and so often I don’t have any way to phrase a not nice thing into a nice sounding thing, perhaps I should just accept that he won’t always like what I have to say and just say it, knowing waiting usually makes it worse not better?
My husband and I work worse together as a team than we do as two individuals, I know because we live apart half the year. I hope that we are able to change that next year, but if not I’ll set the best protective barriers I can to do the best I can for myself and the kids while we are together. It wasn’t a fun truth, but truth precedes treatment most always.
That would be nice, if God sent me a card each week for the next week. I would appreciate it. Even if it said die, or get cancer, bury husband, it would still be nice to have the week to prepare instead of living behind.
It’s nice imagining that my priorities are not all wrong, if I had them done for me, I wouldn’t find out later that they were horribly wrong and misguided…
If I vote Thursday, then test Friday, pack Saturday, I should be all set for the flight Sunday, only number four makes the other three so hard… that one might as well be in bold. The biggest challenge, the biggest opportunity, other people.
Making the card helps.
Perhaps I can make another one to deal with fits.
I like the cards, if only the cards came in the morning and I could anticipate what would go wrong and steel myself for it… maybe if I track the parts of life I hate I’ll notice a trend I can improve?