Thursday, June 12, 2014

I Get Knocked Down (but I get up again)

Sometimes I think the measure of our psycho-social-spiritual growth isn't how many fewer times we get our feet knocked out from under us, it's in how much faster we're able to regain our balance and get up. Anyway, I always loved the song "Tubthumping" by Chumbawumba.

Today was one of those days at work that left me feeling frustrated and angry, more with a few particular colleagues related to an ancillary task than about anything I consider my real work. I felt angry enough that I was shaking and I wanted to cry. Not that anything so terrible happened, but that somehow what was said really hit me in a vulnerable spot, and left me feeling belittled and threatened. Which usually leaves me feeling belligerent. Thankfully it was the end of the day and I managed to wrap things up and did not send an angry email response. I'm grateful for having been taught good impulse control.

I came home fantasizing about taking off and finding somewhere cheap on a beach to live for the rest of my life. I told my husband we could garden and he could cook and I would knit and we'd set up a little stand at a farmer's market somewhere and live off our savings plus whatever we could earn. Fortunately my husband is wise enough to just smile and hug me when I'm like this. And he made brownies. A little walking outside, a tasty dinner, time spent putting our daughter to bed, some venting to my mom and my husband, a brownie and more walking on the treadmill and I feel better now. I'm no longer looking for a shack on a beach. I'm still irritated but I can have more of a sense of humor about the whole thing, and probably tomorrow I'll be able to work everything out reasonably well.

That's a pretty quick recovery for me. I've had times before when I'd go to bed still angry and wake up with a dreadful headache from all the muscle tension and would dread having to go back to work and deal with the situation. I don't think that's going to happen today. I feel pretty calm and I feel capable of managing the situation tomorrow morning. So that's progress.

I read something recently that challenged me to be the kind of adult I want my daughter to be, because she'll learn far more from who I am than from anything I say. So, I'm working really hard on growing, mentally and emotionally and spiritually, both to be a better person and to model that growth is an ongoing journey. I'd like to get to a place where I don't feel threatened so easily and where I don't get emotionally knocked over by people's careless comments. I'm not there yet, obviously. But I'm getting up faster, and I like that.