Sisyphean efforts and trust

Ok, so I’ve written about all this change and growth. In my standard love for life, I sometimes bite off more than I can chew. I can hear the eyes of my beloved friends and family rolling with that last statement, because they know me well. My nickname growing up was “jet,” and it wasn’t just because my darling brother had a tough time with my name; it was because I did everything at full tilt. That’s how I am. I embrace it and love the scads of experiences I’ve had in my life.

But today they all caught up with me. Let’s backtrack just a tad. This past weekend, my beloved husband invited some of his friends over, and that was something we all looked forward to. However, it also involved a bunch of cleaning as well. What started as just cleaning the downstairs turned into almost full-blown spring cleaning. In earlier years, this would not have been an issue. but this year (on top of all else), I’m coping with some medical issues that decrease the amount of physical issues I can tolerate at any given stretch. Somehow, in the midst of all of this, I somehow forgot to heed the signals from my body and pushed myself a bit too hard. No problem, I thought, some extra rest will take care of the issue. This was Sunday night.

Monday came, and a new set of classes and students accompanied it. I love to teach and thoroughly adore watching the students relax in that first hour as they find out that I’m not some scary teacher who’s out to put them through five weeks of torture. Add to that some other work that needed completing and my evening classes and voilà– I had a 14-hour work day. Again, I figured I’d just take it easy today and use my mind more than my tired body today. Wrong again.

Remember the old story of Sisyphus? He pushed a rock up a hill, only to lose control of it just before he reached the summit. Well, that was me today — the rock rolled over me! I had a completely unplanned episode of almost fainting in front of a whole class of students, which of course did wonders for my ego. I’m superwoman, didn’t you know (wanna see my gold lasso)? However, the most wonderful things transpired from this mortifying experience.

  • I had a few students who immediately stepped up to help me (without being asked) once we realized something was terribly wrong. They arranged for help and stayed with me until I was  escorted to a place where I could safely rest.
  • I bonded on a very human level with some of my coworkers with whom I have never been anything but professional.
  • I watched my safety net catch me in a wondrous way. The people on whom I rely the most for support and love were there, either in person or via text, immediately — and stayed with me until I was calm and secure.
  • My doctor took 10 minutes from her lunch to check me and explain what had happened — and gave me a prescription for movies, popcorn, and little-child poultices (which I highly recommend).
  • Probably the most important lesson of all was that  I learned to expand my trust in other people: trust that I can rely on others without losing my dignity.

I’m mostly better now, but plan to engage in one more movie. Probably The American President. You can’t beat Michael Douglas and Annette Benning for class and dignity under pressure in that film! Maybe some chocolate cake, too. I’ve heard it’s a miracle cure.

Until later, my dear friends. I’m going to go follow doctor’s orders now.



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