Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Redefining My Boundaries

As you may know, I've gotten slightly more into politics over the last two years or so.  Though I've always done my research and voted, I never really paid much attention to what was going on or read the news much.  Not that I became a political junkie or anything, but I started reading more articles, which led to getting more invested in one point of view or another, and it also means that I saw a lot more of the ugly side of things. 

You might not be aware of this, but our media is very polarized right now (NO!) and things like Twitter and facebook make it much easier for that polarized spirit to leak out of your computer and get all over your friends and family.  For me, though I tried to stay neutral and only enter the political posting waters from time to time, I still found myself getting more and more angry at people- not simply for their posts that I may disagree with, but for the attitude I inferred from these posts.  There is a real spirit of anger, judgment, and hatred that turns my stomach, but I was getting caught up in the mire of being angry because these other people were always so angry! 

The other day, Glen Beck pushed me past my breaking point.  So what was it that I broke through and what am I leaving behind?  All my mini-political junkie trappings.  As painful as it is to me, I'm not watching the Daily Show or the Colbert Report anymore.  I'm not following columnists on Twitter.  I'll hide more people on facebook if I have to, but I'm not going to fight anymore, even in my own head. 

It's not my job to be right.  It's not my job to convince people that...well, of anything really.  At least not in the "I'll convince you with my words and badgering and facts and figures" kind of way.  I am an influence on people, and especially on a decent number of students.  What am I teaching them by posting snarky political things or arguing with my friends and family in a public forum?  Not love and respect. 

Am I saying that one should be uninformed?  Not at all.  I just need to concentrate on what my job is and what my job is not.  I am a teacher and leader and example; hopefully of love, mercy, humility, and grace.  I know where my priorities lie. 

This has gotten old.

I've been mostly incapacitated for about 2.5 weeks now.  Well, not quite incapacitated, but it feels like it.  First, I had a week of asthma that truly sucked.  I've never had what I would call asthma attacks before, but this was bad:  very tight lungs and sheer exhaustion.  Once I finally went to the doctor, I found out that both my inhalers were expired, which is why they weren't helping very much.  New inhalers helped a lot, not that the lack of inhalants was what caused the attack.  That remains a mystery.

Or it was from sickness.  (Sweet, fancy Moses, I just typed "frum" at first.)  I had wondered if my complete exhaustion was just from the asthma or from my body fighting something.  Once Seth got sick, I was quite proud of my body for successfully fighting off his illness.  Then I got it.  Blerg.  I started feeling sick 10 days ago, and I am super tired of it.  I had a good, old-fashioned flu.  Achy body, fever, stuffy head and headache, and cough.  I thought I would be over it by the end of the week, but it won't leave!  I missed my last class, didn't visit family with Seth, and missed church.  Gah.

At my professor's suggestion (she's a sicky who totally understands being wiped out and having to take care of yourself), I have requested an incomplete for this quarter.  I thought I could do it, but my sleep has gotten even more jacked up than usual with this sickness draining my energy (naps lead to being up all night, even though I am completely exhausted), and even when I am up, I can't always concentrate on research.  I was feeling kind of guilty about requesting it, but after I took the dogs to the dog park yesterday, barely exerted myself at all, and came home feeling wiped to have my husband say, "You don't look like you feel good," I decided to go for it.  I'll keep plugging away and get my stuff done ASAP (like, next week), but it will be nice to have the stress off. 

This illness has prompted a number of people to say, "You're sick a lot," which has pissed me off a bit.  It pisses me off that I do seem to be sick often, and it makes me feel like it's viewed as a personal failing on my part to have such a weakling of an immune system.  I don't think of myself as an unhealthy person, but maybe I am.  Or maybe my body just doesn't react well to my previous modus operandi. 

Nevertheless, I am changing things.  Seth's health added into the equation, we need change.  We've already begun changing our diets, and I'm trying to shift it into a higher gear.  I'm having more vegetarian days and I'm planning on loading up on fruit and veggies and just concentrating on eating real food as opposed to processed junk.  I've been doing this for a few weeks already and I do love it.  I've also noticed that, possibly due to sluggishness but I'll take it, I just don't care about eating and food that much, which is a fan-freaking-tastic change for me. 

Wrapping up: I'm hopeful about our food and excited about eating better.  I'm kinda depressed today because I want to be well and go running and I just want my sleep to be fixed already once and for all

//end depressing and ranting blog post//