It’s funny — I stepped away from national news and much social media, last week, needing to just take a break from it all. And when I came back, it turns out, not much has changed.
The same dramas are unfolding… and slowly, at that. The same concerns exist. The same people are fighting. The same problems are being “framed in narratives”, rather than being directly worked on by people unallied with any political agenda.
Life goes on.
I’m not sure how to feel about it.
One way I do know I feel, is tired. Very tired. And it’s a total distraction. I needed the distraction yesterday, my first day back at work in the office after a frenzied week last week, with all kinds of extra activities going on. And that was fine. I got a little bit of work done. Just enough to stay busy and sorta-kinda on track. But I also spent a fair amount of time frittering away my day chatting back and forth over stuff I don’t even remember all that well.
Maybe it helped. Maybe it didn’t. Dunno. All I do know is that life is much bigger than social media, and it’s much bigger than the news. There’s so much going on, right now, I can’t keep up, anyway. And of course I need to take care of myself.
And this is how I do it — take care of myself — by doing pretty much as I please, at the pace I choose. I basically do the bare minimum for me, which is “above and beyond” for everyone else. And then I take what extra time I need to recover and do what I wish.
I do feel guilty, sometimes, for slacking off. But nobody else is looking out for me, and my employer isn’t going to accommodate me, so I make my own provisions. And that’s fine
The rest of the world doesn’t bend itself to suit my needs. It doesn’t accommodate me or make special exceptions for me. I’m stuck in same churning mill that everyone else is, and since it takes a bigger toll on me, I need to make my own exceptions, carve out my own sanctuary, design my own life around my own needs.
I do the bare minimum for me… and that’s “above and beyond” for everyone else.
Hooray for low expectations! They rock. They’re my rock in a hard place. And believe you me, this world we inhabit together IS a hard place for me and others like me.
I guess the trick really is finding what works, and working with that. And not feeling guilty about taking care of myself, in the process. It’s been a few years, since I started really guarding my own interests… doing the bare minimum… not wiping myself out “for the cause”… and it’s taken a lot of getting used to. Because there’s a part of me that wants to wear myself out for the cause. There’s a part of me that believes that unless I’ve completely depleted myself, I haven’t done enough. And there’s a part of me that believes that I’m entitled to automatic equitable compensation in exchange for my sacrifice… that the universe provides for those who render good service.
Turns out, I’m pretty much wrong on most of those counts. All of my expectations really hinge on the presumption of Justice (capital “J”) but as it turns out, the vast majority of people are much too overwhelmed, themselves, and much too distracted to promote that thing called Justice, or even pay it much mind.
I’m on my own, if I want equity and proper remuneration. I’ve got to pull the necessary strings, apply the necessary pressure, take the required steps, in order to get what I need.
And sometimes I have to take it.
Like I took a break last week from the news and social media. I’m probably going to cut out the news again, this week, because coming back to it is like taking up an old bad habit and remembering why you quit, in the first place. The world will continue apace without me. And by and large, there’s not a whole lot I can do about it. Except worry.
But that’s just tiring.