So I have these days when I have a tiny little problem, a problem so miniscule that it wouldn’t bother anyone but me. But for some reason, I can’t get it out of my head, no matter what I’m doing. I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, nothing can distract me from obsessing over it, even though I know that it literally means nothing. And the thing is, I know that I have bigger more important problems that I could be dealing with and am probably avoiding, but instead I am letting this little thing take over my life.
Now I’ve stopped seeing my therapist because a few weeks ago we decided together that I was doing fine enough to deal with things on my own (and I really do believe that). Anyway, she would probably say something along the lines of, “Is this what’s really bothering you? Or is there something else?”
So here’s my “giant” problem of the day, or maybe of the weekend: Campus security confiscated my electric tea kettle and now I have to meet with them to discuss my fire safety violation and pay a small fine. They actually sent me an email a few days ago so I knew about it, but I arrived back on campus today and discovered that they actually took my electric tea kettle, which I paid a solid $25 for. I was and am really upset because I think its a stupid fire safety violation and also because I feel like colleges can’t just confiscate your property (especially when its not illegal). Writing this out, I know I sound a little bit ridiculous, but that’s sort of why I’m writing it out. So I can reason with myself. Also I’m finding it really difficult to concentrate on the work that I actually have to do.
So I’m writing this post to help myself through the days or the incidents when I’m being obsessive and counterproductive.
1. What are you upset about?
This is a situation I could have easily avoided and I feel idiotic for just not having hid my kettle before I left for spring break.
2. Do you have a good reason to be upset about it?
Not really. It was a tiny mistake, but something that’s really easy to forget and there’s nothing I can do about it now.
3. Is there anything you can do at this moment to fix the situation?
No, I already scheduled an appointment with security so there’s nothing I can do until tomorrow.
4. What should your priorities be right now?
The homework that I neglected over spring break, finding housing, practicing piano, and taking care of my body.
5. Is there anything else you are worried about?
Being back on campus for another six weeks, being forced to socially interact, leaving the safety and comfort of home, and being responsible for myself.
6. Is there anything else you are upset about?
A few things…
Lately, I’ve been getting let down by a lot of people that I used to trust and respect. I feel personally betrayed, not by them, but by myself for having so much trust and belief in the good of people. I want to keep up this positivity, but I’m afraid that I’m turning into a cynic.
Because I’ve been trying to take such good care of my body, I’ve had to restrict myself. A lot. I know its a good thing, but I wish I could just have a stupid college kid night once in a while and not be confined to a different set of rules than everyone else.
I’ve been feeling really negatively about my body ever since Japan. I know I’m getting back on the right track now, but at the same time, I wish I had known from the beginning how to take care of myself. I’ve been telling myself lately that I’m going to die early because I’ve had so many health problems and pop way too many pills for a 20-year-old. I said it to my mom yesterday and she understandably got really sad and sort of angry.
Generally, I feel like I’m starting over spring of my junior year because I wasn’t smart enough to see these things in advance.
7. Why do you think you are really upset?
I think I’m upset because this seems like a mistake I could have easily avoided just by thinking ahead, as I could have done with a lot of these other things. This just seems to be the simplest most avoidable scenario. Now that I have things in perspective, I’m remembering that its impossible to predict the future and that these mistakes are what create a better future. Sometimes they are inconvenient for awhile, but things inevitably end up better.
What are you happy about in your life right now?
I am finally on the right track and I am fairly certain of it. I have exciting plans for the next year and beyond that. I’m happy with the classes that I am taking and I have been doing focused and doing well. Spring is coming and now I can go on walks again without death-defying winds. If campus security doesn’t give me my tea-kettle back, I’ll just get another one (because I just bought a bunch of new-flavored teas). Although I’m worried about falling back into old habits these next six weeks, they are also an opportunity to do better than ever before. Despite the little voice in my head that’s trying to tell me that everyone’s faking it, I know that I have wonderful wonderful friends who do care about me.
Wow, I feel so much better. Gonna go conquer my work now.