Wednesday, September 23, 2009

What lenses are you using?

It's been emotionally chaotic these past two days. I had taken two days off work and since Mum is with us, it was the perfect timing to have some mother daughter quality time. That's not the cause of the chaos, of course! We had a nice time out yesterday, shopping and afternoon facials at the spa.

However, when I came home, I checked my work email messages. I know I shouldn't have done so since I am on leave. The urge was too strong for me to resist. I had several messages waiting for me, all bearing similar sentiments of urgency and importance. I was stumped. I felt that I have been short-changed. These 2 precious days are my days off work. I have hardly taken any decent time off for the past 6 months. Why can't my bosses and colleagues respect that and leave me alone??

Anyway, I decided not to reply those messages, all except one because the sender used some threatening words which displeased me. All of yesterday evening, I was feeling low and upset. It just seemed that as long as I have been doing this job, I wouldn't have any "freedom". The work will always be hounding me. People do not respect my personal time and my boundaries in life. Did I bring this upon myself by being too conscientious with my work in the first place? I was always termed as the "reliable, dependable worker". If you need anything done, don't fret, Busybugz is always there to do it.

That was the lens I used to look at my life yesterday. DH came home tired and wasn't too pleased to find me in such a state. He tried his best to console me but it didn't work. He used a different pair of lenses. He used a practical one where he saw my life as it was, without any drama. He asked me a question, "How many people can really take time off work without having work waiting for them when they returned to the office?" He's right. Everyone shares the same boat as me. No one is left off the hook but others seemed to have a better balance in life in that they are able to compartmentalize their lives, not mixing personal and work time.

I went to sleep restless and very disappointed last night. I know that realistically, I have to keep working in this job because the pay is decent and I should consider myself blessed for having a job. However, somehow, knowing this just made me feel very trapped.

Little did I know that Mum couldn't sleep well either last night. She was bugged by something else. She missed my Dad who is back home now and she was also worried about my grandmother. There are also some other family issues which I don't want to bring up here. What I can share is that the pair of lenses she used was a very emotional one. She just couldn't shake what she felt and was very troubled. This morning, she said she wanted to go home. DH and I tried our best to console her but as you can guess (like mother, like daughter), it didn't work.

So, DH and I went to the train station and changed her train ticket so that she can leave this Sunday instead of late next week. We didn't share her view that she needed to return urgently as the existing problems have been there for years and wouldn't change even if she returned tonight or Sunday or next week. However, her perception was clouded by emotions and she made her decision based on what her heart led her to decide.

As you can see, I am very similar to my mother. There are many times, of course, when I don't want to admit this. I don't want to say that I am rash and emotionally unstable but it's evident here that we are very alike. My Mum's very soft hearted and very kind which often results in people taking advantage of her. I share that trait too although I like to believe that I am made of tougher stuff. I can see Osh Osh being that way too. Kindness is something that comes so naturally with him. I have this fear that in this hard, cruel world that my son will not have what it takes to bear the brutal attacks of those who have stone cold hard hearts.

What am I to do? I can't live in fear all the time. I can't take a baseball bat and swing it around crazily to defend my parents and my son against whatever evil that comes their way. Instead, I have to let go and turn to God in prayer. I have to rely on the fact that "...He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him for that day" 1 Timothy 1:12.

Life is tough. No one can deny that. We survive by choosing the right type of lenses to look at the lives we lead.

1 comment:

mummyof3 said...

I am similar to you in temperament to you, ie emotional, rather than practical. I need to *feel* rather than simply to know in my head. I just had a bad day recently, remember.

The good thing is that you are very self aware. So although you may have felt disturbed, disappointed etc, with a bit of reflection, you'd probably know not to react purely on those feelings.

As for allowing work to bug us, well, I have a BB, which makes it worse - I'm expected to check my emails. But if you don't have to, simply don't. Most times, they can wait and no blood will be shed or life lost (sorry, if i'm a little too cavalier). Also, it's good to remember tt perhaps it's just someone out there venting his/her stress on you via a fierce sounding email more than anything else.

Finally, we are only as trapped as we allow ourselves to be. Your dh is right. We all are bugged by it but it's also important to remember, that we can control it, perhaps not completely, but some of it, so that we don't need to feel so powerless. Easier said than done, i understand, but nevertheless, something to keep in mind.