Thursday, April 12, 2018

I got nothing

*I don't know how many times I've used that title, but, eh meh, I do have nothing today - it's the second week of the month, which is always too busy and which always has too many meetings.

* Monday night was CWF (after the long day of dealing with the new hot-water heater install) and last night was Elders' meeting and Board Meeting. The good news was that (a) we were able to laugh at Board meeting, (b) We had a fair amount of memorial money come in on behalf of Steve, and we voted to divide it between two programs he loved and cherished, and I think that would make him happy, and it will also help those two programs continue to serve people.

There were too many times in the past when board meetings were tense and unhappy. I remember crying after a couple of them and crying IN one once. I realized last night - with a few exceptions, since the church split in 2003, we have not had a stable period for more than maybe a couple of months, and there were MANY times where I felt like we were on the brink of folding up shop. Things have been more stable of late but I admit the meetings always make me apprehensive because there were a couple of times when something was dropped, seemingly out of the blue, in the meeting that caused big problems.

And it's been 15 years we've more or less been in that state. That's a long time. I didn't realize how long. I'm amazed now how I managed to hang on and stay the course: I hate chaos, I hate uncertainty, and I confess, if we were in an area big enough (or where towns were close enough together) to have more than one Disciples of Christ congregation nearby....I might have gone and visited them and if they seemed friendly and non-chaotic, I might have stayed. Even if it meant more of a drive.

I suppose in a way I may have been one of the ones who helped hold stuff together here, though...first, taking on the Youth program, then, serving as an Elder and Sunday-school teacher, and now being Head Elder.

* But yes, I am tired. And I have one more evening obligation: tonight is the "public" performance of the Children's Play and because I still work I have to be one of the ones to collect money (and make change, and really, I hate it when someone pushes a $20 or even a $50 bill at me and goes "I want one ticket." [tickets are $2]. In the past, I wound up making change out of my purse when we got short on dollar bills and I'm pretty sure I didn't get back what I put in.... this year we are getting more change but still). This is an important thing to do (it's our scholarship money) but I admit I'm tired and would rather just be able to come home after class and take off my shoes and put my feet up and not go back out.

* I confess I am in one of those periodic funks of just being tired, and feeling a little underappreciated and I realized this morning (seeing some of the "high school sports stars" on their "signing days") of how nice it would feel to feel "wanted" in that way - that some place was willing to go out of their way a little bit to make me want to work with them or go to them.

Instead, I get ed-tech companies sending me e-mails that try to imply that I have a "prior relationship" with them ("We've had several e-mails") and trying to make me feel obligated to attend their webinar, or take some survey, or some such thing. And it makes me sad because I tend to be an earnest and literal-minded person, and I get these e-mails, and I look at them and go "wait, when did I agree to listen to these people's sales pitch?" - I got one once that essentially said YOU SIGNED UP FOR OUR WEBINAR SO YOU MUST ATTEND and I was like wait, what? I never signed up? And I'm in class when it happens anyway. And it's another instance of people just kind of LYING to get what they want and it makes me SO tired.

* I wonder some days (in regards the previous item) if maybe I was a dog (perhaps a golden retriever, they seem like the type) in a previous life because some days I feel like I'm dying for someone to tell me I'm a "good girl" and I think part of the reason I do take on some of the thankless tasks I do is that deep down I want people to notice me and tell me I'm good.

I'm not good at just being loud and outrageous to get attention, so I guess that's how I do it.

* Some talk of "punching up" vs. "punching down" in re: the Simpsons slap-back at "The Problem with Apu".

I hadn't known the documentary existed before I saw this week's episode but the whole "Marge re-does the Simpsons-world version of "The Secret Garden" to make it up-to-date and then they go to a college English department where the people tell them the author of the book was a crypto-lesbian, so what went on the book was really okay because subtle satire or some such" was kind of weird and oogy and I was all "Uh oh, Simpsons has gone full-on preachy about stuff and they're not even that well organized about it."

But, a thought this morning: Isn't, on some level, "punching down," just another form of bullying? Going after someone weaker/less popular/poorer/less in the majority than you, because you can or because something about them makes you feel insecure? (Not sure how this applies to The Problem with Apu, given that EVERYONE on the Simpsons is pretty much a caricature, but whatever)

I know now people think "punching up" ("Speaking truth to power"? Maybe?) is a good thing.

I will say, I don't particularly like any kind of punching; I am more of a "plants her feet firmly and keeps quietly and politely restating her point" person. It's not always super effective but....I just don't have it in me to punch.

And to tie things up: I suspect my childhood as a "borderline bullied" child (I don't think what I experienced was totally bullying, but I remember being excluded a lot, and I remember other girls saying really snarky awful things that got all their snark from the tone - some girls were good at that - so that when you repeated what they said to an adult, it didn't sound so bad to the adult) may have shaped a lot of my "doglike" need to be liked, and my willingness to put myself out in order to "make" people love me.

(Obligatory pony picture:

I can't do that level of crazy, though. I may feel it inside my head, but I can't do it.)

And also, having experienced something like bullying as a child makes it harder for me to run herd on other people, because I'm also too good at imagining, "Well, they might be going through something really difficult in their life right now, and maybe I need to cut them slack."

But I am getting awfully tired of the people who show up unprepared for stuff, or who figure it's JUST FINE that I re-do something at a later date just for them.

1 comment:

Roger Owen Green said...

feeling underappreciated - I know THAT feeling, big time