Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Attitude Check... Positivity isn't what you think

I have been having an oxymoronic/ paradoxic/ ironic type of issue with my attitude of late.  It is difficult to explain and has felt even more difficult to change.  Attitude is something I have written about several times before and I have often practised the 'gratitude' thing with my Thursday Thank You posts.  I have also shared about times when my attitude has been a little negative while I reside in the midst of darkness.  My mind is a scary place some days.  Are you intrigued yet?

My doctor (pain specialist with qualifications related to psychological, pharmacological and neurological fields) is very happy with me.  He seems to think that I am presenting positively in his office more than ever before.  The seed of doubt which is often germinating in his mind when I am smiling and joking has definitely died.  Either, I really am more positive, or I am getting better at outshining the darkness.  

People around me (my deputy principal and my parents) seem to think that I am (quote unquote) doing better.  They say that I'm laughing more and working well.  I seem to be thinking faster and looking happier.  All of this is based on comments from others, not from me.  

If you peeked inside my mind each day, you would see the roller coaster of emotions that I ride every hour.  I am happy.  I joke.  My mind is clear.  I am tired.  I am sore.  I laugh.  I bite my lip and chew on the inside of my mouth. My toes twitch.  I stare.  I read and my brain begins to bounce.  I talk to my students and they actually learn something.  I manage my classroom.  I produce new learning activities and print worksheets with relative ease.  I help colleagues.  I realise a mistake and I shake inwardly.  I cry.  I blink and I squeeze my eyes shut.  I breathe deeply.  I lie on the floor and my muscles spasm.  I hold my breath.  I apologise and admit defeat.  I stretch and I bend and I overreach.  I walk slowly.  I get lost.  I forget what I'm doing or where I was headed.  I move with purpose.  I giggle.  I get sharp pains and dull aches.  I sigh.  It never ends. 

Inwardly, I am constantly struggling with the up and down of mood and brain function.  I swing between brilliance and bumbling.  Outwardly, I am managing well.  

The fact is, that I am managing.  I am not perfect.  Perhaps, I need to remind myself of that every morning.  You see, even my biggest mistakes are minor.  I beat myself up over small things.  I fret over problems instead of focusing on the solutions for them.  Even after I have solved a problem, I worry about its cause.  I blame myself.  I take far more responsibility than is necessary or even reasonable at times.  I am too ready to fall on the sword.  I need to step away from that and realise my worth. 

While we are talking about worth: I need to acknowledge the worth of solutions.  The worth of results.  The worth of coincidence and failure.  It isn't the end of the world.  We have proof of that.  In fact, the world will keep turning and life will go on.  It will be fixed, or it won't.  But, if I have done my best, then that is all that I can give.  

There are days, when I am not giving my best.  There are days when I am ashamed of my best... I know that yesterday I did better.  I know that last year I did better.  But, I have to accept that today is what it is and my ability and my best today is all I can do today.  I need to stop waiting for the day when I will feel better.  That day may never come.  

In case you hadn't seen the paradox... I feel ill and often struggle with my pain.  But, apparently, I can manage that on my own and do my job.  There are days when I should probably be more sensible and stay home in bed, but most of the time, I'm okay.  

Sometimes, the best we can hope for is okay.  Sometimes okay is okay.

I'm okay.  Everything is okay.  
Just breathe.  

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