Gradual Epiphany

Trial

I am still in Atlanta, visiting with family and working through some stuff. Today has been a sort of quiet watershed moment as I’ve started to understand the impact of stress on myself. I’ve been feeling unwell for sometime now — dealing with this family situation has just exacerbated those feelings. I realized today that I’m going to have to learn to live with these feelings of being overwhelmed — more than that, I’m going to have to learn how to deal with them.

I’m not sure what’s it’s going to take. In a strange way, it seems like it’s another stage of growing up. I’m able to make my way in the world, pay for a house, support a wife — now it’s time for me to learn how to do more than survive, it’s time to learn how flourish and grow in the middle of hard times.

I’ve contemplated some today about why I didn’t feel overwhelmed while working at Jabber, or even college. All I remember about stressful times at those places was putting my nose to the grindstone and getting through it. Yet now, I find myself overwhelmed with schedules and tensions. It’s increasingly difficult to concentrate and avoid those dangerous feelings of “It’s too much!” What’s changed?

Me, of course.

I’m much more aware of my life, of each day passing by and how precious it is. Tasks carry less value than time — I want to seize each day I have with my wife, with my family, with my friends (few as they are outside of work). Again, I’m not quite sure how to go about that, but I know it’s more important. And so, with these shifted priorities, when the heavy times hit, I realize just what I’m missing, and it’s so much more difficult to deal with loss of that time…

There’s more to it than that, but I’m not quite sure how to put it into words. It’s not just an awareness of life, but there’s something else that I’m more aware of. And it’s not just stressing about work, it’s also wigging out about other life events.

It’s a growing process, a trial.