Bfth's Word of the Year


Can you guess what it is?  You might think it is stressed.  That was a contender, but I've decided my word of the year is OVERWHELMED because that's how I feel most of the time.  It's not that there is one thing that is stressing me, there are multiple things.  In all honesty, many of these things are small and/or not difficult, but put them all together and they become overwhelming.

For example, going to the office three days a week is stressful, but not overwhelming.  It means being organized and prepared every morning.  Wearing the appropriate business casual attire, but also making sure to wear comfortable shoes for walking and having a coat and/or umbrella for walking to and from the bus.  Making sure I have lunch, my office pass and phone.  (Can't get on the bus without my digital pass.)  Giving myself enough time to walk to the bus stop and making sure the bus is coming.  (Even though I didn't have to go into the office today, I checked the NJ Transit app and it looked like the 7:30 express didn't show.  If I was going in, I'd resort to my Plan B...and making sure that I have a backup plan IS stressful.)  Being in an office isn't that stressful.  (Although I still feel it's pointless, but...)  It can be noisy and distracting (more so than being at home) which can be challenging.  And then of course, there is getting home, hopefully on the early express bus.  

Add on to that my father's health situation, which is stressful to him AND to me.  He was in the hospital in mid-February.  He was able to come home for a brief time, but had to go back in March.  From there he was taken to a rehabilitation facility (the same one that my mother was in briefly...I made that decision and I am still not sure if it was the right one or not, but...).  What I thought would be a 2-3 week stay has grown into a longer period of time.  I (foolishly) thought that he might be able to come home this week, but that is not the case.  I want him to be able to come home soon where I know he will be more comfortable.  (It goes without saying that he wants that too.)  I go and see him every Saturday or Sunday (depending on what else is going on); the hour drive up and back CAN be stressful (twice I've gotten stuck in horrible traffic where the hour ride doubled...I am NOT good in traffic jams).  I manage his finances, which is not difficult, but is stressful. (Once again I have had to deal with the Bank of America, which has brought about a great deal of stress in the past: and, however this time I seem to have someone at the ONLY branch near my father's home which is open who is competent and organized.  Of course this Saturday is the LAST Saturday that the branch will be open.  Makes perfect sense to close a branch right before summer season when the shore is at its busiest, but that's Bank of America for you!)

Add onto that the end of the school year.  There's my son's 5 week internship. (That is IF we can get the person he will be interning with to fill out the required form, an ongoing challenge for nearly 2 weeks and it needs to be turned in tomorrow!)  There are AP exams. (One of which he is taking as I write this.)  There is prom.  (He's got the is he getting there?  No one knows!).  There are banquets and ceremonies.  Finally, there is actual graduation.  And while all this is going on, he (we?) need to be getting ready for the big move to college in August.  There's more forms that need to be filled out, items that need to be purchased and God knows what else that loom large.

Finally, several months ago, I agreed to give a meditation (because I just can't call it a sermon) at church on May 21st.  I've stepped in before, but this time, I'm having a difficult time figuring out what to say.  The lectionary is not inspiring me and my mind is blank.  (So is the page on which I'm trying to write!) I've got time, but the clock is ticking.  (Ticking loudly in my head.)

These stressors, all piled on top of each other overwhelm me. I am doing my best to keep positive (especially when it comes to my son because this is one of the most joyous times in his life and I don't want MY stress to squash that).  I am exercising regularly. (Getting up earlier to do so since I have to catch a bus 3 days a week.   Of course the walk helps too.).  I'm trying to get plenty of sleep.  (I'm not...) I'm doing my best to be sensible.  Sometimes all of these things help; sometimes not.  No matter what, I'm just doing my best.  I'll keep going because that's what I do.  It’s what I need to do; one step and one breath at a time.


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