Saturday, July 9, 2011

Day Sixty: Panic

This afternoon, my brother-in-law innocently asked me about a family gathering on a date in September.  I pulled out my trusty iPhone and checked the date on my iCal.  In doing so, I scrolled through two work days already booked with classes I'll be teaching in the fall and meetings I have to attend.

It was terrifying.

Apparently, I have-- without even noticing it-- entered into Full Sabbatical Mode (FSM).  All the time I spent worrying about whether or not I would ever relax enough to enjoy my sabbatical were all for naught. I achieved FSM and had done a darn good job forgetting about my heavy work load, my responsibilities, the curricula I have not yet planned, the events I have not yet advertised, the sermons I have not yet  written...

Then I checked that calendar. It is amazing how quickly that anxiety can come rushing back.  I have one month of FSM left and I don't want to spend it freaking out about what is to come when I return.  But now there are calendar dates ringing in my eyeballs and "did I remember to..."'s running sprints through my vacation-softened brain.  I have no idea what to expect when I get back but I really don't want to worry about it yet.  But it is so hard not to!

Jesus' admonishment about the lilies of the field is still one of the hardest for me to deal with.  It is easy for me to write it off with a bunch of "yeah buts":
Yeah but Jesus didn't have two small children.
Yeah but Jesus didn't have a mortgage, student loans, a car payment.
Yeah but Jesus didn't have a boss or a spouse.
Yeah but Jesus didn't have aging parents.
Yeah but Jesus didn't have to worry about global warming...
etc etc...

This is, of course, the point.      

The classes I need to teach in two months will be fine.  As far as I know, my kids have gotten three squares every day of their young lives (usually more, the little piglets).  There is no reason to believe that just because my sabbatical is ending, suddenly everything that has always been true about my life-- that it usually works out by the grace of God-- will no longer be true.

Worry gets me nowhere but worried.  So far, FSM has helped me to push the bread of anxiety to the back of my shelf where it is growing moldy and gross.  My hope upon returning to work is that I will not bake myself a fresh loaf.

No comments:

Post a Comment