At the End of it All

I began Thursday sprinting across campus in the dark.

Backpack clenched in one hand, spare sweatshirt in the other, I had four minutes to cross what normally takes about ten.

I would have gotten less than five hours of sleep had I slept well. But I was repeatedly startled awake by the loud, demonic vibrations of the wind through the quirky blinds of my room, and my sleep was already light from the restless fear that I would sleep through my alarm. I had even had a bad dream about being unprepared for this fieldtrip.

And after an awful, short, and fitful night, I still overslept.

It’s one thing to worry about it, but it’s quite another day-maker to have it actually happen.

I had to be clear on the other side of campus by 5:30am. I made it by 5:31. Pride hurt, lungs burning, and limbs very rudely awakened, I climbed numbly into the van with my classmates. I was the last one to arrive. And I felt completely awful physically for a good half an hour.

This week has been full of new experiences and the discomfort and stress that accompanies that, along with unwanted happenstances tagging along for the ride: stupid blunders, forgetting important matters, botching first impressions, avoiding homework because I’m still somehow refusing to manage my time more wisely, the inability to use my car because the battery’s dead, feeling like a heretic faced with spilling my guts to one of my dearest friends about a topic we don’t agree on, making an important phone call only to be too shy to leave a message and wondering when I should try again. And because I’ve been avoiding homework all week, Thursday night promised to be rather long.

But Thursday night brought an utter meltdown. An angry, desperate onslaught of tears as I sat on the edge of my bed, elbows resting on my knees and my hands clasped behind my ducked head. Because I was just so incredibly done. With explaining myself, with doctrine, with religion, with gender roles, with injustice, with social norms, with everything. I had had it.

But I still had one more day of classes left for the week. And the last day was a new one. I would feel better once I had slept.

But Friday morning, I slept two hours later than I had wanted, and I had distressing dreams within that time, most of which was dominated by the suffocative feeling that my throat was nearly swelled closed–which I imagine was because I had unknowingly draped my arm over my breathing holes and didn’t wake up from it. Then I tweaked my neck in tennis class and it still hurts. Tonight, the internet malfunctioned all over campus, so I missed a Skype date without being able to explain before they had already left (because even my phone wouldn’t work properly). And I had homework due tonight that I needed internet to turn in.

Luckily, I found working wifi at a nearby coffee shop.

If that, too, had been malfunctioning, I might have literally flipped a table.

This has just been one of those weeks—such a short span that leaves me in the corner hissing at life by the end. I don’t know why this one particularly was so stacked against me, rendering me emotionally compromised and then continuing its abrasion. I began to wonder about spiritual warfare—as I’m getting involved in controversial matters I normally wasn’t inclined to even think about much, and that I believe the results of which will do some good in this world. And about these matters, I’m thinking critically and ardently, being more willing than ever to question the way things are done.

And the advent of progress heralds resistance, both physically and spiritually. Which is kind of terrifying.

But at the end of this crappy week, I am left grateful for a few things, things which have seemed to rise to the surface of the sludge and exist outside the timeframe of one lame occurrence after another:

 

For dear friends, who encourage discussion, who listen with open minds, who have the patience to let me rant about the awfulness I have been wading through, and who know best how to support me when I just hate everything.

For art buddies, who get excited about my work, lovingly give me feedback and offer much appreciated art major knowledge, and propose regular meetings to draw together for fun.

And for simple things, like naps, lovely morning weather, and vent art.

 

So this week was butts.

But still, at the end of it all, I know I’ll be ok.

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