Overthought, Underprepared

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Main staircase at The Phoenix, Cincinnati. I was figuring out what my lighting would allow.

In my post last week, I mentioned the news about my aunt, my father’s oldest sister. It wasn’t the sole topic – there’s rarely only one – but it was an important one. At least, it was to me. I further went on to mention my personal exhaustion. That really hasn’t improved, although it’s more of a world-weariness than anything, which is not at all helpful. With recent events in the news, and the ridiculous stress at work, I’ve spent a fair chunk of this week in pain. My left shoulder has been killing me for months, off and on, and this week was full on. That, of course, made my back hurt, which then gave me a nasty headache. I forgot to do something at work yesterday that *really* needed to be done. I think Monday morning will be one asking for forgiveness rather than permission; the people who did what they were supposed to do shouldn’t be punished for my own failure. That’s just not who I am. Still sore, still tired, had tentative plans for this morning that I think I will pass on. I have something this evening, too, I think; my schedule has been a nebulous thought in the back of my head, things I want to do but keep forgetting I have planned. This week, too, was a bit of a fog. I am having trouble believing that Thanksgiving was just over a week ago; it seems so much further.

The news in the US isn’t good, not really. There are things going on that should have been resolved decades ago, but weren’t. I knew that, much as I didn’t like to admit it, and now other people are finding out. There’s still the backlash of people who’ve always had life work for them, suddenly discovering that when others want the same benefits, their lives change. Not more, not handouts, just the same. I’ve seen both sides. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m fairly pale; I get treated differently based on whether I have a tan and if I wear my hair straight. Really. To be fair, it’s not as bad as it was say 20 years ago, and definitely better than 50, but it’s nowhere near where we should be. People still think everyone has the same opportunity, and that’s just not true. There are all sorts of factors involved, some we can fix, some we can’t. Not looking for fair – life isn’t fair – just at the very least, an acknowledgement that there is yet room for change, for advancement, that we still have a ways to go.

That, among other things, has been weighing on me this week. After being told my aunt had passed back on the 20th, it got me thinking about all sorts of things – mortality, family, the future, MY future, potential, opportunities missed, opportunities yet to be had, opportunities that can be made. As I’ve already mentioned, I will be attending an information session on the 10th at my alma mater. Me being me, I keep finding ways to talk myself out of it, to show just how hard it really will be. I’m good at that, living my life in fear. Not of others so much as of myself, and what I should be able to do, but can’t seem to. I didn’t do too well the first time through college, after all. I passed, with a GPA above 2.5, but I was disappointed. I understood the material quite well – I couldn’t seem to translate that into papers or essay exams. The second time around I did significantly better, but the longest paper I had to write was a whopping 5 pages, and the tests were quite often multiple choice. Well, not completely, but the bits that weren’t were mostly math. See? Talking myself out of my own achievements. I need to stop that. My second time around, I did well. I had a 3.9, and that was with both undergraduate- and graduate-level classes on my way to an accounting Masters degree. I found it easier to finish my assignments on time (I wasn’t batting 1.000 there, but I still had a winning record), I asked questions when I was unclear, I took breaks so that I could continue to focus on the task at hand, instead of getting frustrated when it no longer made sense – I learned from previous experience. And while the school I attended was a for-profit school, it was a respected one; I could get a job with that degree, I already knew that for a fact. Life got in the way there, too, and as expected, it was no single thing. Once I was separated from it, I realized that I also didn’t want to do taxes for a living. I really didn’t want to do taxes. Understand, yes, investigate, certainly, even audit, but do? No.

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Staircase at The Phoenix, Cincinnati. Still figuring out how far my light would reach. Not quite far enough…

This time around, I know what I want; what I don’t know is how I will get it. The informational program on the tenth will cover the degrees available at the regional campuses. The one I want appears to be only on the main campus, and that frustrates me. I know the area; there’s no way I could support myself while taking classes up there. Not to mention I’d have to pay for it myself, and add to the ridiculous loan debt I have. I have one that is going down (Department of Education loans) and one that really hasn’t changed at all (Federal loans), even though I’ve been paying both, and they both have the same interest rate. Why in the world would I want to get a loan for my future when I know that there’s no possible way for me to ever pay it off?

Well. That’s Wednesday evening. Thursday, I have a rehearsal for our Christmas concert. We’re doing a Bach Christmas Oratorio; selections from, anyway, auf deutsch. We wouldn’t do Bach in English, not for a Music Series performance. Handel, on the other hand, well, he was a bit of an anglophile himself, ol’ Georgie Fred. Some time before our director retires, we’ll do his Messiah again. It’s really two concerts, Messiah. Part for Christmas, part for Easter. Last time I was in this choir, years ago when I was young and healthy and still had the lungs of an operatic soprano*, we did the entire Messiah. For the Christmas concert, I think. My last year, before I moved to Colorado, we did Mozart’s requiem in the winter, and Brahms’ in the spring. The contrast was fascinating.

Did I mention I *loved* my music history and theory classes? No? Well, I did.

I’m tired. I have to decide if I will rejoin the world today, or if I will go back and play Civilization IV for a bit. I haven’t been out with my camera for fun in a while, either; maybe I could do that. First though, I think I need to have some breakfast; I’m hungry.

Oh, and happy birthday to my sister! I’d post a picture – I’ve got some good ones – but I think I’ll save those for another time…

_________________________

*I still have those lungs; they just don’t have enough room to expand; now I breathe like a mortal! I have to take a breath in The Star Spangled Banner at “Oh, say does that star-spangled” and “banner yet wave.” It’s awful.

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