Slow down, whippersnappers!

For the last couple of days, I have been agitated and ornery, ready to argue with everything I don’t agree with. And, as you would suspect, I tend to find A LOT of things disagreeable when I am in such a mood. I could have spent the entire fighting with people. I tried to vent my spleen harmlessly into the atmosphere by just tweeting my complaints to no one in particular, which felt like yelling at the clouds for being too fluffy.

A newspaper account of my day yesterday.

It added to my frustration that I knew the people I wanted to argue with weren’t actually the source of my testiness. Oh, sure, they were all wrong and I was totally right in every way as I always am, but the arguments were symptoms, not the cause.

And after digging through the pile of sour emotions, I found the source: a busy week ahead of me. I’m working as a standardized patient (SP) next Saturday, a 12 hour marathon acting session where any factual detail I mess up could lead to a would-be doctor failing that question, which could cause him or her to fail the doctor certification exam. Stressful, but I’ve done it before and it’s not too big of a challenge. But then, on Thursday, I was offered another 3 days of SP work for the ‘introduction to interview skills’ class at the medical school. Being super short on money, I leapt at the chance right away. this additional SP work means I now have 4 character histories to memorize and keep straight this week. 4 different dudes with different illnesses, different families, etc… Sounds kind of hard. Plus, I don’t know the particular order or process of the intro class, and the lack of clear detail and instruction is amplifying my frustration.

And is that enough stress? Not for this guy! I’m going apple picking for the London Food bank today, which I’m looking forward to, don’t get me wrong, but it is another scheduled activity to juggle in my tiny brain. And, I’ve volunteered to schedule a tour of the GTA for a Liberal Party presidential candidate, and trying to coordinate these groups is like trying to herd cats via email. Tick tick tick, there’s only so much time before the GTA tour starts. But like any volunteer-driven organization (and make no mistake, political parties are volunteer-driven nonprofits) you can’t hurry or push the members too forcefully or they just won’t show up.

And I’m pitching an article to every newspaper and magazine I can think of, hoping to make a little cash when I go to the big Liberal convention in January, if I can find a way to get there on the ultra-cheap. And I want to write a newsletter for the riding association this week, and I’m going to an event on Wednesday night, and I need to exercise before my pants explode at the seams from my increasing bulk. Oh, and somebody told me a long time ago that I’m also working on a novel. Wonder how that’s going?

The real question for me is, have I always hated being busy and therefore avoided it with all of my energy, or am I getting re-acclimitized to busyness after spending the last 2 years running at a leisurely kid speed? Either way, I’m going to put a concerted effort into transforming this displeasure into a positive sensation. If the future works out the way I want it to, I’m going to be increasingly busy: I need to develop the organizational and coping skills to handle it. But I still reserve my right to shout at passing cars or mutter at other drivers on the road about their poor driving choices.

Published by Chris

I'm an author, freelance writer, dad, and civic busybody living in London, Ontario

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