I’ve been feeling weighed down and anxious for a while…my dreams have been anxiety-laden and my sleep has been spotty. I didn’t know what exactly was stressing me out.
Today I panicked about a class project…and realized that I’m overwhelmed. There’s too much to juggle right now. And the thought of dropping something – it made me feel like a failure.
It’s hard to make the decision to let go of something and not feel like that means that I’m failing. I know it’s about balance, at least, intellectually I do. But my inner critic says that if I can’t do it all, I’ve failed. If I can’t juggle four jobs and classes, how will I ever manage anything? And I know this is crazy. Because no one can go non-stop. And if the past week or so has been this crazy, I can’t sustain this with no days off for months. Something has to give.
And when I acknowledged to myself that I have to put the wheels in motion to drop a class…it was scary. But I could feel the weight lifting… Now I just have to accept that this is a success, not a failure.
As I listened to the voices on the radio today asking where were you, did you cry, how did you find out…and all the many questions about 9/11, I realized that while I remember that day, it’s fogged over. I don’t remember crying…I don’t think I did… I remember being at work, sorting nuts and bolts and screws in the hardware closet, when they told me to come to the break room where the tv was. I don’t remember who told me to come in there. I don’t remember who was there.
I remember, vaguely, the traffic, as my fellow apprentice drove me back to the city so I wouldn’t have to take the train. I don’t remember if SEPTA was even running. I remember watching the TV for hours. But I don’t remember what was said. I don’t remember who I called, other than Colleen, if anyone. I don’t remember if my roommate came home.
I don’t remember if I went to work the next day, but I remember that they put extra guards on the Liberty Bell and evacuated the tallest buildings in Philly, though I don’t remember what those buildings were called.
It’s hard to find clear memories of the greatest tragedy that occurred in my lifetime. Maybe that’s because of the magnitude of the tragedy. Maybe that’s because I was already buried in my own personal rubble, and didn’t dig out for a long time after that. But I wish I could say that I cried that day, that I remember who I talked to, what I did besides stare at the images on the television. But I don’t. As much as I can answer “where were you” for that day, I think the harder question is “what happened?”
And I still don’t know.