Saturday, 9 May 2009


It is my day off and I'd like to be outside in the park, but my joints are playing up and I'm not really walking well enough to go traipsing around on my own. So I'm catching up on bits of non-work computer stuff, instead.

I was going to post something serious, going to work on something from the placeholder post I wrote a few weeks ago now, or maybe a post on economics and spirituality and abundance and my take on these, but I've used up all my concentration for today so you get miscellany instead.

Had a lovely chat with Sweetie this morning about the future. Lovely lovely. Nothing we didn't already know, nothing we hadn't touched on before, but it was good to reaffirm that our plans for our lives are compatible.

On Wednesday we have a meeting with Potential Future Housemate to talk about house-sharing stuff. I am hoping it goes well. If not, I need to have a good re-think about some of the shorter-term future. I certainly can't afford to live alone and have the space I need to do the work I want to do.

This week I e-mailed the chaplain at Academic Institution to ask about... well, I'm not sure all of what I'm asking about, which was why writing the e-mail was difficult. Some of it is a matter of specific advice on a particular project of mine, but that overlaps with some major gaps in my understanding and faith. It's all a bit tangly. I'm not sure whether to point him at this blog or not. For now I will wait.

Yesterday I sang in a choral concert at fairly short notice. I have Lauridsen's setting of "O Magnum Mysterium" stuck in my head now. There are worse earworms.

Earlier this week I was feeling quite twitchy. This happens from time to time and usually passes in 2-3 days, and this time was no different in that respect. The worst of it is something I call the "what-ifs", not positive, expansive what-ifs like the ones Graham posts but more ominous and fearful. What if all my students quit? What if I fail my exams? What if I hurt those I care about, what if I alienate those I love, what if I miss everything important in life, what if I fail, what if I cause harm? It's a sort of litany of all the ways I could be unlovable, all the ways I could err, all the ways I could mess things up. It's part of the way my brain works: I have a lot of ideas, they all branch off of one another like a tree and I have trouble following only one branch. Sometimes this is an advantage, in that I have some pretty good ideas. Sometimes it's a hindrance, trying to decide which limb I can rest on, which bit of the tree to climb next. This was a particularly damaged limb, a blackened and diseased piece of wood, not safe to sit on for any length of time, but try telling my brain that!

On Monday I took this to my paper journal, where I don't worry about anonymity or what people might think. I wanted a quick answer to the what-if gremlins, a short and memorable rebuttal. And I got one, in the phrase "God will still love you." I hadn't expected that.

I would love to say that this drove the what-ifs away, that I felt better instantly, that I slept without nightmares that night. It didn't have anything like that sort of effect. I kept feeling anxious and twitchy. Whatever weird brain chemistry thing was happening had to run its course. But I think it helped, in that the twitchiness was a little easier to bear. That in itself is a mercy.


Sara said...

I like how you express the feeling as "twitchy". That really explains the feeling. Mine is usually accompanied by the inability to sit still. I have to be up and doing something, anything. I also find that writing gets it out of my head and onto the paper, kind of a purge.

Bryan said...

Normalcy and familiarity is nice sometimes - glad all is well in your nect of the woods.

Song in my Heart said...

Sara, I get the inability to sit still as well, it can be quite unpleasant.

Bryan, I wouldn't know anything about normalcy, and when things feel too familiar I get suspicious that I've missed something.

Thank you both for dropping by.

Graham said...

Thanks for linking and the very thoughtful comments that you leave on my blog.

I do have a lot of 'what ifs' like you do that tend towards anguish! I don't blog about them much, which is why I appreciate reading yours.

Thank you for sharing the honesty of your journey- I appreciate it!

God bless


Song in my Heart said...

Thank you for dropping by and commenting, Graham. I think maybe we all get the what-ifs sometimes. Mine get out of hand at times. I write about the negative things because that helps me to put them in perspective. Naming my fears seems to strip them of power; naming my hopes seems to make them stronger.