I have had to deal with the most maddening situation this week. Basically, I needed something and it all seemed so simple to me -- a couple of phone calls, maybe a form to fill out, and a professional involved in my case to expedite the whole thing. Well, this process took on an ugly life of its own. Three days of unnecessary emails, doubt, and questions from the "professional", enmeshed in bureaucracy, left me angry, exhausted, defeated, and bitter. In the end, I had to remind myself of a few rules:
1) A definition of insanity is "doing the same thing over and over, and expecting a different outcome"
Well, this person is someone I have dealt with before, more than once! Each time I have dealt with her, I end up feeling the same way I did yesterday. So why did I go to her
again? Does this mean that I am insane? Probably. But it also a control issue, one where I somehow convince myself that a less-than-competent bureaucrat will see things
my way, or at least I can teach her to. Well, sadly, this never works with most people.
2) I seem to forget, at times like these, that not everybody works as I do. Part of this frustration is due to the fact that I can't work anymore, and wish I could. Anyway, I
am always thinking "if I had that job, I could do it so much better.
3) Most importantly, at some point, I just have to accept that my problem isn't going to get resolved with this person and either move on somehow, or find another
resource to solve the problem.
The problem with ALS is that there is often no time for this nonsense! You would think that the people who work with ALS patients for a living, would always keep that in mind. Alas, this isn't always the way!
Until 2004, I was an independent and active woman -- a former airline sales exec and then a high school educator. Then my body kept betraying me. I was finally diagnosed with ALS/Lou Gehrig's Disease -- confined to a wheelchair and unable to speak. With life at a slower pace, I learned to live a more conscious and mindful life -- buying, eating and other choices. I listen instead of talking, and I observe instead of running and rushing.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
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