Sleep is over-rated I'm thinking as I type this. It's nearly one in the morning and I'm wide awake when I should be catching some zzzzz's in preparation for the rat race of work in a few hours. But oh no. Not so fast my brain says. There's simply too much to ponder. Too much to worry about. Too many details unfiled. Too many opportunities out there if I could just think of them! I'm reading a book right now called Stuck. It's author posits that some of us are "stuck" in our lives. Stuck in the past. Stuck in the present. Stuck in the what if's of the future. I don't know what the heck is going on with me.
For one, I've been trying unsuccessfully to fight off a sore throat for the last two days and I'm not winning the battle. Second, I keep thinking there's something I'm not doing, only I don't know what that is. Third, I'm not motivated to do anything right now! This is why I'm writing. When I can do nothing else, I can write about the frustration with nothingness.
Sometimes I think I am stuck in the past. Stuck in my crappy childhood, angry at all the ways it went wrong, still trying to switch things around in my head. Sometimes I think I'm stuck on the future, always trying to figure out how to be a better person, live a better life, find more happiness, have whatever it is that I'm looking for. In the present though, seems to be a hard place for me to stall.
I was at most in the present when I was working in the Emergency Room last year. There, the moment was the place to be. The urgency of each passing second. The problems that needed to be solved, right then. The people that were sick or dying, right then. The running around that needed to be done - STAT - the actual running that I did do. There was no before, there was no after. No one thought much of the past except for the few minutes a patient was on an ambulance and what treatment he had received. No one thought more of the future except whether or not he'd make it until tomorrow. It was all about the here and now.
I learned a lot in that ER. I learned about humility. About humanness. About behavior. About friendships. About trust. About love. Even though there were some painful steps in my life that led me to that place, I know that is where I belonged for that year. Part of me is still there. Still hearing the song of the monitors, the cries of hurt people, the wailing of relatives who have lost someone they love.
My grandmother would have been proud of the work I did there. She'd have thought it was time well spent. I think my whole family is a generation of helpers. We'd give the shirt off our backs to anyone who needed it. She was the one who instilled that in us, in me. I wasn't there when any of my grandparents died. I missed it. I'd been giving myself a hard time about it until a few months ago when I was there for someone else's grandmother. She was all alone and dying right there in my ER and I was right there too, holding her hand, telling her it was okay to go.
A lot of people I know watch a show called ER on television. It's apparently a great drama. I've never seen an episode. Don't need to. I've got enough memories of my own ER filled with drama to last me a lifetime. And I miss that place.
For tonight I'll try to focus on what's in front of me. The invisible list in my head. The lump that's in my throat. The little 4 year old that's sleeping a few feet away. I'll try to somehow unstick myself from this funk.