The Thoughts of a Frumpy Professor

............................................ ............................................ A blog devoted to the ramblings of a small town, middle aged college professor as he experiences life and all its strange variances.

Friday, May 04, 2012


In my world, being at that percentage earns you a grade of "B-" which is a smattering above average.  It appears that my cold/flu condition has abated and is being fought off well enough by my immune system that the tides have turned and I am starting to feel physically more like my normal self.  I would say that I feel about 80% back to normal physically. 

In terms of my emotional health... well, I can say that it has improved some as well.  I would probably put my emotional health at roughly a 65%.  This equates to a "D" grade in my world, but is a helluva improvement over how I felt the last three days.  I can feel my emotional health starting to return as well.  I am hoping and working to have my emotional health continue to improve. 

What was it all about, you may ask?  It is rather hard to answer.  I think a substantial part of it was triggered as a result of how utterly lousy I felt physically.  I did almost nothing else for two and a half days other than lay in bed and sleep or drank fluids.  I felt truly like I was in a wreck of some kind.  Every muscle in my body ached, my chest ached, my face was inflamed and sore to the touch.  I had an extremely sore throat.  My nose ran constantly, and I was sneezing every 10 minutes or so... not just a typical sneeze, but a huge, monstrous sneeze of the type that makes your nasal cavity ache and burn, and no matter how you try to brace for it, stresses out your lower back muscles.

The physical pains I felt, and the fears about what the hell was happening to me helped my mood to sour as well.  And, laying around drifting in and out of sleep (in-between huge sneezes) allowed my mind the opportunity to ruminate over things in my life.  I unfortunately did not, spend time thinking about the joy and love of my family, nor the happiness I feel when I do a good job.  Instead, I was thinking, ruminating over various failures I have had in my life, I thought about how fleeting life is and how short it is, and I thought about how death was looming around the corner for me and for all those I know and love.  I thought about how much I missed things about the past... my kids when they were young, my parents, the early days of my marriage, the early days of being a professor, my uncles and aunts, days of freedom of spirit and simple joy in the moment.  

As most of you know, I have been working strenuously to simplify my life so I can get back to feeling more carefree, and feel more of the simple joys in the day-to-day.  When I was feeling so very sick, it felt that it was impossible to ever find that route to being carefree and loving and living in the simple joys of day-to-day living.  I came to a point where I felt I had failed, failed at life, and I truly did despise ever fiber of my being for failing myself and failing my family in that way.  I hated myself, and with my hate and fury at myself, I was so angry.  I was so very angry.  I picked fights with my family.  I was.... in a horrible, horrible place in my mind.  It felt like there was no where to turn.

I knew the only course of action that I had was to literally try to wait it out.  After trying to be at the U yesterday, I left after only about 20 minutes and went home physically and emotionally exhausted and slept.  I went to bed, and continued to drink (probably a gallon or more of water and soda) yesterday and forced myself to read so as to not focus on how sad I was.  When I would be so tired that I needed to sleep, I worked as hard as I could to think about what I read instead of going into the ruminations of how I felt, how sad and hopeless I felt.

By last night, I could physically FEEL that my body was less sore, my sneezing abated and my temperature was normal.  The inflammation began to subside as well.

So, I feel I am mending.  I feel more close to my day-to-day self physically and I do not feel the intensity of the self loathing I had been feeling.  Please do not get me wrong.  I still do want to make changes in my life so that I can feel more joy and more care-free moments and days.  After I am more physically back up to snuff, I will continue to make efforts to simplify my day-to-day life and work at finding joy in my life.  I know it is possible to find joy and happiness.  I have a good life.  I just have to work at and reshape some things about myself and about some of my situations that will give me the opportunities to be awash in feelings of contentedness and happiness.



Blogger Andrew Quixote said...

My good friend Pipe Tobacco. Of course I would prefer your input into my life as I put it out for all to see. You got to where you weren't writing much and I just simply, well, my interest waned. I will certainly start commenting again in earnest for you, my good friend. Take care and thanks for your comment today!

Friday, 04 May, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please do yourself a big favor and get on an antidepressant. It needn't be long-term, but it does help to get through bad patches enough to be able to sort through it all. AND get some counseling. You know you need it -- it's all over your posts. Again, it needn't be forever; just long enough to be able to see the forest again and not the individual trees in your way.

Been there, done that

Friday, 04 May, 2012  
Blogger BBC said...

As I recall you have been trying to simplify your life for over a year with no reports of positive progress in that area.

As a friend (or even as an expert) I suggest that you take a leave from the university for a year. Do a year of field research out in nature away from so many pressures and demands.

Or spend a year bumming around the country seeing all the things you would like to see before you kick the bucket. Been there, done that, it's good for the soul.

Seeing a professional certainly may be of benefit to you also.

And of course, good luck.

Friday, 04 May, 2012  
Blogger austere said...

You already sound better.
First get well.
Then decide what you want to do, what is the rush?

Even if you decide or do not decide to see a specialist,put it off a week, the sky won't fall...

What d'you suppose this bug is, viral or bacterial?

If 80% is B- I'm glad I didn't attend your classes, I'd have thrown a fit, stomped my foot and walked out. Into the sunset never to be seen. To the sound of technobeat, which I dont much like, yet.

Saturday, 05 May, 2012  
Blogger amelia said...

Great idea to take a leave! Just what you need!
Billy, you should start writing an advice column :)

Saturday, 05 May, 2012  

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