To just say that I am just stressed wouldn't do how stressed I really am any justice. If I were brave, I would post a video of my right eye twitching, which it has been doing for over 24 hours. So many things pop up into our adult lives, and it is sometimes hard to compartmentalize them and deal with them effectively. Right now I am facing several of these things. I find myself overwhelmed and all these things snowballing.
First, I take my comprehensive exams for graduate school on Friday. I have been very successful in my graduate program and am proud of my 3.96 GPA (would have a 4.0, no thanks to an A-). However, I suffer from test anxiety to a small degree. I get nervous about exams, midterms, finals, you name it, but I do ok because it's one class, one test, and I'm finished in an hour or so. But comps are different. I will have 6 hours of testing and all 6 of my required courses will be covered. I began preparation about 3-4 weeks ago by compiling notes and reading through them most every day. Some of this material hasn't been looked at in a year, and while I feel like I know the concepts, I find myself doubting what I know and if I really do know it. I am studying more intensively this week and just ready for it to all be over. Come Friday night, I will either be worn out or ready to celebrate. I won't celebrate officially for a few more weeks though, that's when I'll know if I passed or failed. I just tell myself to prepare the best I can, take the exam, and then the worst is over. I will be onward to May and graduation!
Second, my return to running is really frustrating. My injury is much better, and I've run a handful of miles here and there over the last 2 weeks. I find myself fatigued, naturally, but just not bouncing back as quick or as strong as I had hoped. I was off a while, so I figured this would be tough, but I was hoping to feel better quicker. This is the first week I'll be on a consistent schedule now that some traveling, work and sickness is behind me. So I'm hoping I can start turning the corner. Lately I feel like I take one step forward and two backward, and I don't feel like I am overdoing it which is what frustrates me the most. I'm focusing on taking it one day and one run at a time. I'm also really paying attention to my body, the injury and how I feel overall. I'm not used to being this weak, and it is an eye opener. I'm doing all the right things, so I just have to keep working, keep rehabing and try to stay positive.
Lastly, I have a few personal situations that are causing me significant additional stress. To quote my favorite band Coldplay, "nobody said it was easy, no one ever said it would be this hard." As I grow older, those words are so true. Life gets better with age, but it certainly doesn't get easier. I have enjoyed growing up, but I am finding life's decisions to be pretty intense. These are the moments where praying is easy, but listening to what He has to say is hardest. Sometimes when we pray for answers, we don't like what we get. What is the toughest is I usually have running to relieve some of the day to day worries, but I don't right now. I'm going to learn something from this, and God has plans and lessons in each of life's struggles. So I will keep listening, trusting and praying. It will pass, and I will be better for it when it's all over. And I'll find that the world didn't end in the process. But right now, I need a vacation!!!