Useless Thoughts Running Through My Head

various musings of a generation x kad

Archive for the ‘guilt’ Category

My organizational block

Posted by thoughtful1 on December 11, 2008

No one likes paperwork.  Well, maybe a few do, but I suspect they’re in the minority.  I am one of the many who do not like paperwork.

And I’ve noticed it causes my brain to freeze.

I am in the middle of refinancing my mortgage.  Last week, maybe Thursday or Friday, I received paperwork from the bank and the bank’s attorney to fill out and return.  Or maybe it was over the weekend.  I’m not sure.  Either way, I’ve been stalled on filling out the forms until tonight, when I panicked that I was going to hose the closing date by not getting this shit done.

I should have sat down and gone through the forms when I received them.  But when I read through them, I put it off.  And then in my mind it turned into a clusterfuck.  I just didn’t want to or couldn’t deal with it.  Objectively, they aren’t that big a deal.  The hardest part was figuring which address to put down for the current mortgage holder since it’s held and serviced by Big Corporations.  That took 10 minutes.  But my brain got hung up on the insurance certificates.  I kept putting off dealing with it thinking I needed to call the loan officer and ask if she had already obtained the insurance certificate.  And that task somehow became the road block to looking into all the other things I had to do.

And then tonight I realized I was close to the end of this week and I needed to get stuff done.  So I am up later than I want to be (again) filling out forms and feeling anxious.  I’m almost considering driving to the post office to drop these off so they get to the bank and the lawyers by Friday.

In the meantime, I have to get the condo association trustees together with a notary to sign yet another form.  All of this before next Friday.

Now, maybe this is normal behavior, I don’t know.  But I feel like it isn’t.  There was just some sort of weird thing blocking my ability to deal with all this.  Granted, some unexpected things came up that got in the way.  I was going to go through the paperwork last night when someone called me.  After the call I decided to go to bed rather than stay up even later.  I could have told him that it wasn’t a good time to chat, but I didn’t.  I wish I had.  But, even so, I’ve had three days to go through this and I’ve put it off.  My brain just didn’t want to deal with it.  It’s like I just couldn’t sit down and go through it and figure it out.  Oh, and I feel guilty about it.  I’ve betrayed some sort of rule about Being a Proper Person and getting this sort of stuff done in a prompt manner.

I don’t remember being like this all the time.  It seems to have cropped up in the past year or two.  I feel like I’m out of control – like I can’t get a handle on things.

So now, late at night, I am going to drive to the post office and mail these.  And then I need to de-stress and go to sleep, something I’ve had trouble doing the past several nights.

Oh, and I haven’t even started on this year’s Christmas cards.

I did, however, finally put files in my file cabinet:



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Post-holiday funk

Posted by thoughtful1 on June 28, 2007

I returned from Portland on Tuesday morning. I took a red-eye out. I hate red-eyes. I can never sleep well on a plane. So, Tuesday was a bust since I ended up sleeping most of the day. Yesterday I ran errands, sort of. I went shopping – I finally found some skirts. I bought two Land’s End Chino Skirts at Sears. The problem, though, is they didn’t have them in petite, so they’re a little longer than they should be. I may take them to get hemmed. *ponder* Today I slept in, exercised, then puttered around before going grocery shopping.

I’ve been home three days and I still haven’t unpacked from my trip. As usual, I am in a post-holiday funk. The fun is over. General Assembly was fun and informative, but tiring. I’ve returned from the pretty, altered reality of vacation in Portland to the dull, cluttered reality of my life. I have bills to pay, luggage to unpack, and major decluttering to do. I still haven’t unpacked from moving last summer and I really should try to finish that up. I told myself I’d do it this week, or at least make some headway. And, I haven’t. So now on top of the post-holiday funk I feel guilty for not following through on my plans. All while trying to readjust my inner clock in preparation for the loud, scary 6:30 AM alarm clock on Monday morning.

Oh, and I need to remember that tonight is trash night. Especially since I had lamb chops last night and I don’t want those to sit in the garbage for a week.

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I am a bad delegate

Posted by thoughtful1 on June 17, 2007


I have misplaced my delegate card for the Unitarian Universalist Association General Assembly. It was given to me at church. I have no recollection where the hell I put it. It might be in my car somewhere. This is bad. I have to present the card when I register. If I cannot find it then my church is down one delegate. I need to find the sucker before tomorrow morning.

I am a bad delegate.

UPDATE: It’s 1:13 AM.  I still haven’t found the damn card.  I checked my car – it’s not there.  This is not good.  FRAK.

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UU guilt strikes again

Posted by thoughtful1 on April 6, 2007

Going through my Hotmail mail, I don’t bother reading social justice notices from the ACLU, Common Cause, or the folks trying to save people in Darfur, but I do read the occasional Friendster update. Does that make me shallow? I don’t think I’m shallow. But I am overwhelmed. I know the world needs saving, and I know the Good Fight must be fought, but when it’s 9:25 PM on a Tuesday and I am tired and my house needs cleaning and I’m just checking e-mail and I cannot deal with Darfur.

But it makes my heart ache.

Yet isn’t it unreasonable for me to think that I can do much about it? Should I quit my day job, run the risk of foreclosure, and go to a refugee camp to help those who have left Darfur? Should I devote all my free time to nagging our government to do something? After all, what can I do?

I can send a letter. I can go to and fill out the form that will send an e-mail to President Bush. That is certainly something I can do. That is certainly something just about anyone reading this blog can do.

Doing that one small thing – sending an e-mail to President Bush – may make a difference. You cannot create a mountain of e-mail and letters without sending an e-mail or a letter. But it still doesn’t alleviate the guilt I feel when I ignore pleas for action and aid. I still feel a pang of guilt when I recycle the umpteenth snail mail request from the NPR station I listen to, or the solicitation from Doctors Without Borders, or Habitat for Humanity. But what else would I do, when I’ve already given? Or I don’t have the money this month to make a donation? There is only so much one person can do.

I think it is my perfectionism playing a guilt trip on me. That, and the weight of the Unitarian Universalist tradition of social action bearing down on me. The feeling that I should be doing more. The feeling that I should be doing more, and shame on me for not doing more.

But we can’t all be rabble rousing activists. Someone has to keep roads clean, the trains running, the lights on. Someone has to tend to the tasks that keep the world running, right?

So, I need to remind myself of this quote by Edward Everett Hale:

I am only one, but still I am one.
I cannot do everything, but still I can do something.
And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.

I cannot do everything, so I should stop thinking I can do everything. But I can do my small bits – write a letter, make a donation. That I can do, and I will.

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