I was startled awake by a nightmare three nights ago – bolted upright in bed, hands around my neck, checking for the wetness and blood before exhaling the breath I didn’t know I was holding. I dreamed I was stabbing my neck.
After probably a few seconds had passed, I turned my Fitbit toward me, “3:55 am? Are you kidding me?!” I plopped back down onto my pillow. It was Wednesday morning, my alarm would sound in an hour and 5 minutes and I had to be at work by 5:45 am. It was the one day a week I couldn’t sleep in. It was my day to be in the office.
I’ve never had this kind of nightmare before. Maybe it has to do with the anxiety I’ve been feeling this past week but who am I kidding? I am always anxious but I think it’s been more like an irritation than an anxiety.
First of all, my annual review is coming up at work. Another year has flown by. I will begin my third year at the end of May. Annual review not only means I’ll get a raise but it also means I have to fill out an evaluation, grading myself of all that I’ve accomplished this past year. I’ve never liked giving myself a grade because what if I gave myself too high of a grade? Then I’ll probably have to set higher expectations for next year.
Last year, I gave myself all a “meet expectations”, not “exceed expectations”. I’ve always given myself a lower grade than I deserve for some reason. Maybe it has to do with confidence and self-esteem. I think I’m low on those since I’ve been put down all my life. It took me all of 1 hour to fill out my evaluation yesterday, sign it, and shot it back to my supervisor in an email.
I really hope I get a good review this year even though I can’t really think of why I wouldn’t.
Meanwhile, my mom is plotting a move to Taiwan where she’d go back to school and study Chinese. While fireworks and choir erupted “Hallelujah” in my head, another thought came to mind, “You’re going to leave me here with them?”
My mom laughed. Was that a hint of sinister I heard? “You’ll have to deal with them. They’ll call you with every little thing.” In my head, my mom sounded like the evil queen from Snow White preparing to offer Snow White the poisoned apple. My mom was offering me the poisoned apple.
I shook my head, “No way,” I said. “I’ll move out, faraway. I’ll change my number. No one will be able to reach me.” She laughed again, more sinister this time. I gulped and began to picture the scenario.
Can you help me adjust my sprinkler heads? Can you check on my unemployment status? Are you going anywhere today? Can you call the job agency? Can you drive me to the market?
I felt like I just about to scream. That’s what I’m dealing with now and I do not want to deal with this forever.
I need to calm down.
I was recommended crocheting by my nutritionist a week ago. “Give your hands something to do when you’re bored,” she said, “that way, you’re not thinking about food and grabbing snacks.”
I bought a kit last weekend and began teaching myself the basic stitches. It is true, not only am I no longer thinking about food, it helps me to calm down and temporarily drives the thought of my insanely annoying family out of the head.
For now though, I have to keep this new hobby of mine from my mom because I don’t want to hear the words, “a waste of time.”