Days of Gratitude, Day 10: Temper, Temper.

Yesterday I had the distinguished pleasure of waking up and being shoved onto the wrong side of the bed.

Godsdammit… the night before at work had been the night that would not end, and hey, my internet was down as I woke up, so today there wasn’t going to be a beginning.  I sat up and looked down as I do every morning, and starting back up at me was this book I bought on Christmas Eve.

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Damn you, book!  You mock me in my time of wounding!  Here I sit, bereft of online communication save my phone which gets really lousy reception where I live!  Without my WiFi I am crippled, CRIPPLED, I SAY!!

Except, I wasn’t.

Call the provider, resolve the issue.  I knew it was a suspension because in all the running around for the holidays I forgot to stop in and pay my bill.  Yes, I am one of those people who pay in-person rather than online because it’s usually easier, except when I forget to pay, and then it’s… not.  I really need to fix that.

So, what would have happened before?  Well, I would have been ripped from the get-go, I would have called and screamed at the automated phone directory which is deliberately designed to be as infuriating as possible, and then tore into the operator in self-righteous indignation.  Eventually I’d have paid the bill but only after I had given that person a piece of my mind!

What I did instead was this:  I called the company, and was pleasant.  Genuinely so.  I paid the overdue bill and my service was reconnected.  I even got the $6 reconnection fee waived.  Probably the same result I would have gotten if I had gone down the angry path, but I got here without getting myself into a fit of rage that would have followed me like a nasty cloud all day long.

I’m thankful that I’ve been learning new ways of dealing with stress and irritation.  Was I annoyed?  Yes.  Who was I annoyed with- the cable company?  A little, but mostly, at myself, because I forgot to pay the bill.  Being forgetful has been a particular trigger for bouts of low self-esteem for me.  I feel horrifically stupid when I forget things, and when I feel stupid, I get mad at myself.  I feel like others are disappointed and angry with me for being stupid and forgetful and I punish myself for it.  That’s a bad cycle to be in, but lately I’ve been able to break away from that cycle, because I am not stupid.  I’m human.  I’ve also learned to be graceful and patient with the mistakes and errors of others, because they are human too.  People who forget things or screw up now and then aren’t stupid.  Even the smartest and most successful have fucked up quite a lot.

I like not being so hard on myself.  It helps me to treat others- and life- more lightly and with less stress.

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