One would think, after all my years of work on myself, that my ego and my programming would have a difficult time creating chaos within me and my life. Sadly, I am still a work in progress and, even sadder, both my ego and my programming are alive and well, sneaky as ever.
Do you ever create scenarios in your head? You know, situations you dread facing so you plan what you will say and/or do when that time arrives. I’ve been delaying one such situation for the last ten days. Thursday night, my ego decided I should lose a LOT of sleep over it.
What’s really ludicrous about most of these kinds of situations is that they really are quite trivial most of the time, but programming, past experiences, and ego make it a very big deal – of grand importance. That veritable “Making a mountain out of a mole hill” syndrome. Our stress level quickly rises and the promise of sleep evaporates.
I’m a late sleeper, most days. Thursday night, my sleep evaporated at 4:48 a.m. when my ego dialogue kicked in. No matter what I tried, my ego dragged my focus back to the event I knew I would be facing on Friday. No relaxing music, no aroma, no deviation of thought to another subject was going to stop my ego’s obsessions with this matter. So, the seconds, minutes and hours ticked by until the normal time of my awakening arrived.
So what was this event of monumental importance? To be honest, it’s rather embarrassing now that it’s over. You’ll probably get a good laugh out of it.
I’ve been having trouble with my internet since the last week of August. Living in the boonies, DSL is the best we can do for now. Anyway, it started dropping our connection on a regular basis. So I called our internet provider. After talking to a non-person for an unacceptable length of time, I was finally connected to a real person. He tried his best to be helpful – running tests, asking questions, etc. Finally, he felt a visit from a tech repair person was called for, so he set an appointment for that Friday.
Friday afternoon, the tech repair guy came. After checking to make sure it wasn’t my modem, he changed the wire to my modem, ran some more tests and felt he had it fixed, saying he would call me on Monday to see how things were going. Not even a half hour after he left, the internet dropped me again and it continued to drop me through the weekend. When I received his call on Monday, I told the tech guy it was still dropping us just as it had been before his visit. He said he felt it was the line between the phone box and our jack and we would have to get it replaced because they didn’t do that work anymore. I thanked him, thinking “Yipeee.”
Did I mention I live in the boonies? Yea, well, it took me days to find someone to come and replace the wire. Guess what? That didn’t fix the problem! So now what? (Feelings of frustration, helplessness and anxiety begin.)
I really hate calling my internet service provider. Besides the fact you always have to wade through their automated system before you get to an actual living, breathing person, there’s the fact that you could get someone who doesn’t speak English well. I began to dread the thought of having to make another call to them. I do have a rather busy life, even though I don’t hold down an outside paying job, so I used that to delay making the call.
Ten days passed. I knew I couldn’t delay this forever. I so wished there was another way. I could feel my ego dancing about how helpless “we” were because “we” couldn’t fix this due to lack of knowledge. That meant being dependent on people I didn’t know to be honest and fix it for me. My ego wasn’t happy about that. Too many people had let me down throughout my life. Then started the “What ifs”. You know, what if no one will fix it? What if they all just keep passing the buck? What if this is the way my internet will be from now on? What if I have to go through all the time, trouble and expense of getting a new internet provider? And on and on it went, ad nauseum.
I had just kept pushing it out of my mind. When I did, I slept. That is until Thursday night. I knew the time had come when making that call had to happen. So Friday was to be the day. I went to bed and slept….until 4:48 a.m.
I wish I could describe the torture I put myself through. There are no words that will describe it. If you’ve ever done this to yourself, you understand. Why do we do that to ourselves?
What’s sadly humorous about it is that the phone call to them went well. Even on four hours sleep, with a prefaced apology to the customer service rep – in case I became less than nice, I was able to relay all that had happened and continued to be happening. He ran an enormous amount of tests, checking everything from his end that he could, and finally making an appointment for another visit from a tech repairman for Saturday.
Is my internet fixed? Well, the jury’s still out on that one, but I have my fingers crossed. What’s even more important is the huge lesson that was brought to my awareness about how I react when something is beyond my control. Like Pavlov’s dog, I go into my own form of salivating when something unexpected happens. I have work to do on how to become comfortable with relying on others when my own knowledge won’t take care of whatever needs doing. That’s a tough one for me, doable, but tough.
Trust is one of the tenets of my faith. I usually trust people until they give me a reason not to trust them. However, there have been a great many people, in my past, who have given me good, solid reasons not to trust them. Unfortunately, that then becomes part of the programming the ego falls back on in doing what it considers to be its job of keeping “us” safe. Time to drop some baggage, scratch the record, and learn to give people the benefit of the doubt again. Not everyone is out to hurt me, use me or abuse me. Time to teach my ego to take a breath and believe that “we” are safe until there really is a reason to believe otherwise.
I believe I will find a new partner to dance with…