Thursday, April 30, 2009

tapping in to faulty reasoning...

eh, today i woke up and I had gotten a full 8 hours of sleep [accidentally of course]. it was supposed to be a 5 hour nap to give me enough of a boost to get up and work on my trig assignment. but who am i to fight what my body needs? anyway, i've noticed that i'm beginning to have more mornings where i dread getting out of bed. [except real egg tuesdays. those i would break someone's legs for, jk]. i just remember waking up. looking at the alarm clock and realizing that i was running behind schedule and thinking, ya know. today is the day that's going to make or break me. i am now officially in danger of failing trig, we have a quiz today that i haven't even begun looking at the material for. i'm still behind on the assignment that i've gotten two assignments for and if i don't really buckle down i am done. then i wondered whether trig was offered in the summer [not my most rational moment, i know] and laid in bed an extra five minutes or so before i realized that i had somehow fallen into a pattern of behaving like a defeat-est. a trend that had been picking up almost every morning this semester. [it started when my friend died and gained steam with the advent of this little melodrama i've been carrying around].

to be honest, i've noticed a couple of irrational patterns taking shape. while i can't control all of the songs on the radio reminding me of an almost love that never existed, [that have tricked my psyche into this destructive attachment with this figment of my imagination that i've projected onto this poor guy], i do have control over my actions and i have done a wonderful job of not saying or doing anything stupid, but this doesn't seem as if it is enough because i'm burning off a tremendous amount of energy thinking about it, ruminating, obsessing. i should be paying attention in class and my mind goes to him. i should be studying, it goes there. i don't even miss the actual person. i think it has just become a realization that after 4 years of isolation i feel the abandonment itch kicking. you know how you have this picture in your mind of how you want things to be? of what's safe and familiar and healthy? i think i've been scripting that with people who can't live up to it, and with myself. it's hard enough for me to live up to the image that i've concocted in my head of who i should be. i can't imagine anyone else less seasoned with my expectations to live up to them. even now i'm scripting that i'm going to turn into this math aficionado and i'm losing sleep hours and spacing out because i'm just now where i need to be. i know it's the early stages and i need to be practicing more, but this mind/body disconnect makes me see myself as this huge failure instead of the strong, vibrant, multi-faceted woman i have grown to be. although i must admit, for all my brilliance and know how i feel quite lost; like i have to choose between being of importance to my community through service or alienated but doing the work that is important to me. --sigh.

i have a lot to be thankful for this semester. i have actually owned up to and faced some really serious behavioral patterns that have always seemed to get the best of me in the past. i should be immensely grateful that i have the wisdom to be able to identify when things that i am doing are not consistent with my values even if i have not been willing to fix those things right away. but we all know that's short term. i'd rather change than live with guilt; a euripidean flaw in it's own right. but lately, particularly as exhaustion has begun to set in and i find myself being dragged in a million different places, i've been having to re-evaluate what i will allow myself to feel guilty about by weighing my efforts against merit and what constitutes balance. and i have to be honest. in the real world i would be getting sleep, and the amount of work that i do far exceeds that of a normal person. i just need to make more reasonable choices about where to expend that energy so that i can ensure that my energy expenditure translates into tangible results. this morning was an interesting test of that, because i was so far behind. i really wanted to tuck my tail between my legs and cower under my blankets with my trig book and try to make sense of it. but if that would have worked, i would have done it by now, and i think i've actually tried that. so i did the next best thing. i did not skip class, even though i knew i wouldn't pass the quiz. instead, i went to breakfast, went to draper hall and worked on the assignment until 10 minutes before class. took what i HAD worked on and submitted it into my instructor's box. Asked her for clarification upon what would be presented on the quiz in a very calm manner and explained to her that i was far from being prepared and unfortunately had opted to fall asleep studying rather than stay up and try to make sense of it.

my instructor, who had seen me many a morning looking dazed and frazzled because i'd only slept for a few hours advised me to sleep. i asked her very paradoxically how that was supposed to happen when i had all of these deadlines on assignments. i knew what was going on with me, but i didn't think my other instructors would understand. anyhow, it seems as if there are plenty of other people who are struggling as much as I am and I somehow managed to rationalize that my appearance would help me in my quest for growth and character development. who knows. of all of the people i've met who are engineers and architects and such, they all seem to be pretty stable and boring people, but they don't have a lot of drama and most of them seem pretty happy and have an incredible ability to balance their lives. why wouldn't i learn balance through this process? i just think that i've been so resistant to the idea of failure so much that i find myself trying to juggle around it and dropping the ball from time to time. but if this is a safe enough place for me to pick it back up and carry on, it would be foolish to squander that opportunity.

so after my excruciating trig class in which the quiz was miraculously overlooked and assignments were pushed further back i left class and skipped lunch. i went to the library. there in a hidden corner full of dusty outdated books I found books about math theory and blah blah and yadah yadah. There wasn't a single current book in the collection. And by current I mean nothing published this century or possibly within the last two decades. There were exactly 3 books on trigonometry. The rest were labeled in the table of contents of the geometry books and I couldn't tell if I needed Euclidean, planar, or what so I just picked one trig book and two geometry based upon the simplicity of the diagrams. I started one before I came to work. Just to set the intention. So far it's a cool read. It's introduction began with a story about a baseball team and then interpersonal conflict among siblings over who does the dishes. Then it began to segway into the argument that learning how to navigate geometric proofs provides good practice into how to formulate logic, balance arguments, and minimize faulty reasoning. And who doesn't need a little more of that in their lives. I only wish I could get away with learning to do these things not for credit. [Damn grades... foiled again.]

would it be logical to argue that faulty reasoning is the foundational basis irrational behavior or other forms of mind/body disconnect? it would be an interesting experiment to research how the discipline and practice of teaching logic and math skills to women and minorities [or other math challenged or free spirited individuals] impacts decisions made and improvements made to quality of life. hmmmm very interesting....


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