Tuesday, October 18, 2005

This semester has been an interesting and perplexing lesson in sacrifice. I'm not sure if it's because I've become more self-aware or if it is because I'm being more selfish than I was before. Regardless, I've come to realize that there is a time and a place for sacrifice and significant costs and benefits with each sacrifice.

Perhaps that's why I've been focusing on my studies more so than any other year. I'm focused on my studies because they are all engaging and interesting this semester--the first time this has happened. It's hard for me to simply half-ass my way through these classes because I feel compelled to do beyond my best as I enjoy these classes so much. That's why, in the wake of this weekend's tournament, I've decided to place my weight and value in these classes over speech and debate. So much so, that I skipped speech today (to finish all my readings and respond to them AND study for a test and a quiz) and slightly offended my coach. And while I initially felt bad, I don't anymore. I love debate, it's stimulating and enjoyable. However, it is not my life. Sacrificing one class of speech so that I can stay ahead of schedule and get the grades I know I am more than capable of and deserve, then, seems like more than proper balance to me.

Still, I realize that I let this powerful perception of my coach get to me. I let it govern my feelings, I let it make me feel guilty. However, and this is ironic (but it is the strange and great purpose of having a brother/family around), my brother helped me realize that my coach, and any problems/issues/etc. for that matter, are only as powerful and difficult as I perceive them. I knew this, but I never realized the weight of it until now. My brother, surprisingly, helped me out. I don't feel guilty for missing that class today, not anymore. I know I did what was right for me either out of self-awareness or selfishness, and that's all that matters. I am a student first and foremost, and this...this is just another tournament in a stream of many more to come. Another issue of many more.

I refuse to let anyone tell me otherwise, especially if their intent is to make me feel guilty for a proper and beyond equivalent sacrifice. No matter what happens this weekend, good or bad, I know I made the right decision.

5 comments:

rainydayinmay said...

good for you... what a huge lesson. seriously. i catch glimpses of that truth from time to time, but don't think i have come face to face with it enough to strip away any guilt i have from certain circumstances...
what i do know though, is that you have to place your needs first, you are the only one in your life who can do that.... and that in doing that, you are not being selfish. not that you are worried about it, but it wasn't selfish- what you did... it was mature...

carebear said...

i had to smile! you have realized what's more important for you to focus more on. and remember what i told you last year about debate..lol...in a way it sounds like what you are doing that's what i did last year with changing my major!!..

Thister said...

Misty,

Thanks! Like I said, I've been debating between my actions as being selfish (totally for my benefit only) or self-aware (aware of myself in context with everything around me), and I still haven't come to a conclusion. In this particular situations, however, I would say that I am most certainly being self-aware. Afterall, it's me looking at everything else besides debate. In many ways, then, it would have been selfish of me to simply have focused only on debate and put everything else on the backburner (as it seems my coach kind of wanted). Still, there are other situations where I wonder if I'm being selfish--if I'm valuing my time, personally, more than others. It's been interesting trying to figure it out, though. And I agree with you, sacrifice through self-awareness is a huge lesson to learn in such a manner. I wish things didn't have to be this way, but they are and I will not yeild my academic career for two classes that are only worth two credits combined.

Thister said...

Sis,

Haha! You know, I figured you'd respond to this with all your analogies about "swimming along." Thanks for all you help!

carebear said...

see you know me too well...haha...of course anytime you need help :) *hugs always*

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