How many times have I heard that expression? Just say no, heard it today about 10 times. I understand...It sounds so easy. I really wish I could do it. It is not that I can't speak those words, it is not that I don't think them on a daily basis..I tell myself to do this hundreds of times a week.
I have no problem speaking the truth...as I have stated before..it is far easier to spill the beans, than to try and keep facts in order when one lies. That I have mastered. It is drawing a line that I seem to have a serious problem with. I have limits..I know my limits, they have become far greater as I have aged. The past year has seen me reach my limit much faster. I can no longer bounce back as quickly as I did in my younger days (last year). Aging is a strange process, sometimes it happens overnight, and that is basically what has occurred in my case.
See, the past few years have been very hard, physically on me. I have worked pretty steady, with far less time off, than years previously. I would have a bad day, every once in awhile, when I felt worn out, but then I could manage for a couple of weeks, before the ache and weight would set in. I suppose that is why people my age, begin to think of retirement, and start to slow down. They just are not built to work like 35 year old folks any more. Cripes...even 50 seems young to me, right now.Now those bad days come in long stretches. I am quick tempered, and all it takes is a small bump in my daily routine, and it is just too much to handle. I set out at the beginning of my work day, all geared up..I know what has to be done, and I convince myself I can manage it. Poof...someone decides to tweak my plan just a little bit..maybe throw an added job in, that was not expected..That's it...suddenly my body starts hollering...it is not going to accept anything more! It screeches at me, I know I will pay a price for going beyond the limit, and even before I perform what has been dumped on my plate, I am beyond tired. When I do what has been handed to me, what ever energy, relaxation, personal time, that offers me a tiny bit of "Me", has been eliminated.
See, although some don't think I have a life, just because I don't go out, I don't drink, I don't socialize, I do have personal pleasures. Most of those allow me to forget my job, as mundane as it is. Things like my dogs, my books, my yard, my rest..those are mine! When I am asked to forgo the small pleasures I enjoy, I begin to suffer. When I suffer..all those around me follow suit, because I become miserable. When I go beyond miserable, and become physically worn out, I begin to despise all!
I work, mostly because, at this time, I HAVE to. I realize, without my job, first, I would not get a wage, and second, I would likely go crazy..in a nice clean house, but crazy none the less, because I do need something to break the monotony. Lately, the only thing monotonous has been work. It has taken over every single moment of my life! It has thrown drama into my days, caused stress, and required me to give up what little ME time I have.
I have tried to explain that I cannot give what is requested. It is obvious to all who see me, I am exhausted, but still, somehow, even when I have admitted I can't do any more..out of no where, someone squeezes a little more blood from the stone. I want to holler "NO!" I explain how difficult it is, how I don't like doing it, how I am tired, how I am upset, all of which is dismissed. No one else steps up to the plate, no one else is somehow responsible, no one seems to understand..I am trying to save myself.
So...today, because I said everything but No..because I made it totally clear I am very unhappy, because I was basically informed this is the way it has to be, I reached the point of no return. I have been pushed to the limit I am capable of. I cannot, and do not wish to, bounce back from this. As of now...I say NO! I will not worry about what ramifications this has in my world, because all around me, I see others who have made a habit of saying NO, and it has not rocked their world, a tiny bit. Today I will be fair to ME! I am the oldest, I have worked the longest, and the hardest (except for the semi-retired), and it is time for someone else to pick up the slack. So..when I go the extra mile tonight, what will allow me to manage it, is the knowledge that it is the very last time, I will ever forget to just say NO!!