Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Long Days

Once again I have made it to a Tuesday barely realizing that I had a Monday.  I did, in all fairness, sleep in quite late yesterday, but then had a big fundraising banquet in the evening.  Part of me wishes that I could see something like that banquet as Not Work.  I realize that most of the people there are not working.  However, this banquet is the sort of event where I see a ton of people from my church and herds of other ministers.  I have to be "on."  This is not time off.  And yet, it walks that fine line on which I feel kind of bad for counting it as work.  Although I'm not really sure where this score sheet is on which I tally my working hours.

I have some guilt issues, you see, when it comes to work.  No matter how many times I hear about pastoral self-care, I still have this annoying voice in my head that tells me that I'm not being an effective minister if I'm not working.  All.  The.  Time.  As a single person, I have only my dog to tell me that's ridiculous and demand my attention, and she's entirely too easy to just take along to the office.  All I know is that I hear other ministers complain all the time about how much they work.  And then I figure out from other things they say how much time they spend not working, and how much flexibility they have, and then I get really annoyed at them - which compels me to work more so that I can be absolutely sure I am not like them.

You see, I could complain that today is going to be a really long day.  In fact, at some point today, I probably will complain.  It's a late meeting night.  I will be tired and irritable, because by the end of today, I will have worked at least twelve hours, and probably more.  But the thing I have to remember is that my congregants who will be at these meetings tonight have been working all day, too.  They went to work earlier than I did.  They might have gotten to go home for dinner, but then they are back, doing the work of the church, and unlike me, not being paid for it.

I fully realize that I have some rather unbalancing workaholic tendencies.  I'm working on it.  But it strikes me as I go into this very long day that, even though it will indeed be long, I just don't have a lot of room to whine about it.  

No comments:

Post a Comment