First, this is very true.
There’s a lot I’d like to say, but I’m short on time now I work four full days a week. I sent my boss an email apologizing again for my mistake last week. She said she was just trying to make me aware that I should see her first before talking to other staff members about rota changes, as this has caused serious problems in the past and that she was sorry if I was anxious about it (I hadn’t mentioned the anxiety). I now have my time off in lieu sorted for the chaggim (Jewish festivals), although the OCD keeps making me double-check the dates because I’m worried I’ve got them wrong. Sigh.
I spoke to my rabbi mentor about Jewish new year resolutions. (To clarify, my rabbi mentor is someone I’ve known since my university days where he was the Jewish chaplain; he isn’t the rabbi of the shul (synagogue) I currently belong to or the one I’m hoping to move to.) He said I shouldn’t push myself too hard and I should just focus on one or two key areas. I think improving my mental health (depression and social anxiety) is the main task for this year just as much as it was for last year, even if that doesn’t seem ‘religious’ (although it is). In terms of more overtly religious things, I am aiming to try to study one Mishnah a day on average (some days more, as I study on the train on work days and I may get the time, some days less, when the depression is bad or I want to study other things… I’m still not sure how this is going to work out exactly) as well as having kavannah (concentration) in prayer for the first paragraphs of the Shema, the Amidah and bentsching. Anything else would probably be pushing myself too far at a time when I’m under a lot of new stress (particularly if I go back to dating soon), although I’m glad that I’ve sort of ticked the three boxes of the three things that the world stands on according to the Mishnah in Pirkei Avot (in the name of Shimon HaTzaddik): Torah study, divine service (prayer in the contemporary context) and acts of kindness, albeit assuming dealing with my mental health can be considered an act of kindness if I am the main beneficiary.
I mentioned dating and I’m still not sure what to do about that. I’m very tempted to see if the shadchan (matchmaker) who deals with people with health issues can help me, but I’m still worried she only deals with Charedi people and only with physical, not mental illnesses. I suppose the worst that can happen is that she turns me away. More pertinently, I wonder how sensible it is to let myself be set up only with people with issues, to some extent in case I can’t deal with them (in which case I shouldn’t expect anyone to deal with my issues), but more because of fear it plays to my desire to be a white knight and ‘save’ a woman who probably doesn’t see herself as needing or wanting saving. Regarding the former point, I stayed with my ex for a long time after her undiagnosed issues came out and I only left her because she was refusing help while increasingly hurting me. Regarding the latter point, I have no idea what to make of it and would probably have to try it and see what happens. I do wonder if I’m ready to date seriously for marriage though. I’m not quite sure how I could tell. I certainly need to wait until I’m more settled with my longer hours and past the chaggim. On days like today I’m happier with myself than I’ve been in the past and not really lonely, but that doesn’t say very much. I feel I want to give to someone, but I have such little experience of anyone accepting anything from me that it is hard to tell if I am willing to do it enough. I am happier when I’m seeing someone who I think likes me, but I’m not sure that that really proves anything.