Wednesday, February 14, 2007

A Punch in the Face

Before anything else, I have to say "Happy Valentine's Day!" Yes. It is the dreaded Singles Awareness Day. While today was not as easy to endure as other Valentine's have was still ok. It's getting harder and harder to be patient. I was still very aware (and so blessedly reminded) of being single...but really, how is that different from any other day of the year? That's another story...not one I am interested in getting into right now. And so I move on to the blow I received today...
Today, my character was attacked. The very essence of who I am was falsely muddied and I received a punch in the face from someone who is supposed to encourage and inspire me. I went to talk with a professor about a project that I am working on, a business plan competition that I am preparing for. A project, by the way, that is above and beyond my normal studies. Instead of help and concern, I received a harsh word from my professor who proceeded to ream me for 10 minutes. I heard all about how I was a bad student. I heard all about how he doesn't understand why students wait until the last minute to do things. I heard all about how my priorities are not in the right place. I heard all about how I should be embarassed because I have not prepared enough up until this point to represent my university next week. I heard all about how he has no sympahty for students who have ample time to prepare...
I heard about a lot of stuff. The worse thing is that all I could do was stand there and cry. I hate crying in front of professors- because I hate the stereotypical "cry to get what you want." But as hard as I tried (and believe me...I tried. I tried to the point where I was doing those short gasps for breath, you know the kind you get when you really can't get control of your crying? Yeah, those), I just couldn't stop the tears from flowing. I wasn't allowed to defend myself. I wasn't allowed to explain. The tears were pent up from a million other things going on in my life right now. But all those other things in my life were mere excuses to my professor. He wasn't interested in the fact that I have been sick on my deathbed for the past week. He wasn't interested in the fact that our group is doing extra work for this competition. He wasn't interested in the fact that only half of our group is doing the work of 6. He wasn't interested in the fact that his class is not the only one I am taking. He wasn't interested in the fact that I have 50 million other things due before this competition. He wasn't interested in the fact that I feel as though everything is falling apart and it is taking everything in me just to make it through another day. Nope. Didn't care. "It's about priorities..."
I was frustrated because he wouldn't let me explain myself. I was frustrated because he wouldn't extend an ounce of grace. I was frustrated because I couldn't defend myself. I was angry because I shouldn't have had to defend myself (I didn't even do anything wrong- p.s.). I was angry because he was lecturing me on the frustrations he had with other slacker students. I was angry because I wanted to tell him off, but knew that wasn't very Christ-like. I was angry because who is he to tell me what my priorities should be? I was upset because I couldn't muster enough love for him when I know he obviously needed it the most. I was hurt because everything he was saying about me was so far from the truth. I have a million people I could line up to prove him wrong. But that's not the point. The point is that I received a punch in the face today from someone that I shouldn't have. The point is that I can't do anything about this and have to let it go.
So why do I have this overwhelming need to defend myself to other people? Why do I always find it necessary to explain myself to people? Because right is killing me that my professor has this false view of me. I can't stand it! It's driving me crazy. I want him to know the real me. I want him to know that he has the wrong impression of me. I want him to know that all of his assumptions of me are not even based on...anything. But what does that prove? If I could get him to listen to me...if I could get him to see my side...if I could get him to understand where I am coming from and actually see that he was wrong...what does that prove? That I am right and he is not? Big deal. So why all the stress over what this one professor thinks of me? It is partly because my grade for the semester lies in his hands and I want so badly to graduate with a 4.0. It is partly because I like having the image of the "good student."  It is partly because I don't want to fill some stereotype that he builds for students in general. It is partly pride...yes, I admit it. It is partly because the last thing I need is for someone to be telling me what I am not doing right.
Has your character ever been falsely attacked? Have you ever been made to feel 2 inches tall? Has it ever happened when you have done everything right and then some? I kill myself to do my best. I strive to do 110% in everything I do. I work my butt off to exceed expectations. So when I get punched in the face like this while I am doing my absolute best...well, it hurts. And then I am reminded...I should be working as for the Lord, not for man. It's only God's opinion of me that matters. God is my defender.
Please pray for me. Pray that I can forgive my professor. Pray that I can love my professor. Pray that I can let this go and truly let God handle it for me.

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