It's been a long time, but I once used to teach my classes and go home. I had other things on my mind then, like trying to hustle more classes to avoid falling even further into abject poverty, and limit intimidating phone calls from people I owed money to. This weekend I've been missing those days.
I am now deeply involved in many aspects of my stupid university. When I'm not teaching classes, I'm involved in the academic senate and on the senate executive committee, I do faculty rights representation for the union, I join book clubs and sometimes facilitate discussions, and I'm also involved in the AAUP. I know several faculty who do as much or more, but mainly, they do less. I understand why.
I know my level of involvement causes stress, and I know my motivation for being so involved is not entirely healthy. Anxiety seems to be self-sustaining, constantly reproducing the kind of alertness that makes everything appear to be threatening.
And then last week, two major sources of stress became serious objective threats. My anxiety level reached Threat Level Busey at once. I feel vulnerable, exposed, and low on energy. I don't want to keep having arguments in my head when I'm trying to sleep, and waking up with them raging again. I don't want this crapola affecting daily life like this. Dinner should not be a daily crisis.
I know my friends have my back. I know I have support. Generalized anxiety means that I can't trust that I have support. I can't even trust that I can support myself.