The other day, someone told me that I am stubborn. I disagree with that assessment. In my twisted brain, the term “stubborn” means “unyielding,” and I am not that. I’m willing to adapt and compromise where a stubborn person might not. What I am is determined. I’m resolute in what I want, and I will work diligently towards a goal. Sometimes I work so unwaveringly that I acquire tunnel vision and am unable to notice what’s going on around me that might require me to adjust my plans. It’s not that I’m unwilling to change them. I simply am unaware that I should.
Two and a half weeks ago, I got a cold. No big deal. I have kids. I’m used to it. I got over it and life marched on. Then, about a week ago I thought I might be getting a sinus infection. Sometimes you can get over a sinus infection without using antibiotics, though, so that is what I determined to do. I was going to beat this thing without seeing the doctor. No antibiotics for me. End of story.
One, two, three days went by and I tried to ignore the congestion, headaches, tooth pain, earaches, and dizziness. I rationalized it all away, telling myself that the symptoms were improving. I was willing myself to be well, and it was going to work. No questions. On days four and five, on little sleep and with a fair amount of misery, a small doubt hovered in the corner of my brain. But, determined gal I am, I kept right on doing the same old thing I had been doing. No relief. It was on day six that the dreaded thought occurred to me: maybe I should see a doctor? I’d taken a meth lab full of Sudafed, and my head still hurt. Today, on day seven, knowing I would be leaving the state tomorrow for our family trip and not wanting to spend another three days in relative discomfort, I caved and went to the doctor. Guess what? Sinus infection diagnosis and fourteen days’ worth of wretched antibiotics in my future. So much for beating this thing myself.
There is a time for stalwart determination, for unfailing attention to a predetermined goal. I would guess that I went about four days beyond reasonable determination with this sinus infection situation. So, does that make me stubborn? Some might say so. I prefer to think I got so wrapped up in my goal of healing myself that I refused to notice the signs that were telling me to let go. This is not the first time that I’ve done something like this. Sometimes it takes me far too long to adjust my field of vision to see the whole picture. I like to think we all do this on occasion, trek along behind that dangling carrot without another thought. The trick, though, is to look past the end of your nose once in a while and see beyond the carrot so you can adjust your trajectory and avoid making an ass out of yourself.