Back in August, Phil asked me if I would be able to prepare a slideshow presentation for the Church concert on Dec 10. Without thinking twice, or asking any questions, for that matter, I enthusiastically agreed to the task. What I knew about the presentation was that it was entitled "Past, Present, Future" - everything else was up to interpretation.
Funny. usually with all-things-church I am uberly gung-ho; I'll start and finish the task ASAP. For this...I just never really felt motivated to do it. October (yes, two months later...) soon rolled around and an Unnamed Auntie (even though this is my private blog, i still feel guilty for flaming anyone...well - except for parental ranting) comes up to me "SO, you are doing the slide show. You are a good girl! I noticed you haven't taken the photo albums from the office. Please, take them home and scan the pictures. The presentation is fifteen to twenty minutes. God bless you." When i saw the stack of photoalbums I became greatly discouraged. They're THICK. VCEFC has been around since 1975. People are photo-happy. Picture it. Two weeks later, I finally remembered to take the darn (wow, am even censoring myself. this is sad...) albums home. The next week, UA approaches me and informs me that she would like to see the slideshow by next week (Oct 23rd
). I don't give it much thought and say "okay." October 23rd
rolls around and i have yet to even open an album. UA sees me from across the room and makes an immediate bee line towards me and, of course, asks about the presentation. I sheepishly tell her I haven't got it done, "Is next week okay?" Wow, am I a sucker or what? She tells me "You have a final deadline for November 13th
." Wow, a final deadline
? I thought that kind of stress was over when I graduated...I spent the next three weeks avoiding UA...Constantly looking over my shoulder to see if she was nearby, doing everything to avert her.
A rehearsal for the Dec 10 concert took place last Sunday. I didn't have it done. I barely had it started. I already felt guilty about that. Not for "letting down" UA, or Phil, but because I know other people at the rehearsal have been practicing since May (or earlier?) for this, and I had barely put any effort into "my part." Well, I managed to shake off any feelings of guilt and have a nice lunch with my family at the Pho. UA was walking by the restaurant...when she caught sight of me in the window. I noticed because i was still "on the run" from her. She turned around with the agility of a running back and proceeded straight to our table. "STEPHANIEeeeee, where is the slide show???" Seeing that my parents are at the table, she inserts a "You are such a good girl. The reason why I asked you is because i knew you would say 'yes.' You are a good girl!"
Wow. That really pissed me off. Excuse me? But what exactly are you saying? That if i said "no", i'd be a "bad" girl? I'm sorry, but coming from someone that should be a spiritually mature person, that is pretty off-base. And what else are you saying? That you just want to exploit everyone that is already serving in the church? How about you ask someone that isn't already serving? How about you ask someone that is actually qualified to do the task?
I know I am wrong. I know i should have started earlier and actually had it completed before November. It just frustrates me so much that EVERY time she approached...no, HUNTED me down, she NEVER once asked if i needed help. I spent the last two weeks feeling so angry. Angry at myself for even agreeing to do this. Angry at AU for pestering me. I was just angry. And this anger affected the rest of me as well. For fellowship business, I'm always on top of things. Anything administrative that needs to be completed, I'll do; and I'll do it with a smile on my face and an eagerness in my soul. But last week? I was so mad about the whole slideshow situation, mad at being hunted by UA, that I just wanted to quit. For the first time ever I did not want to do fellowship work. I rebelled and didn't send out the weekly email. I just didn't want to do it. I felt so sick and tired of everything.
So yesterday, I pull my first post-bachelor's all-nighter. I was scanning and scanning all evening, all morning and putting the show together. By 8 o'clock, it wasn't ready. Even my mum told me to "just leave it and let her fix what she doesn't like" but i persisted. I wanted it to be perfect. At 1pm, I thought I was finally done. But when i tried it out (using Windows Movie Maker) on full screen, all the pictures had become pixelated - not suitable for a major production. I got so frustrated. Luckily I had good company with me, supporting me throughout the day. I think I would have snapped had it not been for Viv. So i had to find a new program to make the show. I used Picasa. It makes wonderful slideshows...but takes forever to edit and create. I was finally done at 5pm. After a nice, relaxing dinner, I finally call Phil back who had called me earlier to check on the status of the show. After telling him the length of the presentation, he informs me that, oh gollygee, it only had to be 5-7 minutes. At that point, i just wanted to keep my cool, which i did. He then informed me that they want it in powerpoint form, so that they can control the length of it. Um, okay...
Wow. Good thing I was utterly exhausted yesterday, otherwise I would have had the energy to swear, scream and who knows what else. But today, now that everything is sinking in...I'm feeling it. I'm so mad. So frustrated. I can't believe this. In all of her head-hunting, you'd think UA would have had the time to mention to me that they didn't in fact want it to be 20 minutes. Twenty friggin' minutes. Do the math. 3 seconds per slide, for twenty minutes...that's 400 a;sjklfedkjsadjkfdsajlk;afd-ing pictures in the show. I went through, literally, thousands of pictures and hand-picked those shots. and now they tell me they want it 5-7 minutes? why the hell didn't you say so earlier?
So UA sends me an email this morning apologizing for not communicating better with me. She asks me to please have the POWERPOINT presentation emailed to her by Wednesday as they are going to the church on Thursday to try it out. She tells me that it's unfortunate that the twenty minute version can't be shown at the concert, "since there are many programs in the concert, and we want to keep it within 2 hours including the intermission." Oh, but good news for me! "Your labor will not be in vain. We'll think about showing the complete version in some other occasions." Um, yay? How about NO THANKS. I don't want you to have the full version, nor do I want to make the 5 minute version. I know she'll make such a big deal about it too. She'll probably want to make some grand announcement about how "good girl" stephanie "laboured" and made the slide show. Gee, let's all give her a round of applause. NO THANKS. i don't want your gratitude. But that's the way she works. Trying to appease people with words. You know what? I don't do this for other people's adoration. If i did, i wouldn't be serving, quite frankly. I do this because of my passion for the church which God has instilled in me. If your schedule for Saturday is so tight, let me help you knock five minutes off. I'm so mad that I don't want to think about this ;alsjdf;-ing show. I don't even want to go anymore. I'm so sick of this. Any reminder of it will just make me snap. Even as I type this out, my throat is dry, i have tears streaming down my face and anger boiling inside of me. I'm not doing it. I had class tonight, and i have a class tomorrow night. I get home at 10, shower and hop straight into bed. I wake up at 5 or 6 in the morning. I don't have the time to do this for Wednesday. Besides, even if i did...i wouldn't.
I know this is my fault. I know I should have completed it earlier. It wouldn't be such a big deal. But i didn't. And I fully, completely acknowledge my faults. I acknowledge the fact that i shouldn't have said "yes" to this. I should have known my own limitations. I should have known that what was being asked, was really more than what I was told. I should have known that I have enough on my plate and I don't need this. I should have known that in doing this, I'm probably doing the church and doing God a greater disservice than not agreeing to this. I'm doing a greater disservice to my relationship with God. I'm doing a greater disservice to Daniel Fellowship. I know I'm wrong. but I just can't get over this. I'm so mad and angry and frustrated. then 10 seconds later I feel so overcome with sadness for feeling that way. I'm so upset with myself for letting this get to me so much. Dad keeps telling me that "you're not doing this for her, you're doing it for God." Yes, I know. Otherwise I wouldn't have agreed to this. But man. Even knowing that this stupid presentation is for God. Even knowing that...it's not enough. I just don't feel motivated enough to do it. And that's what makes me so feel so sad. I don't give a damn that I let UA down. I don't give a damn that I let Phil down. I don't give a damn that this makes me look pretty irresponsible and unreliable. I'm upset that I let God down. That all this anger is turning me into a bad person. That everything i've been working so hard to accomplish in my walk with God is gone. That the love that used to fill me is gone. that all i can do when i think about this is be angry and swear. That i've lost whatever righteousness i had.
I've learned my lesson. I'm never going to make this mistake again.