What Battles To Fight?

Image credit: FB/Women’s Tea Time

Is it just me?  Or do other people get swamped by how many battles there are to fight?

I admit, before my family tell you, I am a stubborn, opinionated ‘dog with a bone’ at times.  I’m passionate (as you’ll know if you followed my Passions Profile Challenge a while back) and I feel strongly when I see things that I don’t think are right or fair.  When I see people being treated badly I want to jump up and down and tell the whole world that it is wrong.

The thing is though that I know I can’t fight every battle I see.  It’s actually not good for my health, mental or physical.  And if I ranted here about absolutely every battle, I suspect I’d lose readers pretty quickly.  If I fight every battle then I end up just being ignored because “she’s just at it again“.  I am probably already gaining myself a reputation that I’d really rather not have.  I dont’ want the ‘crazy’ label.  I want people to say “she makes a good point“.

Yesterday was one of those days where I was bombarded with things on social media and news sites that I just ‘had’ to fight back.  Thankfully I was a little wise and saw the pattern.  I did fight back on one issue, but I stepped away and breathed instead on the rest.  Except I was still frustrated because people were being treated badly, portrayed badly, or money was being wasted on things that just don’t seem right.  By the end of the day I was exhausted simply from having it all in my head.

Here’s a list of some of the things going around, and around in my head yesterday:

1.  Fixing children’s paddling pools gets priority in earthquake recovery in my city over people getting homes to live in.

2. One young person’s suicide is highlighted (irresponsibly in my view) by the media and mental health organisations over, and over again taking the focus away from what really matters.  She’s not the only one.  How do we handle this responsibly, with thought given to others who might read but are suffering themselves from bullying, self harm, depression and suicidal thoughts?

3.  A person labelling another as ‘sick and twisted’ (among other things) because they didn’t like their actions.  Both people are likely to have mental illnesses.

4.  Churches prioritise spending millions of dollars on ornate buildings to ‘worship God’ when (I think) they should be prioritising expenditure on feeding the poor and hungry.  This applies to governments too.

5.  A young person wants to give up the fight for her life (again) because she can’t get adequate help from mental health services.

6.  Fancy sports stadiums are more important than people who need food, shelter, safety.

I won’t go on because I’m sure you’re getting the idea.  Issues of earthquake recovery in my city leave me more, and more disturbed because individual people’s needs are not important.  Maybe I’m a biased on that partly because my needs don’t get a look in on that front either, but there are so many people much worse off than me.

And mental illness (and yes, I’m choosing to use the term mental illness rather than mental health purposely because this is making people sick… or dead), especially concerning stigma and the media’s portrayal of it just sickens me.

But for the sake of my own health I have to draw the line.  I can’t fight every battle, but I want to.  I feel strongly about all these things, and what I hate is that from each of these issues and more,  there are individuals suffering.

Today my fibromyalgia has flared up again.  Certainly yesterday was an dificult day because it had been my Dad’s birthday, but this is what fibro does to me.  The emotional stress inside converts to physical pain, brain fog and fatigue.  I know myself well enough to know that probably both things contributed to today’s reality.

So I’m wondering?  Do other people struggle like this?  How do you choose wisely what battles to fight?  How do you rest easy if you choose not to fight a battle?

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

~Dr. Seuss, The Lorax

“He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”

― Martin Luther King Jr.

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22 thoughts on “What Battles To Fight?

  1. These kind of things get to me too but I find if I listen enough I ‘loose it’ so I ignore it when I can. It’s so hard when you can’t do anything but watch and be frustrated. Not sure why the world is so unfair. It seems a lot of things are wrong in the world but how to help? I get overwhelmed just thinking about it all 😦

  2. Hey Cate,

    I loved the post and I love your heart and the passion that flows from it. Never be silenced and never let anyone or anything steal your passion or your joy.

    Always be that dog you would never try to take the bone off of 🙂
    Kind Regards and God bless you.
    Kevin.

  3. I used to fight every battle. Literally every. With everything I had in me.

    Now, after the past six-or-so years, I just get so tired. Genuinely tired, mentally, emotionally, even psychically. When I fight, it’s still with everything I have. And I wish I could tell you how I decide what to put my energy towards. I guess some things just grab me in a way I can’t ignore.

    I do miss that girl, though. She was pretty magnificent.

    1. Oh, I can assure you she is still magnificant from where I’m sitting. You haven’t lost her, she is still there. But you’re right, we do get tired and I have to find a balance and recognise what battles are important enough to fight and which one’s I can leave for others. It’s hard though.

  4. We have battles to fight in our lives and picking the right one is something I deal with daily. It’s the battle to keep positive and focus on those days when you feel like you’re hitting your head against a brick wall with something or someone.
    I love your link between the physical and mental illness. I know that if I’m dealing with an issue, it won’t just make me emotionally tired but I will always have physical symptoms too. I wish more people would make the connection.
    Another great post Cate!

    1. Thanks Carolyn. I find it interesting that for years I tried to deny any connection between physical and mental. It was like if I admitted to one then I would be denying the other. Now I’m learning through reality that isn’t the case and in some ways it can be a good thing that my body responds the way it does to mental pain. It’s another message for me to do something to alter the situation if I can.

  5. Ummm…are we like…twins or something?! Lol I am the same way in that I see terrible wrongs and burn to help make them right, or at least known. I know that a big part if BOD therapy is learning to give only as much as will not hurt you, but I would give my every comfort to fight the evils of this world. Luckily, I don’t fight many fights because I simply do not have the mental energy…but one day! I am a big believer in the saying: If you are not a part of the solution you are a part if the problem, which greatly reflects MLK Jr.s post.

    1. Maybe we are twins. I’ve got the red hair now days. LOL. I also am a big believer in that saying. It gets me everytime that I sit back on my butt and do nothing. You’re quite right that having the mental energy, let alone the physical energy is the problem and somehow it is necessary to find balance. I am out there searching for balance right now. 😀

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