I did something I've never done before: I put ME first!
Monday, August 27, 2012
The local food cooperative had a board meeting last Wednesday, and things got heated. As in, I was being yelled at, and have been heckled by an angry board member who didn't get his way ever since.
And when I got home from the board meeting Wednesday night, I threw up. At the time, I blamed it on the food and beer I had just consumed at the meeting...maybe they messed up and there was meat in it? Maybe it was too much cheese (I had a veggie wrap with cheese AND cottage cheese, not always the best idea for my digestion). But it didn't go away. My stomach hurt and cramped, and I felt nauseated every time I saw another email from him in my inbox.
These are the exact symptoms I had all the way through March. A urinalysis, blood work, ultrasound, MRI, and HYDA scan (nuclear medicine scan) all revealed that there was nothing physically wrong with me. It was stress literally making me sick to my stomach.
So when I started to have the same symptoms again, I went to talk to my parents and a couple of good friends. I just wanted to get it off my chest. And when my dad started getting offended on my behalf, I started feeling sick again. So I held up a hand, and when he stopped talking I told my parents that I had been down this road in March, and that I was going to put my health first. I told them I was going to go to the board president (who knows all about my health issues) and explain what was happening. And if she can't resolve the drama, if this board member continues to hassle me and cause problems, then I will resign.
I've felt much better since making that decision. Because the truth is, I'm a volunteer. I put in about 20 hours a week because I care about the cause, and I like what I'm doing. And the other board members put in a lot fewer hours than I do, and THAT is another issue. I always have tended to take on too much, because I CARE too much. But it's not worth my health OR my peace of mind.
If the stress gets worse, or even just doesn't go away, I'm done. I'm sorry, board, but I need to be okay! Nothing is worth making myself sick, not work...and not a volunteer commitment.