Day 264 - Dear SCE...
So I had a day yesterday...and the day before.
Southern California Edison needed to do replace some poles in my neighborhood. Fine. Thanks. Please.
They informed me via letter that I would be without power yesterday for one day. Ok, got it.
Then they showed up Tuesday. No notice. No power. Just there occupying my driveway. This resulted in me being unhappy.
I had been up since 1:30 am to get my kids to LAX to fly to see their dad. I was tired and when I got home I had work to do and needed to be on a zoom call in like 20 minutes. Well, that wasn’t going to happen...
I raced around grabbing the dog and booked it over to my parents house, ran in and desperately set up my zoom call. And I remained there for the bulk of the day working from the floor of my parent’s guest bedroom. Not super convenient, fun or cool. But hey, at least it was over...the job complete.
So imagine my surprise yesterday when my neighbor texted me on my hike to tell me we were without power again...
And so ensued another clusterfuck of a morning with me scrambling all over the place trying to get my work day organized at the last minute. Fielding texts from my tenants wondering what the hell was going on now as they were super inconvenienced the day before since they both had online work or an interview.
I was pissed. I mean really pissed. I might have called them and gave them a piece of my mind. I might have demanded things. I might have raised my voice. I didn’t swear at them...but I wanted to. I did say that I was sorry to the person unfortunate enough to answer the phone. I didn’t say sorry to the supervisor that I demanded to speak to that communicated super clearly that she didn’t give two fucks about my anger, lack of power or that I was calling. She was super good at communicating the company customer care policy: pay your bill, we will do whatever the fuck we want. Oh, and we will not hold up our end of the contract and fail to maintain shit and cause lots and lots of pain, heartache and trauma. When I hung up the phone, I might have said, “I hope you get sued to the point of becoming a public utility - you suck!”
Ok, so not a good start to my day.
I haven’t been that mad in a long time. I used to rage like that all the time. I would just lose my shit and off I would go...over the edge. It was both liberating and disappointing. Liberating in that it felt good to get it out. Disappointing in that I didn’t know that it was in there... I didn’t know that I had this pent up anger that poured out of me yesterday. Why?
Sometimes I think that I use spiritual principles to deny my less than stellar feelings. I have all these sayings that help me let shit go and move on. But apparently, there has been this seething undercurrent that I remained largely unaware of until yesterday when it came raining down all over some poor woman who unfortunately works for SCE. Totally misplaced. Totally not who I want to be today.
In short, I was an asshole. About 10 minutes after hanging up on SCE, I was disappointed in myself. I was kind of horrified at how much I let something relatively small set me off. Totally old behavior but it wasn’t because there it was in my present. Fuck.
So I did what I could. I saw that I was off kilter. I saw that I was in need of an inventory. I saw that I was not spiritually fit...my usual practice of pause was just not available to me...then I marveled at how much I practice pausing today. How often something vexes me and I do not react. I wait, think it over and then respond. I do this most of the time so what happened yesterday?
It hasn’t been 24 hours yet so I am sure I will get more information about this...but for now I think for me I got to see how much the last few months have worn me down. How much the uncertainty has fucked with my psyche. I know that there is no ground..that life is uncertain but electricity, come on now! It was just a blow that I couldn’t manage yesterday. Pretty immediately following, I had a hard time coming up with what the big deal was...I mean really. It wasn’t that big of a deal...and I was totally embarrassed that I lost it.
Emotional benders are things that I can no longer afford. I can’t do it. It makes me feel like shit and offers me nothing in the moment. I was relaying this to a friend, and she said “write about it now while you are so mad!” Instinctively, I knew, no, do not do that. That will just continue the rage and that is no bueno for you.
I almost didn’t write about SCE and their lack of customer service at all today but really they were just a good story for me to tell you all that I am tired and a bit worn out. I didn’t know that until yesterday when I acted like a nut job on the phone...while hiking no less! Jeez, Erin, WTF?
So there you have it. I was an asshole yesterday. I didn’t make any room for SCE or their employees or anything. I just held them to my own impossible standard and then let them have it when they failed to meet my expectations. I have been here before... a lot.
So I write today not to tear down SCE like I promised yesterday. But to realize that I too am like SCE. Sometimes I totally screw it up and inconvenience a lot of people and refuse to be accountable for my actions. Sometimes I am just a jerk. So I make this public apology to the two women unfortunate enough to talk to me yesterday. I give some grace that just like me SCE is doing their best and sometimes, just like me, their best, sucks.
So I begin this new day a little more aware of my limitations. I see where I am struggling and foundering. I see it and now can begin to unpack it. And that seems like turning a corner on who I used to be and moving toward who I want to be...again.