Taking Out the Trash

Today, I swallowed all my pride and dropped a class.

I could tell you the long story as to why, but I’ve been trying to do so for an hour now, and I just can’t get it to come out. So I’m taking that as a, “Leah, keep your mouth shut,” and moving right to the end.

“Giving up” is not in my vocabulary. And while I dropped this class because of problems with the professor rather than an issue with my grade/the course’s content, I still can’t help but feel like I’m quitting.

Basically, here’s what happened:

The professor was a jerk, and he constantly bullied me for the silliest of things. He made my life miserable — made me always feel like such an idiot — and he did it on purpose. Just the other week, he finally crossed the line, which is what decided that enough was enough and I would be withdrawing.

I know I’m simply refusing to be treated poorly, but the competitive part of me (which is basically every ounce) can’t help twisting it around to say, “Man, Leah. You can totally stick it out and not take it personally and finish the class. You know you can get through the semester without letting it affect you. So why are you dropping out?? Suck it up and deal with it! If the rest of your classmates can, then there’s no excuse for you.”

Too bad the rest of my classmates aren’t also being targeted…

Ugh, I don’t know. It’s really hard for me to accept that I’ve withdrawn. But at the same time, doing so makes me happier than I’ve been in a long while. I mean, sure, I’m strong and can figure out a way to handle the crap he throws in my way, but at the same time, I am only human. And a person can only take so much.

My mother said it perfectly one night about a month ago when I broke down crying in the car. She had picked me up from work, and everything that was happening at school just suddenly overwhelmed me, causing me to sob in the passenger seat for at least an hour. We simply sat there as I cried and she talked, consoling me and telling me how much better I was than him. She said over and over that I just needed to drop that class, and I would finally be happy again.

“You always amaze me at how nothing ever shakes you,” she said. “But sometimes, it’s okay to be shaken.”

Of course, I didn’t listen to her back then. I simply nodded my head and cried some more, thinking deep down inside that I was merely being dramatic; I would eventually get through it.

But it turns out that I wasn’t, and I didn’t. Once again, this professor knocked me down, and while I know I could have gotten back up and kept on going, this time around, I just really didn’t want to.

And that’s okay. What I’m learning right now is that sometimes, giving up and being done are really the best things for you. Some stuff just isn’t for everyone, and there’s no point breaking your back trying to stick it out and make it otherwise. Instead of wasting all your time and energy on such a fruitless endeavor, it’s better to just call it quits and start doing the thing you really love, because that’s the only way you will ever be happy.

You just need to keep in mind that at the end of the day, nothing lasts forever, and your health and well-being — both physically and mentally — are most important. So whatever’s interfering, get it out of your life. You’re not giving up; you’re just taking out the trash.

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