Her: Have you thought about my vacation idea?
Me: You mean the one where I go to work only on Sundays and perhaps one extra day to actually write a sermon?
Her: Yeah, like a half-sabbatical.
Me: (sigh) Honey, I can’t go in front of the board and ask them to give me something that none of them could ever even dream of at their jobs.
Her: But you need this, I need this. You are burnt out, over stressed, your anxiety is through the roof, and your depression is really bad. When are you going to take care of yourself?
Me: Yeah but…
Her: Have you gone to the doctor yet to talk about your depression?
Me: Ummm, well…
Her: You keep putting this off, meanwhile you’re getting worse.
Me: So how much money do we have. Do we even have enough money to pay the doctor?
Her: You get paid Friday. Quit making excuses.
Me: You know I want to go, I’ve already talked to doc about this once. We just haven’t had any money.
Her: This is why you need a sabbatical. You can’t keep working this hard and not taking care of yourself.
Me: How am I supposed to go ask for a sabbatical when I’m just going to quit anyways? How does that look? That’s exactly what your old pastor did. Ask for a sabbatical, take 3 months off, then quit. We’ve known multiple pastors to do the same thing. It’s just wrong.
Her: But if you don’t take care of…
Me: A sabbatical doesn’t address my main problem with working at the church. This isn’t a stress issue.
Obvious allusion to my atheism.
Her: Why don’t you take your friends seriously. We all think this is symptom of burn out. Don’t you trust us? We know you.
Me: (attempting to restrain anger) You know what? I’ve had 1 conversation with Michael, 2 conversation with old roomie, and ZERO conversations with Reese. None of that qualifies anybody to tell me how I think, how I feel, or what I believe.
Her:…what about me? Don’t I know you well?
Me: (chuckles, then instantly regret chuckling) You’re biased. You’re biased. What I believe and the decisions I make because of what I believe are going to directly effect you. Sometimes negatively. You’re not in a position to be objective about this.
Tears instantly well up in her eyes but she’s also a bit pissed. I can tell I’ve hurt her by the insinuation that she doesn’t “know” me well enough to accurately understand what I’m thinking.
I mutter something about needing to do something and I go and lock myself in my bathroom. I check my WordPress comments and twitter interactions.
She comes upstairs after 10 mins.
Her: (knock, knock, knock)
Her: When you’re finished do you want to sit on the couch with me and try that new beer [22oz] my friends brought us?
Me: Ok, that sounds nice.