Please excuse my long absence, but let me assure you that everything is fine. Well, sort of.
The last time I blogged, I was getting to ready to have surgery and our youngest daughter was going to have surgery as well. Also during that time, my employer was asking everyone to come back to work in the office starting July 6th.
It is now late August. I’ve completely recovered from my surgery; in fact, I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome. I was out of the soft collar and back to work two weeks after my surgery. This week I started strength training again. Other than a scar on my neck, and hardware that you can only see on x-rays, I’d never know that I had surgery.
Kayla also had a successful surgery. The tumor was safely removed from her cyst and her cyst was preserved. The tumor is benign, which is wonderful news.
In the meantime, I’m trying to transition back to going into work every day. Let me just apologize in advance to those who weren’t able to work from home during the pandemic; this part of my blog is going to sound like privileged whining. But this is my life right now, and these are my feelings and after talking to some co-workers recently, it sounds like a lot of people are having the same struggles.
I worked from home from the very beginning of the pandemic and as I’ve said before, I thrived in the WFH environment. Most of my work is done on the computer, anyway, so I was able to remain productive remotely at home. I loved being home with the dogs. I felt more productive, mainly because I think I didn’t have a lot of the distractions that you have at work, but also because I enjoyed a better work/life balance because working here at home allowed me to also get more done around the house when I was in between work duties. Much of my work is waiting on others to respond; I can’t proceed until I hear back from someone. Logistically, most of the people I work with aren’t in the same office, so I communicate via email. I work with busy clinicians and researchers and so I don’t always get a response right away, so I wait….and wait…..Depending on how busy I am, this isn’t always an issue because there is always another project to concentrate on. But sometimes that’s not the case and then I’m just sitting in a holding pattern with nothing to do. When I work at home, I can do a load of laundry or empty the dishwasher or go outside with the dogs for a quick game of fetch while I’m waiting to hear back from someone.
It sounds great, right? It was and I got to do this for about 15 months, although I did have to go into work 1-2 days a week and that was okay; I felt like it was a workable situation. I got the best of both worlds – put on adult clothes, drive to work, and personally interact with other adults; but also, I got to stay home and work in my t-shirt and yoga pants and didn’t have to do a commute or pack a lunch. Even though I was still anxious and stressed with a pandemic going on, I felt happier and more satisfied with my job.
But, of course, I knew it was going to come to an end at some point. The COVID numbers were starting to go down; people were getting vaccinated, and life seemed like it was going back to normal, so I knew going back to work in-person was inevitable.
It was great seeing my co-workers again. It was great to be able to go out to eat at a restaurant and shop at a grocery store without wearing a mask and knowing that we were okay because we were vaccinated.
I say WAS because the COVID spread is increasing due to the Delta variant. We’re being asked to wear masks again. Now we have to worry about breakthrough cases. It just feels like this is never going to end. It’s hard to focus at work. It’s hard to stick to a healthy diet. Some nights it’s hard to sleep. I had gone back to watching the news without too much angst, but the anxiety and fear are back. There’s so much horrible shit going on in the world and there are just a lot of terrible things being said to each other and I. Just. Can’t. Deal.
But it’s fine. I’m fine. Everything is fine.
I try to focus on the things that are good. My husband – I mean seriously, if we managed to not kill each other during this pandemic, that’s saying a lot! We still enjoy each other’s company and I don’t know how I’d manage to get through any of this without him.
The dogs bring me so much love and joy. They give me something to focus on other than the crazy shit going on in the outside world. If everyone could be more like dogs, this world would be such a better place.
And I’m so grateful that our kids are close by so that we can spend time together. I can’t imagine getting through all of this if they were hundreds or even thousands of miles away.
I know that I’m not alone in my feelings. I talk to others who feel the same. I read articles about how what we’re feeling is normal. It doesn’t make it any better, but it is comforting to know that we are all struggling together, as fucked up as that sounds.
That’s how everything is going right now. I’m trying not to eat my feelings in junk food or drink too much wine. Now that I can do normal workouts again, I’m trying to get back into a healthy routine of working out and eating healthy.
But it’s hard.
Some days I do well; other days I’m eating my weight in Goldfish crackers, you know?
If you’re out there struggling, too, I see you and I’m sending a big virtual hug. We’ll survive this.
I’m going to go get some sweat therapy now on the spin bike that we added to our home gym. That’s a whole ‘nother post, but let me just say that it was a great investment!
May your glass always be full,