I just had an amazing epiphany as I struggled to sit down, by myself, and have a few minutes of silence. I spend 8 hours a day feeling stupid every 5 minutes because I’m FINALLY training and learning the “meat” of my job. A job that I LOVE by-the-way.
I spend, on average, an hour a day doing the DC-to-the-suburbs commute; never knowing what kind of crazy I will bump into on the metro; never knowing how long I will stand in the blazing sun (or pouring rain) waiting for a slug-ride (northern VA slang for organized carpooling).
I have recently come to the conclusion that the only way I can schedule phone calls to my family and friends flung across this country, is to call them as I walk from work to the metro, or from the metro to the slug line, or when I finally get to my car for my drive home.
When I finally get home, I have a husband, a 6 year old, 3 cats, a mother, and a mother-in-law vying for my attention. The 6 year old takes point; everyone else squeezes in moments around him.
So my epiphany came as I had done my duty to everyone else with only my mother-in-law left. She needed me to show her how to use the new waffle iron. And she apologized for needing help. Cue the eye roll. But she called herself “retarded” because she didn’t know how to use it and she knew I was tired and spent.
I turned around and kind of harshly said to her, “don’t ever call yourself retarded because you are learning something new.” I explained how I spent all day feeling stupid every 5 minutes because of all of the new things I’m learning at work. But it’s because I’m still learning. I’m not stupid, it’s just new stuff. And I am BLESSED to have such a FANTASTIC teacher. That’s what started my epiphany.
I’m not used to having such a full load on my plate. I’m used to making calls when I want, for as long as I want. I’m used to a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants 30 minute drive to a shift job; not this commuter schedule to a job with 30 tasks at any given time that all have to be kept track of and worked on. To-do lists?? Phhhf, I’ve spent most of my life avoiding those, now I live and BREATH to-do lists.
My kid now has schedules and things to keep track of too. I almost envy myself of 2 years ago when I could roll out of bed around 8, maybe even 8:30, throw some clothes on us both and drive him 10 minutes up the road to daycare. I had the rest of the day to creatively avoid all of the household chores, cram a few in at the last minute, before I began my fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants 30 minute drive to my restaurant job 4 days a week.
I’m tired and spent every night because I have full plate. And that plate is full of BLESSINGS!! That plate is full of a job that I love, coworkers who make me laugh all day long; and who help me not only be a better paralegal, but a better person each and every day.
And that plate is FILLED with family and friends who love me, and care about me, and enjoy my company. And I’m so fricken lucky that they all understand that I am doing the best that I can to balance the needs of everyone. Including myself!
So I am NOT going to complain that I am tired and spent. I’m might whine a little bit when I am by myself that I just want some time to myself, but I will keep that to myself. Because in the end . . . at least I’m not living on a street corner with no one giving a rats ass about me.
Cue the epiphany mike drop. . .