Part of me loves being at home everyday. I get up to eat, put on some comfy clothes, turn on the internet, fire up the laptop and ta-da, I’m at work.
Prior to the pandemic, I got up at 6AM or before, allowed time to fight the morning rush and, just maybe, make it to work by 8:30AM. I dreaded the obligatory “Good Morning”, but would chat with co-workers after getting settled. Some meetings would drag on, others enjoyable. I had the freedom to take the long route to the ladies’ room, stop at the drop and chat with workers in other units.
Now I have the freedom to pet my cats, meetings are on Skype, or ZOOM, or TEAMS, while I look out my front window. I try to listen to my podcasts while I work on projects or data analysis, but they just don’t sound the same without the sound of cars in the background. I get to eat at my kitchen table, but it doesn’t really feel like Me-time the way my lunch break used to, when I could sit somewhere anonymously or I would have the occasional lunch with a friend.
Part of me loves the distance and perceived independence of working from home. But the other part of me that dislikes the stupidity of other rush hour drivers, misses driving my car while listening to podcasts and playlists. Kind of like doing my work yet laughing at a co-worker’s comment, or the shared dread of yet another meeting in real time. 🤦♀️🤣🤬
It’s funny that you can miss so many things with which you have a conflicted relationship.
In response to the Daily Prompt, “Toot Your Horn“, Most of us are excellent at being self-deprecating, and are not so good at the opposite. Tell us your favorite thing about yourself.
My favorite thing about me is that I am not afraid to do things by myself. This started at a very young age. I was an only child for the first three years of my life and, even though my parents played and read to me, there were no kids on my blocks. Until I went to pre-school at almost five years old, I was only around other kids if my family when to a public place, such as the park or the shopping mall, or if we went to visit my cousins (three are older than me). I did many things as a child on my own, such as build with clay and play-dough, coloring, play with my dog, invent stories about my stuffed animals, and listen to my record player.
As I got older, as I have mentioned in previous posts, I only had a few friends and none of them on my block. Luckily, they were walking distance when I was considered old enough to do so with permission. When I was at home I either played toys or games with my brother, read books, or watched television. Sometimes we would go to the park to play basketball or we would throw the baseball around in the yard. When kids did move in across the alley from us, they were boys my brother’s age.
I started playing tennis at age 8 and I got to be around other kids when I went to group lessons, but they lived in other areas and often knew people in the group already. Even though I was fairly outgoing around my family, I was pretty shy and nervous around people I didn’t know. Although I have mostly gotten over the nervousness, I am still shy as an adult despite working in a people-centered industry. I did get to know a few people through tennis but I would call us practice partners rather than friends.
As an adult I have done many things on my own, including go to concerts, movies, shopping, out to eat, visited museums, travelled to other places to visit friends and family via bus, and lived by myself. Some of this took place in my pre-Boyfriend days but I have no problem doing these things when he is at work or tied up with other tasks. I often take my hour-long lunch break at work by myself so I can walk, run errands, make phone calls, or just be because I am otherwise in an office with 7 other people and in frequent interactions with customers by phone or in person. I have heard comments from people over the years who are shocked that I am not only ok doing these tasks alone but that I sometimes choose to do them by myself. This allows me to decide what I want to eat, if I want to listen to music, do I want to change course and go somewhere different that I originally planned for, and to just relax without having to choose my words wisely or having to agree with something (food, an opinion, etc.) in order to appease the other person. Sometimes we all just need a little time to ourselves in order to get back to business/life in a productive manner.
I am not opposed to socializing with others but, if you have ready any of my posts, you can understand how socializing can get complicated for me – I am as different from others as I can be alike, and my opinions do not always line up with those around me. Plus, I need time to recharge after my people time, a somewhat introverted tendency that I have started to attend to more than in the past. I like to think that I am independent, which allows me to grow and learn and discover before taking in the world around according to other people.