This morning I wrapped up this huge post that I had to send to a company for review. It’s been hanging over me for a few weeks and once it was officially crossed off my list, I felt an overwhelming sense of euphoria. It wasn’t relief. It was more of a high – like a buzz off of the accomplishment. It overcame me and I registered right then and there that I’m a workaholic… and maybe that’s not such an ugly word.
It’s taken me a very long time to realize that being a workaholic doesn’t make me a bad mom or a bad wife. Being a workaholic doesn’t lessen any other part of me. It’s just who I am – who I was born to be. Even in high school, I was an avid list maker and spreadsheet creator. Who did that?!! Me! I’m Type-A to the fullest and in order for me to release anxiety and stress when I start to feel very overwhelmed, I make a list. It’s my coping mechanism. Work relaxes me in a sense. Again… I’ve come to the conclusion that that’s ok.
I feel like I am wired differently than other people. When I sit down and watch television to relax, I have my iPad with me so I can play a Facebook game (don’t judge me) and my phone so I can’t periodically check for emails. That’s three electronics going at once. That’s my RELAXED STATE!!!!!!!!!!!!! And I am actually VERY RELAXED at that point. I’m winding down and dozing off doing those three different acts.
My cousin’s wife once told me (a few years ago) that when her children go to school, she grabs a hot cup of coffee and sits on the couch in silence for 20 minutes every morning. I still think about this conversation. I can’t get over it! What does she do for those 20 minutes? She just drinks her coffee. No TV. No phone. No newspaper. It’s just her and her coffee. I cannot even process this as an option. I would – lose – my – mind.
But like I said, I register that we are just wired differently. And whenever I think that I am doing too much because someone gives me a LOOK or writes a comment on Facebook like “when will you ever slow down?”, I remember that conversation and remind myself that it is possible to be so completely different from another human being. So, yes – someone might not be able to understand how much I am able to squeeze in during a 24-hour period. BECAUSE TO THEM – a typical morning might just be with a hot cup of coffee while sitting on a couch doing nothing. Imagine that person watching me run around Manhattan going from one press preview to another and then coming home to cook dinner, do homework with the kids and then host a twitter party. Yes, I can see where that might look a bit overwhelming to another individual.
However, the comments still linger. And they are one-sided by the way. I never in a million years, read my friend’s Facebook updates and think, “my goodness! why are you so LAZY?” Those feelings never emerge. Instead, I think about how wonderful it must be to spend the day at the beach without having to worry about deadlines. That’s the thought that floats through my head. It’s not jealously. It’s more of a sense of pining for a more simpler time. But then I immediately think about a better way to handle social media and off I go into a mania state. My calm moments are short-lived to say the least.
Must keep swimming.
When I saw this line in Nemo, I’m pretty sure I cried because it represented my life in a nutshell. My high school graduation valedictorian said another line that I repeat in my head on a regular basis.
The shaking keeps me steady.
That is it. Right there. I need the chaos to function. I can’t explain it. I need it all. So, yes. I’m a workaholic. Yes, sometimes I feel like I’m drowning and I write posts about how I’m just looking for an exit sign or some relief, but in the end I will never get off this train.
So, if you don’t mind… I will take my coffee to go.