M and I typically take our vacations in September through December. The rest of the year I am pretty much at my desk unless it’s a holiday, I’m sick, or have some sort of medical-related appointment. Mostly I don’t mind, because the fall is typically nicest in the west coast places we choose – typically Portland in September (meet running friends and crew a race up there every year), then Disneyland or SoCal in October, Monterey at Thanksgiving. The last couple of years, i.e., since we bought our home, we have been home for in December blowing our Christmas decorations bling budget and hosting our friends, the kids’ friends, and random strangers we meet that happen to be in town for the holidays. It’s a fun time of year.

This year, we mixed it up a bit and it feels as if I am gone for a lot of September. I am taking off Friday and Monday for the Reno Championship Air Races (M loves this event and we’d be there now if he had his way), then back for Tuesday through Friday next week, and then off for my week in Portland. Because of such much time away from my full-time job in such a short period, I’m stressed and dreaming about being at work when I am sleeping. Not the most peaceful rest. 

In the middle of this vacation-laden month, I had scheduled a dental work visit, a consultation with an orthodontist, and my annual mammogram. Yes, I think my brain fell out when I was making appointments … which have all now been rescheduled for October, when I expect to be in town and working. 

It seems so crazy to me that I let the idea of vacation overwhelm me and make me so anxious. The office is not going to burn down in my absence. The staff are capable and will manage without me in residence. Really, if it is a crisis, I have a cellphone and a laptop and probably an iPad available. But in the years I have worked there, nothing so awful has happened. I just like my desk and office to be neat and orderly while I’m away, and right now my desk looks like a tsunami hit it and the rest of my office like an earthquake has struck. I just have to stop being such a Type A control freak and just let it be. The file boxes will get moved. The desk may be 2 feet deep in paper but at least it is relatively organized. ALL that stuff will still be there when I get back.

Now if I could just get my brain to understand that and go to sleep at night and not be awake and making to-do lists while I am trying to rest.

2 thoughts on “Pre-vacation stress

  1. I’m just like that… we get 2 weeks of paid vacation at work and 7 paid holidays. Unless I’m dead sick (like the time I was on my 6th day with bronchitis) or I cannot get out of the house (hello, 2ft of snow!), I’m at work. I feel for you, having so many appointments during your vacation time… I do feel anxiety before, during and after vacations. Everyone I talk to think it’s pretty normal. Isn’t that odd? That said, let a bit go to the wind and work itself out; most of the time I overplan and it stresses me extra. Taking it easy and going with the flow makes me feel better.

  2. It is so sad that we view our behavior as “normal.” It will be fine, I’ll just be a basket case until Thursday at 3 p.m., at which time I will declare myself done and put it away until I return. And the sun will still rise and set, the rest of the office will continue. It’s crazy that I get so wound up.

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