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smack dab in the middle of some burnout, yo.

Posted Aug 06 2011 12:40am

I spend a lot of time video skyping with my wonderful, beautiful, brilliant friend Ariela.  She also happens to be the uber talented graphic designer who designed my blog.  I often promise her that I will start updating my blog again.

And I do.  For two days.

And then I fall off the face of the earth.

And, as always, I have excuses.  This time it isn’t an Ironman.  This time it’s a “promotion.”  It’s in quotations because what passes as a promotion in my office is getting the same pay, same title, with added stress, heightened consequences, and boatloads more work.  I’ve been wanting this for a while.  But the grass is greener, people.  It is fucking always greener on that mother-fucking other side.

Since starting this new position, I’ve spent many hours crying, many hours obsessing over clients, many hours at the bar with coworkers.

My job is not all flowers and puppy dogs.  Ok, it’s not flowers and puppy dogs at all.  And when I come home after dealing with horrible, depressing things like murder and people drop-kicking kittens (true story) and clients dying in prison, I feel weird and guilty to turn my sights to cooking and eating and blogging about delicious food.  Because it seems so inconsequential and shallow.  Because I feel like with the job that I have, with people’s lives in my hands, I should be spending every minute working.  I feel guilty for every minute spent on myself because that is one less minute spent researching a case, investigating witnesses, talking to the DAs, prepping for trial.

Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean that I spend 24 hours a day in the office.  Or even 12 hours for that matter.  It just means that when I come home, work is with me, and I can’t enjoy my life.  I can’t enjoy my life because everything is tinged with guilt for having a life.  I may go for a run, but I feel guilty because in the grand scheme of things I should be working.  I may cook my self a delicious dinner, but I feel guilty because in the grand scheme of things, I should be working.  I end up numbing out and sleepwalking through life because I can’t handle the constant and overwhelming barrage of guilt.

I’ve always had a hyper sense of “laziness.”  Heck, in law school when I decided to get a master’s in addition to my law degree, I still felt like I was being lazy.  So, I overcompensate by working myself until I collapse.

But, it always ends the same way: a burned out, emotionally exhausted, mess of a Pen.  I’d like to say that I’m “headed in that direction.”  But I’m not headed there.  I’m smack dab in the middle of that shit. You know it’s bad when people ask you how you like your new position and you burst out in tears.  Or you spend every second of every day dreaming of a day off.

It’s not so much the position, even.  It’s the fact that I’ve neglected to care about my life nearly as much as I care about my clients’. So, begins the taking care of myself.  I honestly am no good to my clients when I’m like this because I’m tired and angry and short-tempered and oh so apathetic (but not so apathetic that I don’t feel guilty about being apathetic…note: if you ever want to know someway to feel guilty about EVERYTHING in your life, come to me.  I’m an expert.).  I wish I could write more about my job on here, I think the venting would help…but we all know what happens with that .

So, instead, I’m just going to move on and enjoy that I get to enjoy flowers and sunshine and puppy dogs and cupcakes in my non-work life.

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