"I wish I could go home and have a drink to relax."
That's the thought that went through my head on the way home every night this week. I didn't freak out at the thought, because a drink was not what I was after, but I did let myself sit with the thought. I wondered what was it beneath it that I was looking for. What was it about the scenario that was attractive to me? The previous week I had sat in a bar with coworkers as they closed their evening with a drink while I sipped on peppermint tea. I found the scene such a foreign feeling that I excused myself early and went to bed. I wonder if being in that setting had prompted my thoughts.
This week I have worked double and a bit more hours than I normally do. By yesterday late afternoon I had handled 350 pieces of paper. Most of them 4 times once you include photocopying, scanning, signing, double checking. They are still in a pile waiting to be filed now. All that to say it has been a very busy week. I have driven home exhausted every evening. I have never worked a Saturday in this job until yesterday. It was wonderful to leave my desk finally cleared of papers yesterday afternoon and go home.
The second night that thought above went through my mind I realized what I was looking for was some way to reward myself for the hard work I was doing. I was craving recognition and reward. So I got creative. I wanted a beta endorphin boost. I went and picked fresh veggies in my garden and dug potatoes for supper. An hour from ground to table. What a treat! Another night I got home and forced myself to put on my running shoes and went for a walk. That helped. I spent an evening with a group of friends. We did a lot of talking and belly laughing and ended the evening in prayer. By Thursday, when the thought was still rattling around in my head, I booked a massage for yesterday. A treat I have not had in several years.
And then came Friday. As I pulled to a stop at a red light there was that thought once again. I asked myself what was it I was looking for. Out of nowhere came a question,
"Has going home and relaxing with a drink ever been your experience?"
I started to laugh. Um, the answer would be no. It was never even a goal. I can't relate to it one bit. I can relate to drinking to get drunk. Drinking as fast as I can guzzle them. Drinking to numb the feelings.
But relaxing and having a drink, no. I had been romanticising an experience that was foreign to me. And with that the thought stopped harassing me. It still makes me laugh.
Yesterday I went to work early and then stopped part way through my day to have my massage (it was wonderful,I booked another one) and then went to my home group meeting where I shared this week's experience. I was so grateful to have a place where I could go and be honest and get understanding in return. I went back to the office with a lighter heart.
Now I have two days off to relax and refresh. I slept past 6 AM and soon family will be here to spend the day with us. Tomorrow I will tackle things that need to be done before work comes around again. I have a garden that needs cleaning out. There are simple every day chores to be done. Life is good.