The weight of (my) responsibility is something that I handle quite well-ish 82% of the time.
That is to say, I am upright and can speak to you about it with some level of professionalism. You may not even know that I sometimes find it a bit suffocating.
It is just 18% of the time that I need to consider a half an Ativan, deep breathing exercises, sobbing hysterically on my bed, or getting on an airplane. (Vodka is no longer on the list of options.)
I am always aware that there are things that the infrastructure of this country literally won't allow for; certain injuries that cannot be dealt with quickly enough - or at all. I am always aware that my phone can ring any time day or night and something medically intense is happening and staff will be looking to me to come make the call about what to do. I am always aware that if nurses or midwives quit or don't show up, those shifts are going to need to be covered. I am always aware that while birth can be made safer, it is never ever risk free and until a Mom and baby are about 24 to 48 hours out, things can turn south without warnings or signs in advance. When that happens, the decisions fall to just one or two of us. I am always aware that situations here can change on a dime. (Or a gourde for that matter) One minute you might be sitting in your truck totally in control and thinking the day is going to be normal, and the next some huge thing is unfolding before your very eyes in traffic. (Recently KJ and I drove up upon some sort of weird situation - it equalled two guys being killed by the cops. The dead men were laid across one another in an X shape in the intersection to make a statement. The statement to me was, "Holy Cow, this place is unpredictable and sometimes freaky!" I think to others it maybe meant something else. Anyway, we managed to be there at the wrong time and saw the human X display.)
So, on the days where I am operating out of the insanely overwhelmed 18% I really do need to talk to myself about calming the heck down and just taking things one at a time as much as that is possible. (And also, just realizing most of this is not within my control in the first place so I try to remember I don't have the option to fix most things.)
Yesterday was crazy. Nothing terrible, just one situation after the next. I got into it with our security guard and from there it just continued to be conflict and challenge. By the time 4:30 arrived and it was time to go pick up my sister from the airport I was fried.
Troy came with me to the airport, because he is a wonderful human and he has a sixth sense about when I might snap. Perhaps he wanted to be the driver, in order to protect us all???
On the way home I asked him to stop at the store. I wanted to run in and buy apples and bleach. I planned to get the gross yellow stains in the armpits out of a few of my white t-shirts. The apples have nothing to do with that.
I got in the store, saw that the only apples they had were the gross kind. I kept walking and realized I did not know what the other thing I wanted was anymore. I went up and down a few aisles to see if my old-lady brain would kick it up a notch and maybe I'd remember. Finally I had to admit I was going to wander around aimlessly unless I asked Troy. I called Troy from inside the store. He answered from the parking lot and reminded me, "You are there to buy bleach, Tara."
When I came out of the store Troy and my sister waved obnoxiously at me from the truck, told me their names and treated me like an Alzheimer's patient.
It's the new shtick, mocking my non-functioning short term memory.
Unfortunately, I always give them more material.
We pulled out of the parking lot and I couldn't find my phone. We pulled over and I searched my purse. Troy called my phone. No ring in my purse. I went back in the store and talked to the cashier of the line I was in. She said she had not seen it. I asked at the service-desk of the store. Everyone was helping the forgetful old lady find her phone.
I put my hand in my purse again to grab a pen to write down my information if it was found ... and VOILA, turns out it was found.
Why am I here again?