More challenges, less brain cycles

posted by Jeff | Thursday, May 19, 2011, 11:19 PM | comments: 0

I'm feeling totally off balance lately. I think Diana is to an extent as well. It seems like we're both exhausted all of the time. It's not that we don't have any spare time, because certainly we spend a couple of hours in the evening unwinding, playing video games or knitting, but it seems like life has us gasping for air a bit.

The biggest thing at home is that Simon is starting to really challenge us. He's at a weird point, because his mobility is very high, we can observe him solving problems with his toys, and he's just all around becoming an active little boy. He's also at a stage where communication is difficult, and even frustrating (in both directions). He's starting to sign "eat" and "more" in contextually appropriate ways, but he clearly wants to tell us when he's tired or he's constipated, but doesn't know how. And while he's no stranger to being angry, he doesn't know it when he sees it from us. For example, he recently started just whacking us in the face, and when you tell him sternly that he shouldn't do it, he thinks it's funny. Consequences and cause and effect just aren't things he can't grasp yet. This will make for a couple of difficult months, I suspect.

I'm also leaving work exhausted mentally. I wouldn't say that anything I'm doing is hard, but it takes a lot of work to stay mentally focused to accomplish what I'd like. Aspects of the culture in my new group are not as agile as what I'm used to, so some of the things that I push for require a lot of justification. It's hard to justify something you might have accepted as the ideal scenario years ago, because as time goes by you take for granted that you already had that exercise. What I do remember about the exercise is that we had to do stuff the established way before we could see the benefit of the agile way.

The work stuff will resolve itself by just getting into a cadence, even if it's not one that's as fast as what I'm used to. I work with a lot of smart people, they just have different experiences. Eventually we'll reconcile the experience, and hopefully draw from other successful groups around the company to find a good fit. I'm not down on any of it, and overall pretty optimistic, I just don't want to think about it once I'm home!

I'm also wasting a ton of mental energy on the house I don't live in. It looks horrible. The Realtor sent me some photos today, and with days and days of rain, it looks like a vacant lot. I'm sure the grass cutting guys are backed up, but the beds and bushes and everything else look awful. The last thing I want to do is spend money on a place 2,500 miles away that I don't live in, but what choice do I have?

Home is where the balance seems to be lacking, because I feel so spent. I love Simon dearly, and if I could be a stay-at-home dad, I'd do it in a heartbeat. But last night I was just looking forward to his bed time, because I had nothing left. That scares the shit out of me, because I never want to be that parent.

There is a backlog of other things I'm neglecting too, not the least of which is myself. I'm overeating and not doing much in the way of physical activity beyond taking the stairs to the third floor of the building I work in. I'm spending no time on my side projects. I'm barely writing. Blog post counts are plummeting, and I'm not writing for the screen at all. There are hundreds of photos that I should have processed from WDW so I can take the f'ing beta tag off of MouseZoom. I'm not adequately checking in with Diana either.

So I'm temporarily overwhelmed. The Simon and work issues are temporary, and I know that. The house is out of my control. I don't need more hours in the day, I just need to take more time to recharge. I also need to not invalidate my own awareness of behing overwhelmed. I just feel whiny when I self-assess.

Tomorrow we have an off-site, on a boat.


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