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Comfort Food

Wikipedia defines comfort food as a "simple, familiar food that is usually home-cooked or eaten at informal restaurants." Wikipedia goes on to say that "more generally, comfort food can be defined as food that brings some form or measure of comfort, sense of well-being, or easy satisfaction... [It] may also involve foods that have a nostalgic element either to an individual or a specific culture."

Well, tonight I went in search of some "nostalgic element" food and ended up with a full plate of spaghetti that I devoured within minutes.

It's been one of the hardest weeks I can recal in a very long time. Communication is lacking in several areas of my life right now and I'm growing more and more recluse by the day. These days the only people I get a chance to interact with are the people who work for me. It's hard to socialize and vent to those people you would be venting about. I can't very well take one Officer asside and tell them what the other guys have done to piss me off, only to chose another Officer to complain to about the one I had just spoken with. Things don't work that way in the business world.

I love (or loved) my job when I first got my title on December 21st. It was a momentus day for me - the day I finally got recognized for the dedication and pride I took in my work. There was nobody more qualified than I was to get the job done, but more than that I took such pride in what I was doing and knew exactly what I wanted to accomplish. Was I too ambitious?

I still have high hopes for my crew and want to make sure we get high praise for a job well done. With the way things have been going, this hasn't been happening and it's not likely to happen on the path we seem to be treading.

I'm a perfectionist in many respects. I beat myself up if I feel I've not done a good job. I can't help but feel like I could be doing better than I am at the moment, but I don't know what more I can do. Already I work 10 to 12 hours a day, and I'm about to go from 6 days to 7 days a week. I can't do it all myself, and these guys just don't realize that.

I've tried hard to make them understand that I will never ask them to do something that I myself wouldn't do. I bring treats (like the basket of varied chocolates for Easter I brought in today or the cupcakes I brought in to the meeting on March 27th) that I pay for out of my own pocket. It's no wonder I can't afford to buy dinner for myself - if I get a little extra, I give it back to my crew.

I think that's going to have to stop. I like being able to share with them - and Lord knows they're the only people I see these days, so who else can I share with? My life has grown to revolve around this post the past few months. I guess I'm maybe taking it a little too personally when someone decides to transfer away, and I shouldn't. Unlike me, they all have families and friends they like to spend time with. These guys are all I know of life here in California at the moment. It's sad, but it's true. I'm kind of like the "Mom" it's been said several times. Some people love their mothers and would do anything for them. Others take their mothers for granted and do whatever they can to get away with murder.

I've been taken advantage of here at work. I give them ALMOST anything they ask for, like days off, vacations, schedule changes, shift swaps - the like. Well, as much as I hate to do it, that's about to change. I'm going to have to be rather strict. That's not a side of me I like to see, and I'm certain they won't like it either.

It's sad when my life revolves around work. I spend about 70 hours a week at work, and hour going to work and an hour going home from work. If I added up the hours, that would be about 82 hours a week spent revolving around work. That's not including the phone calls at all hours of the day and night (and I always answer. I make sure the guys know I'm ALWAYS available when they need me) and the number jumps up closer to about 85 hours a week. When there are only 168 hours in a week, that leaves me about 83 hours a week to myself. If we break that down, it works out to
about 11 hours each day to sleep, eat, bathe, feed the cat, go grocery shopping, get my laundry, iron my work uniforms, clean the house, BLOG, and spend time with my friends. If that 11 hours is factored down and sleep time is taken out that leaves me about 3-4 hours a day to get ALL of that done. No probem, you say? HA! Somehow I still don't manage to go to bed until midnight and have to wake up at 6am. That way I give myself more time to get things done.

Life exists only for work these days - except Saturdays. Saturdays are mine. That is a full 24 hours that nobody can take away from me. That day is far too important to me. I might not even leave the house on a Saturday, but that's my choice and one I'm more than happy to make. Now, if we go back and take that 24 hours out of the 83 hours a week I can spend on myself durring the rest of the week, that leaves me only 59 hours a week before and after work to get my tasks finished. That's about 8.5 hours a day, and now it makes sense why I go to bed so late still feeling like I didn't get anything done.

I'm making myself sick. I haven't had a decent nights sleep in months. The bags under my eyes are growing every day. I use blush to hide the fact I'm as pale as an Easter rabbit. I'm not eating properly and have dropped about 10 lbs in an unhealthy way. I used to look forward to going to work.

I need a vacation and I know exactly where I'm going when I get one. I'm going to be about 5,000 miles away from work, away from home, away from bills and phone calls and these problems that are causing me to develop an ulcer.

So - I decided to do something nice for myself. I really couldn't afford it, and I'll be paying off this spaghetti for months since I put it on my credit card, but I was hungry and needed some comfort food rather badly. It was comforting, I'll admit. I'm feeling better already - but often my venting on a blog helps that immensely.

I'll be ok. I just have to wrap my head around it and take strong control. I need to "suck it up" and get the job done. And I will, no doubt in my mind, I will. I'm just not sure how yet.



So - what's YOUR comfort food?

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