Yesterday I had a little jaunt into the city to listen to the head of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (have I told you lately how much I love my job?) talk about what’s happening around the world as we head to a low carbon future. (Sidetrack: did you know that the Kyoto Protocol ends at the end of this year? That the Kyoto Protocol II is being negotiated in Doha next month or that Australia has still not said whether it will sign it?)
As I got off the bus and walked up to the Lowy Institute the city was humming with workers heading out to get some lunch. It hit me full force that I really am not a part of that scene anymore. So many pencil skirts. Lots of pretty shoes. And suits. Â Older, greying men with spreading girths versus a younger generation in gorgeous thick cotton collared shirts and suits tailored to within an inch of their seam allowance.
I slowed, catching snippets of conversation “It’s just not the right letter to send”, “I know about it because she put it in an email to Linda” and remembered being that ensconced in a business. Sure, I had my own pencil skirt on and a face full of make-up and yes, my head was full of facts I’d crammed about carbon trading and climate change so I wasn’t that far removed from these people but I felt different. Once I got back to my office (ie home), the gear was off, the face paint removed and there was a brief lie down (my back is almost back to its worst).
I adore my job, it came at a time my brain wasn’t working as it should and my stress was off the scale. But I battled through the panic and self-doubt and can appreciate it has been the best thing that could have happened. It is just the right amount of work in terms of hours (a five day fortnight), I am learning so much, it challenges my brain, it hones my craft, my deadlines are essentially immediate so I don’t have things hanging over my head or time to procrastinateÂ Â and most importantly it is a complete disconnect from my day to day life. I don’t have to commute, I can still work when my back is busted (on my “floor office” involving a yoga mat, pile of pillows and heat packs as required), there’s no sharing a manky work kitchen and I can interview big important people without a skerric of makeup on while in my tracky-dacks.
It’s been a rough year in the allconsuming house – as most years seem to be – but itÂ appears the waters of my life have indeed calmed. You guys have stood at the ready, rallied as I fell, willed me back to my feet. My life is a crazy stress-addled one but I’m doing OK. Thought I should let you know. And say thanks.