A small group has started having a meeting that I was invited to participate in by phone; I was excited to hear the discussion of the agenda question which was about things we learned by a recent employee departure. Most of the discussion is not relevant here, but after so much open back and forth, someone decided to have everyone do a check-in: how are you feeling? It wasn't so much how are you feeling because of the discussion but just how are you feeling. And when it was my turn, I thought about sugar coating it--no one could see me, they wouldn't know, would they?
And then I said I was stressed. That I have no control. Part of the discussion was about things I have no control over but others outside of this group perceive me as "in charge of" while I am not the decision maker. When someone commented on work being the most stressful thing in most peoples' lives, I started to fall apart. I said it's not, not right now, as much as it's stressful, it's not the worst. I have no control outside of work either. I didn't get into details but did the high level. I tried to cover up my crying. I let them know that a solution is in the works so they wouldn't worry. Someone suggested bringing a dog to the office; unfortunately, that is forbidden but, wow, it's amazing how well people get me from so far away. The guy that was next to check in said I am hard to follow. (I've heard that before, LOL!)
M had already gone to lunch so I needed to go get something alone. I am feeling terrible (I had major D this morning, and am having some pain issues to go with it) so I decided to splurge and go to True Food for some (SAFE!) turkey bolognese, no cheese, and a green ice tea. I also had some soup of the day after he checked that it was okay; it was a tomato based chicken rice soup, pretty good. I ate it all. I didn't feel like I stuffed myself until the very last couple of bites, and even then, not uncomfortably. I'm pretty sure there is something to this leaky gut theory.
While I was dining alone, I chatted online and by text with my sister M and my SIL and my husband (all separately) about potential plans for tonight, among other things. My SIL is definitely having some of the same pain I'm going through.
When I checked my work email, I had one from the meeting facilitator, who wanted to thank me for my authentic sharing. I'm such an open book most of the time; I'm not even sure I know how to NOT share authentically. At best, I try to listen and not think about what I'm going to say, so that maybe I won't say anything. I'm embarrassed by myself, especially when I'm authentic, but no one else seems to find it embarrassing or be embarrassed for me. But I don't want to BE a complainer; I think that's at least partially what makes me embarrassed.
I want to be the happy face. The eternal optimist. Positive. Upbeat. In control.