I played hooky today. I never play hooky.
I’ve always put work first. If there’s a meeting on the calendar, I’ll schedule around it. Work for others has always been non-negotiable, especially meetings. I will manipulate my schedule tighter than a contortionist balled into a knot in order not to miss a meeting. Your needs are more important than mine, my actions silently intoned, over and over each time I twisted myself to fit another. Self-care has never been a talent, or even a priority. I'm not sure I really grasped what self-care meant until sometime in my thirties.
Without looking at a calendar with US holidays listed, I scheduled a call with the UK…for September 1. The morning of Labor Day. For most workers, a day of rest. It's true that I was available. But I haven’t had a true holiday in many months. After a brutal month on social media, where I spent most days for work, I was fried deeper than a piece of chicken. I longed to take a long weekend without feeling any responsibility. My role on the call was auxiliary, rather than necessary. But still, I felt obligated. It was Work.
In the Bond family, you always put work first. It’s just always been our way. But something was different this time. Realizing my error, I fretted, felt guilty, decided to take the call anyway, felt anxious, then begged off at the last minute. The call proceeded without me. No one called me out on it. The world didn’t stop spinning. My heart didn’t stop beating.
Something has shifted.
Before the experiment with putting my creativity first, I rarely put my personal work or needs ahead of Work. But today I did.
Damn did it feel good.