My New Interpretive Dance

I am heading back to the office one week from today, 10 days after my second Pfizer dose.  I am beyond grateful to be finished and ready to crawl out of my cave. Kind of.

A few days ago, I almost hurt my shoulder by patting myself on the back over how very tranquil I was feeling about going back to the office.

Sure, commuting sucks, but I’ve done this shit for decades now. I’m a pro at cube farming. I am a cubicle-dwelling beast. It’s all good.

I’m pining for that day now.

I’m not quite so tranquil now. I have a tranquility deficit, but I’m making up for that with an added heap of steamy anxiety. Myferris wheel as a reprentation of circular thoughts and back to work anxiety circular thoughts had grown lazy over the past half dozen months or so. It’s not that they left me, but they were less insistent. Sort of like they were floating on a lazy river at a waterpark or something.

Well, now that my reintroduction to being around other humans is imminent, my circular thoughts have snapped to attention.

Go go go go. Let’s move it. Vacation is over sweet britches. You are out of shape. We’ve got some major catching up to do. 

It’s not just the circular thoughts. My reaction to easily explained occurrences is ridiculous.

For instance, I expected to hear from my older son over the weekend. I didn’t hear from him Saturday, which is only half the weekend, and started getting a little tense. I called him a few times and texted him. Nothing. I asked Joey if he had talked to his brother and he said that Zach called earlier, but he was asleep and missed the call. It gave me vague comfort. At least, I had solid intel that he was okay until around noon on Saturday.

There are so many reasons this may happen.

He could have been busy. His phone could be dead or lost or in a different room. Perhaps, he just wasn’t in the mood to talk. But is that where my mind went? By Sunday morning, I was fairly certain what happened.

Well, it’s become apparent that it could be only one thing. He’s gone. He’s in a ditch. 

I did not voice my fears to Randy or Joey. I was stoic.

I went about my morning and puttered about. I got ingredients together to do some baking. I even looked for a cabin for a little getaway next month.

I doubt you will be ready to travel by then. But maybe it will be for the best. 

Later, I got a text from Zach. He was sick as hell from his shot and spent the day in bed.

I literally had to sit on my bed cross-legged and rock back and forth for a good ten minutes while I processed that my son was actually not dead and that my anxiety was truly kicking my ass. I’m not going to lie. I’m still shaky. I have no strength in my arms and my fingers are trembly. I’m having to backspace a lot while typing this.

I’m concerned about how I’m going to fit all the new circular thoughts in with the ones I used to have in the mornings while driving to work. I mean, there is only so much time to think on the commute and if you don’t think about the same thing at least two or three times, do you even have circular thoughts at all?

I’m not sure which of the old thoughts I can give up.

Will it be the Sooner or later, a semi is going to smash you to bits on your way to work, or You’re probably going to fall down in front of people today. It will be spectacular. 

I also don’t know how many new thoughts are coming. So far, I have this list:

What if when I go back, no one talks to me?

OMFG, what if they DO talk to me?

I probably look ridiculous now with my unicorn hair. They’re going to laugh at me. purple blue hair

And you care about that why? Let people laugh. I don’t care.

Maybe I could perform my new interpretive dance. I can call it “Fuck off, don’t talk to me” and then I’ll get in a fetal position under my desk, screw my eyes shut and just blindly flip everyone off. 

What if I really did get too weird to be around people?

I guess the answer to that last question is: I’ll find out soon enough.

You know, in a week. Or 7 days or 168 hours or 10,080 minutes or 604,800 seconds. Give or take a few minutes.

I also realize I totally fucked that math up because it’s really 8 days from now, not 7. But I’m not going through that exercise again because I’m already dealing with enough and fuck math. Also, if I am completely honest, I didn’t write this on Monday, even though you are reading it on Monday, so it’s more like 9 days from now. Or 8 days and a number of hours. Like I said. I’m not doing any more math.

Well, except I was actually right about the number of days if today were really Monday, then my number of days is correct since I am starting at the beginning of next Monday, not the end of next Monday. I don’t know anymore. Math has pissed me off since 1969.

Also, I have been super shitty about answering comments. Sorry guys. I read them and I cherish them. I am just having a bit of a lethargy issue. Anxiety is so fucking demanding.

I know I am far from the only person dealing with this. I have an amazing family and friends who I love and who love me. We are healthy. I am grateful.

Still, next week is going to be difficult.

This helped. My fingers aren’t trembly anymore. I can take a deep breath.

I’m going to go do some baking and not worry about the next 648,000 seconds. Give or take a few minutes. Or maybe a day. I don’t fucking know. God.


Photo by Zachary DeBottis from Pexels


About the author


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  • There is math involved in baking.
    Remember pi (e) and it not being squared but round?
    My advice to those of us with anxiety, circular thinking (pi e again) , and those of us who are math fuck- ups is never to try to halve or to double a recipe. Because what the actual fuck is half of 1 tbsp. There is no spoon called 1/2 tbsp. If there is no spoon for it, I say fuck it.
    As far as your retaking the Hill of Cubicles, I got nothing for ya, girl. Thank God I am retired, and no longer till the earth at the cube farm and if the abbreviation of cubicle is cube, then that suspiciously sounds like math, too.
    Wait, you are in IT, right? Isn’t there math there?
    You ARE a freakin’ unicorn.
    Love ya for it, and so do your coworkers, I’ll wager.

  • Maybe I could perform my new interpretive dance. I can call it “Fuck off, don’t talk to me” and then I’ll get in a fetal position under my desk, screw my eyes shut and just blindly flip everyone off.

    I may have to borrow this. And the unicorn hair. Well, not borrow it, that would be tricky, get mine done the same when I eventually see my hairdresser again. I know enough not to attempt that myself, although the nail scissors and my fringe are flirting….

    • You would not believe how easy it is. Keracolor clenditioner. Works just like conditioner. I put blue and purple in my hair and if it blends, it blends. I don’t follow the directions though, I put it on dry hair, wrap it up and leave it for a few hours, then wash it out. It will stain your tub though, and rubber gloves are helpful.

  • You will be fine. Let them laugh, your hair looks great, we all love it. And, if they do laugh, think of it as you made some one smile! I hope Zach is feeling better. Also, please don’t stress out about not answering comments. We, well I, just like to add my 2 cents in once in a while. Getting my 2nd shot Thursday! There, I got my math done for the day. Woohoo!

  • Love the hair! I’ve gotten both shots-yay. Don’t worry about replying to the comments – I generally write something here because RANDY STILL HASN’T GOTTEN YOU A ‘LIKE’ BUTTON! Ahem. Didn’t mean to off like that. Horrible shit happened the end of January, and I’ve been trying to straighten out multiple life insurance policies with little help from the companies. So I’m also dealing with anxiety. And I don’t drink anymore. I may re-start.
    You’ll be brilliant next week, as always.

  • I am just getting my first shot tomorrow. I will be thinking of you and others as they head back into their workplaces and we try to resume ‘normal’ life. I fear it will never be normal again. I worry about my kids too – one the next province over, and one all the way over the seas in Croatia. Life is a shitshow these days, and I am glad for bloggers like you that can find some humour to remind me that we are going to be ok.

  • Folks down in Oakhurst are starting to go around without masks, and I can’t tell if most of them have had their shots or they are just being assholes, and now there’s too many of them to jack them all up about it.
    I nearly fell down trying to step down a curb today, and it was more scary than embarrassing, but that’s how it’s been since my stroke. Shit, that’s two weeks from being thirteen years ago.
    I’m kinda thinking that things will be a little weird all around for a while after we get past covid, but I also contend that things were a lot weird before it showed up.
    However we manage to handle it will most likely be fine.
    Wait, did I just say it will most likely be fine?
    I did! I did say that however we manage to handle it will most likely be fine, and no matter how I look at that sentence, I can’t see it as being fundamentally wrong.
    That’s progress, and I’ll take it.
    Hope your reentry into cubeopolis goes well, (I was gonna try “cubesylvania” but bailed on it, cubeistan?)
    Did you know that “cubicles” was once a euphemism for crack in West Oakland?
    OK, I’ll stop now. I hope Zach is feeling better.

  • The absolute worst part of my job is that all I can do in the mail truck for 5 hours a day is drive and think. I’m literally alone with my thought for 5 freaking hours a day, and trust me, that’s really not a great place to be.

  • I’m afraid I’ve been super-shitty, or at least slow, about commenting, because I’ve read this at least three times now and while I knew, after the first time at least, that Zach was okay, I still got kind of bogged down in worry. But I think there’s a meta-textual quality here to that experience and how it relates to your other circular thoughts: things are gonna be okay.

By Michelle


RSIH in your inbox