In less than a week I’ll embark on a work adventure with 260ish of my nearest and dearest co-workers. Over the last 18 months I’ve been at Automattic some of my colleagues have become close friends. Some are still total strangers. None the less we’ll be all in one place for 7 days to work and play and spend time together. This presents some interesting challenges and opportunities. We’re a distributed company which means we work from wherever we want. We build our own schedules. We manage our own time. To some it might seem chaotic but if I’ve learned anything in my time here it’s that we get things done.
But how’s a hermit girl who works from the sofa in her pajamas more often than not supposed to prepare for 7 days jam-packed with company goodness? After I figured out where my kid will be and what she’ll be doing while I’m away. Once my travel plans are made and double checked. And I know that my guy will be able to take care of my cats, probably better care of them than I do. And I have my favorite carry-on hard-case at the ready. And my travel size toiletry bottles are all filled up with my favorite products, not whatever brand happens to be sold in the 3.4oz size. After all that what becomes important? It’s really not the big things at all. Here’s the top 5 list of stuff keeping me awake at night as I gear up for the Automattic Grand Meetup:
5 – Clothes. I work from home. By myself. Sometimes at off hours. It’s gross but there are days I totally forget to shower until it’s time to pick my kid up from school. I pretty much live in my pajamas or jeans and WordPress t-shirts. Yep. I’m wearing the latter right now. When I have a meeting here or a get together there I can get dressed. When I go out to a nice dinner with my guy, I’ve got an outfit for that. School functions, I’ve got that covered. But something about getting up 8 mornings in a row and putting on an outfit I feel good in and am happy to run out and play and work with friends and co-workers is daunting. I was raised to believe that it’s important to dress appropriately for work. Now that means different things to different people and that’s a-okay. But for me it’s important that I make an effort and feel good. My wardrobe isn’t built for that though. Luckily my best friend who wears roughly the same size as I do is a clothes-horse. She came over with enough tops and dresses to cover me in cute without repeating an outfit for a full month. I picked some of my favorites and into the suitcase they go.
4 – My hair. I haven’t seen my natural hair color since I was 15 years old. It’s been a gothic rainbow of colors plus a few shades of blond but for the most part it’s been black. More than half my life my hair has been drenched in color. I want it to look nice when I’m out and about. Fresh. Bright. Bouncy. Mostly because while I’m there the last thing I want to think about is my hair. I’m low maintenance with it from day-to-day but if the color isn’t crisp I feel like a mess. Last night I relaxed with my kid, watched tv, and let the box of blue-black do its magic on my hair and brows. I looked like a drippy super-villain for 25 minutes but I won’t stress about it while I’m away.
3 – Medication. 12 years ago I was diagnosed with high blood pressure. It took a couple of years of trial and error with diet, supplements, and medication to get all squared away but my blood pressure is in check now. I only had enough pills to get me through half of the meetup and for some reason insurance companies done like to refill those prescriptions early. The hour I spent yesterday waiting to see if they’d approve my prescription for an early pickup probably elevated my bp enough that I could have used a higher dosage. Now I’ll just worry that they won’t let me through security with my collection of medication, naproxen, and vitamins.
2 – My phone. Not just my phone but my phone, my tablet, and my laptop. And my cords and cables. Also my backup chargers. I’m afraid I’ll leave something at home. Or that I’ll be the one person without signal at the hotel. Because it would be impossible to pick up a hotel phone and dial up my loved ones. Inconceivable!
1 – Elevation sickness. Ever since it hit me that we’ll be more than a mile above sea level this has plagued my waking hours. What if I get dizzy. What if I get a headache. What if I can’t sleep at night?! What if I can’t drink enough water? What if my head explodes? What if I fall off the earth or something??! My boyfriend pointed out the other night that I have a tendency to find the item which should cause me the least concern and worry about it above all others. It distracts me from worrying about the big things. Like what if a giant comet comes crashing down to earth throwing up enough debris to cloud the entire planet killing all the plants and dinosaurs? You know, if there were any dinosaurs around to kill. So I think I’ll just go ahead and worry to my heart’s content.
After all rational me knows that everything I’ll need to combat this potential minor issue will be waiting there for me when I arrive. Along with my excellent friends and colleagues who won’t care about my hair, or my clothes, and will probably have spare chargers and cables they’re ready and willing to share.
I’ll worry about those poor dinosaurs later.