I laugh, I do my job with energy and thoughtful intent, I smile and join in. I don't feed the anger, or indulge in gossip or dwell on mistakes, my own or others.
Yesterday at work beat me the hell up. Everyone got out alive, I could still laugh at the end. But I made some doozie mistakes, sins of omission, that I had to run - not being metaphorical here, to correct, several times. I wasn't the only one, we were all dominoes falling about. Not to worry, patient is fine as far as the surgery goes. No one died, no one really hurt. Except for C who will probably lose his toenail, but that wasn't my mistake.
As I write up the most important error - also not my mistake - that fell on me, only 20 minutes after my shift ended, D called to say he and N were going to Desert Edge, did I want to meet them there? I was tired, and distracted, didn't want to say no, so I said sure, Desert Edge. I finish writing up the incident, get changed, gather boxes obtained from the dock earlier, wrangle them to the car.
It took more than a bit of jockeying to get them in, because they are different sizes, and they are boxes. Twice I dropped my keys into the trunk, and had to take all the boxes out to get the keys back. Finally, I am on my way, don't try to park in the Red Rock parking lot, but around the block by the Greek church. My legs are rubbery, I am not thinking well. As I walk back through, I realize there were open spots in their lot. It's crowded, I walk around looking for the guys, no luck, I put our name on the list and take the pager, thinking they just hadn't left immediately, and would be by soon. I wait. I go back in and check just in case, I wait more, and start to worry they have been in an accident. Enough time goes by that they can't possibly have just be a little late. Then I realized, he said Desert Edge, not Red Rock. SHIT.
I walk all the way back to the car, drive to the other crowded parking lot, cut through the stores, and D is in the walkway of the mall, looking for me. I can't deal with a touch, certainly not with food, nor his worried, then greatly relieved face. I can't stay, I have to go home I tell him.
"We'll bring you food," he offers.
"I don't give a shit." I say, and escape, a long, annoying drive home with crappy jazz, bad news, or prickly silence to chose from. I alternate among the three. When I get in, Moby gives me the Flop Of Welcome, and allows a bit of catherapy. D calls to make sure I am safe. Bless him for not taking it personally when I say, "I need to stop talking," because I do. I have learned to be explicit with what I need from him, and he takes it as simple information. By the time they get home, I have applied alcohol, food, and read some blogs. D nurtures, and gives me space to settle. We all talk and talk, and I come down and calm down.
Woke at 0730, more rested, but drained, convalescent. I have few reserves these days, always feeling on the edge of despair. I kick a few pebbles over.