One of the advantages of my DSL connection is that it almost always works. There was a bad week here recently when nothing was as it should be, and I had a taste of life on the bare edge of civilization (that is, without the Internet). The ease with which I fell back into old routines shows just how rare those blackout periods are.
Today was kind of like that. At times I was so stressed by work that I was near the meltdown stage, but then something would happen that made me forget. Suzanne was here for a while to do homework. Eric dropped by to pick up a magazine article he needs for school. Tammy called with the good news that her landlord had already fixed the plumbing problems in the new house.
While I was talking to those people, the other cares and woes dropped away. That's how easy it is to remember that on the whole, life is good. The little worries and petty problems don't control anything beyond your ability to disentangle yourself from them. I still have a lot of paltry job-related annoyances that need to be handled, but I have to try to keep them in their place. Just because I work at home doesn't mean I live at work.
Still, it's not easy. There was a time this afternoon when I'd had more than I thought I could handle. Trying to cope with it wore me out to the bone. I wanted nothing more than to escape from it all, until I remembered that I could do exactly that. All I have to do is walk away and leave it for a better time. The less I think about it, the less frightening it becomes, and the better perspective I'll have the next time I try to manage it.