I don’t feel well. My body is completely fucked up. I’m sleep-deprived. My eyelids are flickering. I haven’t showered. My toenails are half an inch long. My legs are prickly. I’ve distanced myself from my friends who’ve asked about hanging out, coming to happy hour mid-week. “I have to work!” I’d scream into email. “I worked this past weekend. I didn’t sleep Sunday night.” Little did I know there was more exhaustion and meanness to come. I started to get frustrated. The deal didn’t come through Monday morning. I’d shrug my shoulders when I heard that it looked like we were really going to get it this week. We’re really going to get it? That’s what was said last weekend. No, but this time. I rolled my eyes. I wasn’t an investment banker. I didn’t get paid to work through the night. I’m also the type of person who needs to eat often. The reason I’m not 500 pounds is because I sleep at night. When I don’t sleep through the night, then I need to eat. Over the course of a few days, I had gained six pounds from pizza, soda, dim sum, mexican food, Starbucks, Jack in the Box, donuts.
I had partied too much last Saturday night. My date and I bar-hopped throughout the city. Bar after bar. Drink after drink. White wine, red wine, vodka-tonics. Sunday morning, he woke me up with a hug. “I gotta go golfing, baby.”
“Awww, ok,” I purred and immediately turned around—shutting him out. He closed the bedroom door behind him and I heard him slam the front door as he exited. The front door always slams. It’s the only way to make sure it’s closed. I made a one-second mental note to ask my handyman to fix it.
Two minutes later, my cell phone rang. “Mother fucker,” I steamed. “He must have forgotten something.” I scanned my bedroom to determine what it was. Nothing. I opened my bedroom door and walked toward my cell phone charger in the kitchen. My phone wasn’t there. Ugh. Where was it. It had stopped ringing. I located it neatly tucked into a pocket in my purse. I’d been too drunk to properly tuck the phone into bed with its charger. By the time I got to it, I heard the tone indicating he had left a message. I pushed the buttons to go straight to voicemail.
My boss spoke grimly. “Hey Catherine. My apologies for calling you this early on a Sunday. It’s 9am. We really need you here, if you can. Give me a call here in the office and I can tell you what’s going on.”
My head was already spinning. What could I contribute? I was clearly hung over. But I couldn’t very well call my boss and tell him I was hung over. Oh, what a life I led. I felt guilty. Then I tried to assuage the guilt. Not my fault that I have a life and partied a little too much last night. I steadied myself over the toilet. Get it out if you need to get it out. It’ll make you feel better. Nothing came. I leaned over my bathroom vanity and watched myself stick my index and middle finger down my throat. I gagged as tears welled up and poured down the corners of my eyes. I wiped the sweat off my forehead. You’re ok. We’ll get you a bearclaw and peppermint hot chocolate before going into work. You’ll be ok. I talked to myself like a mother talking to her grown hungover child who had missed work too many times and was in jeopardy of getting fired.
When I got to work and after checking in with my boss, I confided in my co-worker. “I’ll be honest, I’m not in a position to be here right now. Had I known I would be needed this morning, I certainly would not have engaged in certain mind-numbing activities last night. I just need a few minutes.”
And with that, I set my head on my desk and rested. It was just before 10am on Sunday. I didn’t leave the office until 5am Monday morning–simply for a few hours of sleep at home. Returned immediately back to the office which has been not only my office space but my place of residence for the past week.
And now? On to quarterly earnings.