The New Normal


The grapes are washed, the raisins and peanuts mixed. Only thing missing are the baby carrots, which I passed up at Kroger last night because of the cost. Sure, I probably could have gotten everything for a lot less at the Wal-Mart across the street, but I had neither the time nor patience to navigate the long, wide aisles and dodge short, wide people for just a few items. It was nearly 7:45; I wanted to be in bed by 10.

I made it to bed by 11:30, still bright-eyed and a bundle of nerves. I’m due at the office in about 90 minutes.


Some people would rather do the opposite: Run their own business rather than work for someone else. Success depends on the market, and right now the market demands I get my behind on someone else’s payroll.

In the 10 years I’ve been on my own, I’ve flitted in and out of a few truly awful situations. Won’t invite any negative energy by detailing them here. Suffice it to say there are some power-mad, self-hating shysters out there. The trick is listening to your instincts rather than your dwindling bank account.

It’s been in the past 10 years that I’ve gained the most weight. I dove into books like What Color is Your Parachute? and Career Bounce-Back and The Well-Fed Writer – that last one, by the way, I highly recommend – instead of dealing with the emotional issues of be self-employed, but unemployed, and really needing to move in order to find a decent-paying position in my field, but not wanting to move my family yet again.

I pushed through it all, not admitting to myself or anyone for the next eight years that underneath that go-getter, smiling, highly social demeanor I was very likely clinically depressed. Even I didn’t know what the true problem was. Depressed? Not moi. Then I went to see Dr. Bean a few years ago about getting some prescription appetite suppressants or something, and the dam burst.

Eight years. What a tremendous waste of time. And yet, would I be the fabulous person I am today without that experience? ** LOL **

So hey, I’m packing lunch, healthy snacks and, of course, my water bottle. Until we figure out how to deal with four different skeds with just two cars, not sure when I can resume my morning gym routine. Hopefully we’ll be able to get a “beater” car soon.


OK, so I’m sitting here writing when I should be unbraiding my naps, getting dressed and reintroducing myself to rush-hour traffic. Gotta go . . .

When your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt.  ~  Henry J. Kaiser

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Leslie J. Ansley is an award-winning journalist and entrepreneur who blogs daily for TheRoot. She lives in Raleigh, NC.