Walking That Fine Line

Some of you have been sweet enough to inquire as to my whereabouts in the last few weeks. Somewhere in between day of getting hired and launching a brand new online daily news publication barely a month later, I have gone from being Ms. Love, Peace and Happiness to being my own worst foe: Ms. Workaholic.

I am the one who sits down at the dinner table with my iPhone and laptop, working while trying to shove some kind of sustenance in my mouth. I go out for “fun,” and I have to check my iPhone every single time it pings with a work email.

If the phone rings at 8 a.m., if I can wake up, I answer it instead of sleeping in and returning the call after I’ve had enough sleep. More times than I care to admit, I have worked until 5 or 6 in the morning. I have actually stayed up all night working, not necessarily because I need to, per se, but because I keep thinking of all these things that need doing, and I feel if I don’t do them right now, they won’t all get done. There are simply not enough hours in the day.

I am on call 24/7. I would complain to you about this. But the truth is, I love my job. I love getting the scoop on everything going on in town. I love hearing from people that they love the site, that I seem to be everywhere, that I’m covering everything going on in a sensitive and refreshing way. I relish the positive feedback (and it’s also cool that my analytics are so strong.) It’s flattering that politicians and big media in the state are reaching out to me and not the other way around.

But most of all I love that I can look at my own work at the end of the day and feel proud of it, even if I am a damned perfectionist who is constantly editing and re-editing my own work. That’s just who I am, who I’ve always been. That’s what makes my publication what it is–something people want to read every day.

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I do crave balance. I know I will find it when I feel secure enough with my freelancers not have to write all the important stories myself. I have some great writers for certain niches. Other freelancers, I basically have to rewrite everything they do, so it almost feels like I want to cover that stuff myself and write it correctly the first time than have to rewrite it without having the best material to start with.

It’s ironic that where I once felt slighted by my workaholic boyfriends in the past, I have now become that workaholic. The V-Man hates how I don’t sleep enough, forget to eat meals and feel like I need to be on the clock 24/7. He knows not all of my colleagues are the same way. This is true. He knows that I could get away with much less effort and still put out decent enough work.

Yet he also should realize, complete perfectionist that he is, that when he takes on a job, he’s going to do it his right way, no matter how long it takes him. He just never realized how similar we are in that way when I am in the zone of my passion. When we hang out, he wants me to not be distracted. Ah, the shoe is on the other foot now, isn’t it?

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I bought myself a Wii during the early weeks around my launch. I’ve used it twice. I am determined to use it again tomorrow. This past weekend, I actually had a couple days where I wasn’t glued to my computer. It felt incredible. I saw the new Harry Potter. I watched another movie with my family (sort of). I baked brownies.

The world wasn’t going to spin off its axis. I had planned everything well. Each major article was written in advance and was set to go post at the appropriate times. I have the day after Thanksgiving off. I can have family time and not let work completely invade my dad’s birthday or play with my nephew and niece.

Tomorrow, after going to a high school football game for work (I know, torture, especially when it’ll be in the 20s and windy), I will go to the unofficial “reunion” night at the pub and catch up with Harlequin Hero, among others. I actually have cool things to talk about with my former classmates. It feels good to be able to proudly look people in the eye and not have to say, “I have been laying in bed for the last 6 months.”

My doctors are amazed by the changes, as am I. But now, seriously I really need to catch up on some sleep. Phones are going on silent. Tomorrow is going to be a crazy, fun yet busy day.

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