Post-Christmas Blues

This was one of those good years where the calendar worked out where I took 4 days off and got 10. We left for Kentucky on December 22 and drove back on New Year’s Eve. I had one last day off yesterday and now this morning before I go to work from 1-9 tonight. Reentry to the real world is always hard. It seems harder this year. The post-Christmas blues are a real struggle right now for various reasons.

We’ve gone from spending 10 days with all four of us together to my son driving back to his house as soon as we were back on Monday. We’ve got a couple more weeks and then my daughter goes back to college. My wife is already at work and I will soon go back to the days of having a couple of hours alone every night. Assuming my leave request I put in last month is eventually approved, we will have one more week all together in Florida in a little over a week. It might be the last chance we have to travel together. I might have to consider resigning if told I can’t go. Anyway, I am trending toward more and more time alone. I always joke about becoming a hermit, but what I don’t really mean I want to be alone. I just want to limit the amount of time I deal with the general public. I would prefer more time with my family.

We’ve also gone from being with my siblings and their kids and my wife’s mom to being over 500 miles away from our extended family.  I’ve given up on ever moving back to Kentucky. We’re pretty much settled here and I will remain here or in the vicinity as long as my kids are here. I can’t do anything about living this far away from our family, but I look forward to the days when I have more freedom to travel to Kentucky more often to see family. I’m happier and less stressed when I’m there. Of course, I’m also on vacation when I’m there, but I’m sure family has something to do with it as well. I would love to be able to just hop in my car and head to Kentucky on a whim. Only 6 more years and I will be there.

Reentry is also harder this year because going back to work will be harder this year. I’ve reached a point where I need a change, but I’m not sure how to make that change. If I stay where I am, I’m pretty sure I will be exactly where I am 6 years down the road when I retire. It’s hard to leave for a variety of reasons. I would likely have to take a pay cut if I left, I would have to start over after 23.5 years with the same organization and some moves would mess up my retirement date. I don’t think there is anything that can happen to make my situation better. I’m kind of stuck and that is not a good way to start the new year. It makes the thought of going back tonight much harder.

I think the only way to make things better is to do more fun things when I’m not at work. Less sitting around alone feeling sorry for myself and more time outside taking a walk or doing anything besides sitting on my couch depression eating. I will have to work harder to fight the post-Christmas blues this year.

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