I am typing this post from a very nice and large and plush bed in a very nice and pretty room in a very nice and spiffy hotel in Chicago. No, don’t get excited, this is not vacation — I am here on a business trip for two days. This morning I left the house at 6am with a small carry-on bag, my laptop, and a huge load of business trip guilt. I wouldn’t see my kiddo for two full days. My husband will be shuffling around his meetings and schedule to manage drop-offs and pick-ups. And next week I have another trip, again for two full days. The guilt-meter is pushing to the max.
I am lucky to not have to travel often for my job. During a regular month I do one or two trips, and most of them are just for one very very long day. I realize, of course, that my daughter is absolutely fine and my husband is more than willing and able to pick up my slack for a bit. Still, try as I might I’ve not figured out how to get rid of my business trip guilt.
But I am here to report that this time I am at least trying — not just to get rid of the guilt but (loud ghasp!) to actually take this opportunity to chill out a bit and relax. I mean, here I am, in this great hotel room with a few hours to spare and without lunches or dinners to prepare, chores to take care of, and calls from my mom to return. I might as well enjoy it, right?
I called my husband a few minutes ago to say that he would be proud of me. After my meetings were over for the day I came to the hotel and headed straight to the gym. It doesn’t sound like enjoyment but it’s something that makes me feel good. When I got back to my room I took a shower that lasted more than its usual 7 minutes, called for room service and painted my nails. Yes, this is all rare for me. I then noticed a glass of red wine sitting on the table with a note from my husband to RELAX! Honey, you rock and as the red wines seeps into my blood I might just get closer to relaxing than I expected.
OK, now I am doing some work and will likely be up late doing it. But you know what? Doing work while sitting on a very nice huge bed, with pretty painted nails, my stomach happily fed and my brain forced to chill out a bit with some red wine feels almost like a mini-vacation.
Yes, I still feel guilty and no, I am not enjoying this enough to dance on the bed, but life isn’t so bad right now.
Do you have business trip guilt or do you find a way to enjoy some time away?