I don't have a commute anymore. I'd like to repeat that, just because it feels incredible... I don't have a commute anymore.
I didn't have a commute once before; several years ago I moved close to my office so my commute went from 30 miles each way to 1 mile each way, and boy was that nice! Something unexpected happened though: I missed the downtime my commute provided. I missed listening to the radio and getting saturated in news. I missed reflecting and having the time to wind down from the day.
A divorce, two more moves, and a re-marriage later had me back to that 60-mile-a-day commute. By then, I was excessively unhappy with my job and really ready to move on. I was able to do that when my office closed down last month, and now I work from home.
I was sort of expecting to miss it again... not the stress of dealing with the worst of humanity, certainly not the stress of bumper-to-bumper traffic on the I-5 parking lot. But I expected to miss the downtime, the opportunity for reflection, the chance to meditate myself back into my own skin.
I don't miss it though. Several things are different this time: my job is different, for one. I'm still doing something approximately similar for the same organisation; my stress levels are dramatically decreased with my new role. And, well... I'm different now too. I started going through something a few years ago; it lasted for quite a long time, during which time I felt like I didn't belong in my own skin, like I was an imposter in my own mind. At the time I attributed it to many things: dealing with Colin's death and coming to terms with the fact that I was okay with it; turning 30; the stress of my career.
It is hard to pin-point it precisely but I think I've come to the conclusion that it was all of that, and maybe more. I am not as confused as I was back then, and certainly not in as much emotional turmoil.
I've also done some serious spiritual exploration which led me to join the LDS church. I can't really describe how different it feels, being Mormon. I'll have to dig up some really good words on that for a later post.
For now, I'll end on this: I don't miss my commute because I'm getting all the things I need in my normal comings-and-goings of the day. I don't have to work so hard to re-charge, and I don't feel pulled in so many different directions. I don't feel like I'm wasting several hours out of each day not doing the things I need... yoga, running, reading, crafting, writing. You've seen that list, it's huge.
Also, don't ask me if I've starting actually doing any of that stuff yet with all my not-commuting time. I'm still settling into a routine, but I'll get there. It's what I do.