I was a little overwhelmed at work today. The stress of the advertising sales and marketing pace has been getting to me this week. Part of it has to do with the fact that we're understaffed with no immediate budget to add more support to our team. Part of it is assisting two people with diverse needs. Part of it is me being annoyed for allowing myself to get overwhelmed.
I mean, I was so irritated when I left the office that when a panhandler asked me for spare change, my gut reaction was to shout: "You've got to be kidding me! Do you know how hard I worked for my money this week?"
Instead I politely replied that I had no cash, which was true.
So what is a young, lone professional girl to do when the job has her on the brink of a mental breakdown and tempted to cuss out the less fortunate in New York City?
I went to 205 Nails on East 26th Street for a $10 pedicure. It wasn't the $55 pedicure at Spa Belles, dubbed the "Rolls-Royce of pedicures" by my friend David. But it was cheap, and they do a good job. And I did feel more relaxed.
However, it wasn't the pedicure that put my week in perspective.
On my way home this evening, I witnessed a large protest in Times Square in response to President Bush's plan to increase U.S. forces in Iraq.
Local troops who have already toured in Iraq will be returning for another tour of duty. And there are currently 159 New Jersey National Guard troops, who planned to return home soon, and must now remain in Iraq for an extra four months - 125 more days - to support the President's agenda.
If I make a mistake in advertising, no one dies. I don't fear for my life on a daily basis nor does my job impact anyone's life beyond indirectly influencing them to choose one arbitrary product over another. I don't have to say good-bye to my family and friends as I leave for the office and wonder if it will be the last time I see them.
As I watched the protesters march, chant and wave picket signs, I thought about my week and how hard it wasn't.