“Do you think she meant what she said?” He looked over at me with the expression of someone trying to discover the secret to the magic trick he’d just witnessed.
“What?” I said, looking up from the sketch I was working on. Admittedly, when I work on design solutions, I tend to close off the world around me. “What are we talking about?”
“This morning in that meeting in the editor’s office. Becky said offhandedly that she didn’t think I was giving this project my full time and attention.” The furrow in his brow deepened. I couldn’t tell if it was out of concern or annoyance.
“In my experience,” I began, “whether joking or not, people generally say what they mean. If they’re too self-conscious about the possible repercussions from the statement or they think it’ll cause too much drama, they may shroud it in distracting emotions like humor or indifference. But, yeah, I think she meant what she said. The question for you is, was she right?”
“What kind of response is that?” he said defensively. “I always give full time and attention to my work!” he exclaimed. Incredulity washed across his face, causing me to count that with my “really?” face.
“Are you telling me that you haven’t been distracted at all since…you know? That you’ve always been fully present? How many times have you avoided my phone calls in the evening or been too busy for meetings?”
Thinking back to the events and we’d both experienced in the past two months prompted me to remind him that neither one of us had been fully present after getting back from Badger Creek. The events of those three nights and the investigation that has persisted since then have drawn our attention in every direction that didn’t involve work.
I know where my bread is buttered. I know that I must produce drawings each and every day to continue to pay bills. I know that sometimes the events of daily life interfere with the rigor of project schedules. I also know that work is my escape. It does indeed allow me to close the outside world and allow for the slow progress of time. They say that heals wounds. Right now, that’s what I’m banking on. (part one)
Image by Stephen Depolo, Creative Commons License, No Modifications