It’s a part of human nature wanting to be included in things. If an event is happening or a holiday is approaching, we want to be invited or at least thought of while the guest list is drawn up. I always tell my friends, “Let me know when this is happening”, or “Don’t forget to invite me.” We make plans, but of course, life has a way of making those plans obsolete, for me anyway. It came to a point where I was no longer invited or worse, wasn’t even told to protect my feelings. Traveling for work has its ups and downs. Of course, I love eating at different restaurants, tasting variations of dishes in different cities, or making memories the only tourist now how to (with my handwritten directions from the hotel staff). But, there is something about making memories you can share or have inside jokes with people for years.
It got to the point where I was anxious about calling friends when I was in town because the communication wasn’t there anymore. Unbeknownst to me, my friends grew tired of reaching out and me not being available. The conditions of my schedule were not their fault, they did their part. I was remiss in not asking their plans and making an effort with my reliability. I am now hassling with seeing family, friends, and making my relationship feel as normal as our reality will allow. I love it, I love having the ability to spend time with everyone and travel when I want. I do feel a certain way when I miss out on birthdays and other special events though. Boundaries play a big part in what I plan for myself as well. I do make an effort to make myself as available as possible without burning myself out.
I’m not perfect and I know my situation never will be but I’m learning through this process that nothing ever will be.