How do I cope with change in my routine?
I realize Morgan the Dog responded to this question also, but I have a human response. I trust that you realize Morgan’s posts are meant to add levity but also a sort of relatability, because my very human response is actually the same as Morgan’s.
One change in my routine is coming up next week, when my wife is going away by herself, for a solo writing retreat. That makes for a lot of changes in my routine, as Rachael will not be with me.
I rely on her presence to ground me, and to sort of verify that my responses to things that occur in my days make sense. When she’s not around, I miss her because I love her, and I also miss her supportive role.
And so, like Morgan, I cope with change in my routine by identifying what I will be missing and planning ahead to sort of cover those basic needs. It’s the planning ahead that’s key for me, so that I don’t leave myself in a situation unprepared, and without my regular resources.
In the absence of my regular support person, I cope by strategically turning to my remaining resources. Next week that means some scheduled times with friends, way more than I would normally do.
The act of scheduling all of these additional activities is difficult for me, and Rachael can help me with the scheduling somewhat. If I do not plan ahead, the week won’t go well because I won’t have anyone to turn to with my day to day “little questions” (which is what I call them) that I need support with answering.
For example, last time Rachael was away, a friend of ours made a social media post in crisis. This person is self-destructive and tends to not accept help that they need, but is also sometimes not safe. You with me?
I responded to them, like I normally would. But I’d also normally circle back with Rachael, to make sure I responded right. The little question would be, “I offered the right thing here, right? Am I missing anything?” And this is a question because this person would likely not accept what I offered, and would continue to self destruct.
Basically, I wanted to be sure there was nothing further I could do to help our friend in crisis, since the friend doesn’t make good choices, and won’t be able to say what they need, or accept anything anyway. But I still want to try, in case this time may be different for them.
So, someone else, whom I’d pre-arranged to be in touch with while Rachael was away, was able to take my text about this and weigh in. “Yeah – looks like you made a reasonable offer. I don’t see anything else you could do here.”
That’s the help that I needed from a friend while Rachael was out of town.
Now that’s just me, and an example of the kind of thing that I need when Rachael is out of town, which is a change in my routine that I need to deal with sometimes. You’d need to figure this out for yourself, but I hope this example is helpful to you.