Today I had to go to the State conference for our surgical center association. Most of it has absolutely nothing to do with what I do at work (coding & billing), but since there is usually one speaker there in that area, I have to go. It's not so bad... there's always a motivational speaker and I really like motivational speakers.
In the past, we have always had this enormous conference room with a separate room for vendors to set up in. Usually way more space than needed. Due to various complications, we had to change venues. The room we had this year was about 1/3 the size of the previous room and they had the vendors set up in the same room. It was so crowded. Like you couldn't move from your seat without having to squeeze by everyone else.
I don't do well in crowds. I enjoy my personal space and having people wriggle by me every few minutes got to me in no time. By our first break, I had to go out into the hallway and do some deep breathing. It's the closest I've been to a panic attack in over a decade.
I used to have panic attacks quite a bit... had to quit a job I hated because I freaked out in the parking lot and my mom had to come get me. I just couldn't go back in that building. I'm glad to say that I don't get like that hardly ever anymore. I do have people issues though and there were just too many people in too little space for my mental health.
And, in addition to that, by the second speaker, I had been fully reminded that I do not like what I do for a living. To put it mildly.
The motivational speaker, Lisa Smartt, was hilarious. I laughed so hard my sides ached. I related so much to her. Laughing was a great stress relief. Between her self-deprecating humor and my incessant doodling, I managed to not freak out.
I was complimented on my doodling skills by people sitting around me. I don't normally doodle this much... I mean, I always doodle at these things because I couldn't really care less about Worker's Compensation laws, but not usually pages and pages of it.
Hopefully next year they can get our old space back. Otherwise, I might need to bring extra doodle paper. And a Xanax.