There are days when you have a lot to do. Then there are days when you spend the whole day doing one thing, and when you're out of time it's not even done, and you know you have to start two hours early the next day just to get it done a day later than you had hoped.
I didn't have that kind of day today. But my boss did. He's trying to put together a 65-page conference program in a Word file, keep it identical to a database that will serve up the information on line, and deal with the corrections and special requests that are proliferating as the publication deadline approaches. He has no secretary; our new administrative assistant doesn't start until March 1. And he's on Robitussin after having several uncontrollable coughing jags in the last couple of days.
It's been that kind of week for him, and for a lot of us. Help is at a minimum; deadlines are at a maximum. We've got thousand-yard stares. And there's no end in sight until April, when recruiting and the conference will both be at an end.
None of which would be a problem if I weren't in a reflective mood. I'm trying to regroup and make some decisions about the next few years of my career as an administrator, think about where I am and where I want to be, and it's hard to develop those ideas without my boss to bounce them off of. But it's clear when I poke my head in his office that my issues aren't on the radar. I get that. I've been there.
The "no end in sight" part is what is giving all of us pause. We've gone flat-out before, but never for so long on so many different overlapping projects with so little manpower. Right now everything personal has been put aside; the only things on the table are the jobs that have to be powered through. That's fine for the short term, but how much of it can we take?