Monday, August 22, 2005

Any Given Monday

Or Tuesday. Or any day that I go in to the office. Coworkers are all male.
Conversation in a hallway. I’m briskly walking towards the ladies room.
Coworker: Hey, you’re not pregnant and your hair is short!
Me: Nope, not pregnant. Yep, short hair.
Coworker: Are you back, then?
Me, not wanting to get into it: Um humm.
Coworker: How long has it been, a year?
Me: My baby is 7 months old now.
Coworker: Wow. Time flies. Next thing you know you’ll be a grandma.
Me: Next thing you know…
Coworker: Well, welcome back.
Me: Thanks.
Conversation in an elevator.
Coworker 1: Oh. Are you back?
Coworker 2: Hey. You’re back.
Coworker 3: Welcome back.
Me: I’ve been back. Since March. I come in to the office for half days sometimes.
Coworker 1: Half days with full pay?
Me: I’m mostly working from home, but I’ve been working full time since March.
Coworker 2: You get to work from home?
Me: It’s a temporary arrangement. (awkward silence) A lactation thing.
Coworker 1: Oh. Way too much information.
Coworkers 2 and 3: Muttered agreement, averted eyes.
Me, flushed face, head hanging: I know, I know. Sorry. I don’t know how to explain it without it being too much information.
Coworker 2: I didn’t much like working from home, when I used to do that. Missed the people, and didn’t like to hear the screaming baby all day long.
Me: He’s in daycare, but yes, I miss seeing the people. That’s why I’m here.
Coworker 1: Welcome back.
Stepping out of the elevator.
Coworker 4: Hey, it’s you! Are you back? Welcome back!
Me, smiling, not pausing my stride: Thanks!


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