Breathing Room.


It has been completely crazy in my office lately. Not at my company, I mean specifically in my office.

There’s been a daybed in here for the past year or so (it’s a long story, and one that does not involve me sleeping at work). To make room for the daybed, I’ve been using a very, very small desk. I don’t have a very small monitor or a small cat, and both of them are either always or often on the desk. Essentially if Michael the cat is on the desk, my elbows cannot be.

Then we got Tom, and for about six weeks he spent the workdays in a puppy playpen that took up about 85% of the remaining floor space in the room. I’ve literally been having to squeeze around him to get to my desk chair, which could only fit up to the desk at an angle. About a week ago, Tom learned to remove the floor of the puppy playpen, grab the side with his teeth and move the thing. So I’d start out with twelve inches between my elbow and the playpen, and end up with Tom right next to me, jumping up and taking off my scarf.


This is certainly not the way to get good work done, and not a good example of effective telecommuting. I feel like I’m trying to get my job done while tied to a wild animal inside a closet.

So I’ve spent today making major changes. I’ve rearranged all the furniture in my office and in a weird overflow room that we never use. The daybed is out of here. The playpen is out of here. My big spacious desk is back. My elbows, my notebook and my cat can all fit on here at one time. I already feel so much better. I’m in the office right now just because it’s suddenly pleasant to be here again.

Of course, Tom is the wild card. The playpen served its purpose but is clearly no longer working. At the same time, I can’t have him under my desk chewing my feet and the tangle of cords under there. So I’ve gotten a tether for him that goes from the back wall all the way over to my chair, but no further. He can get to me, but (hopefully) not into trouble. Easy! (Is this wishful thinking?)

Regardless, I’m actually looking forward to the work day tomorrow. I love a clean office and a fresh start.

2 thoughts on “Breathing Room.

  1. I hope it works but I think it is wishful thinking! Puppies will find a way. My suggestion is to start crate training asap. It gives you time to focus on work instead of monitoring puppy, and it provides a safe resting place for an inquisitive puppy. It protects you and puppy from chewed up electric cords and shoes. Good luck!

  2. I get this, somewhat, as someone who only telecommutes on kids’ sick days. Your post is reminiscent of some recent conversations with my sister.

    Actually, she and I talked late Friday evening. She moved towns a few months back and has been telecommuting to her old office … with a baby at home. She was thrilled to report that daycare (which only had openings two afternoons a week) can now accept her son two full days per week. In February, it’ll go up to three. She is overflowing with happiness at actually being able to get work done uninterrrupted for hours–not seconds–at a time.

    Enjoy the new arrangement!

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