The Walls Come Crumbling Down
…Maybe. Maybe it’s just time for a change and I’m not changing fast enough to accommodate. I shifted jobs here in the fall and although the things I’m doing are difference, I’m still under the same general department, so, not far enough away from my liking.
(I’m just going to say this and then completely ignore that I said it): I think my illness is affecting my job performance. 😦 I wasn’t willing to admit to that because admitting it is a sort of defeat…failure. I want to be strong enough to ignore this pain I feel and work around all the side effects and troubles. I will throw up five times a day, around meetings, if I have to. I’ll sit (lie down) on the filthy women’s washroom and breathe while sweat drips from my body and runs along my skin under my clothes. I will fight sleep even if it’s coming to take me by walking, moving, running outside into the bitter cold, playing music with my office windows open. I will get done what needs to be done…but, apparently the small slips count more than all of that, to my bosses.
I complete, successfully, hundreds of tasks each week for them, mostly stuff I’ve already had to go find on my own. I have no leadership or guidance in this role and although I’m fine with the autonomy of it all, a *little* direction would be nice…feedback maybe? No one ever talks to me or tells me anything but they are most certainly having secret meetings about me.
I wrote my boss (head boss) on Friday morning expressing my concern about not receiving any feedback or direction. I kind of think of my department as a family, of sorts. When I made the decision to tell my coworkers (to ensure I did things the right way around – reported to Occ Health, had an ergonomic assessment in my office so I didn’t injure myself more…told all of the ones I report to. The Director, I was honest with from the beginning, but, I think I was maybe TOO honest. These guys see me every day. I wanted to be open with them…especially the boss, so they understood how hard I was working and didn’t think I was hiding anything from them. When I wrote him, I told him that my liver was having some struggles, and that I’m under a great amount of personal stress at the moment, as I learn to cope with this stuff. I wrote that my support system (D and my GP) were onboard and they were helping me balance my life so I was able to focus my energy on work. Was very honest….very open.
He didn’t answer my email and, better yet, he forwarded it onto someone. He had time to explain and forward the email, but didn’t bother to answer me…not even “we’ll talk soon”. Nothing. I saw him open it in the morning too.
I stayed late, waiting for him to make his usual pit stop at the office before heading home and cornered him. He already had his coat and hat on, was ready to leave. I asked for two minutes of his time. He pushed past me and said he really had to go. I asked, straight out, if he was firing me. He blushed bright crimson, laughed inappropriately, and said we could talk on Monday. Left me standing there. “Okay?” He said….no..not okay, but I wasn’t about to chase him to his car.
So, it’s Monday. I’m awaiting my ‘chat’ that I suspect will involve both him and an HR person. I can’t think of anyone else he’d be forwarded my info onto. Maybe they don’t believe me when I say I’m sick? No one ever asked for a doctor’s note or anything (I happen to have on in my bag…I left it at home though). I was going to bring all my paperwork (there’s a lot) but rather than be reactive and share info they ‘re not entitled to, I’m going to take what he says and think carefully before I offer up any information. My idea is this: Simply state how I’ve been honest with the organization from the beginning, made sure the person I directly report to is fully aware of my condition and always arranged for back up coverage for those times. If I could not arrange for back up, I would work from home on my phone/computer while still taking a sick or vacation day. I alerted Occupational Health and ensured my office was ergonomically set up for the best chance of success. I kept everyone up to speed. Once, when I hurt myself doing my job (dragging shit to a conference centres from my car with no help) I filled out the appropriate report and filed it. I’ve done everything I’m supposed to…I was hiding nothing at all.
Rambling…sorry. I’ll tell them that I have a team working with me to help me be as successful as possible in this role. My physician, my husband and my chronic pain therapist are all on side and are helping me engage in this goal of being able to work full time hours for the next five years. We reassess constantly and made small adjustments. What can they say to that? I mean…that’s pretty solid and I’m SO damn glad I had the foresight to make sure everyone knew what was going on.
I spent the weekend in various states of panic and calm. Every time I had an upsetting thought, I would grab it, stuff it into a mason jar and heat blasted the lid closed. I could see it…new it was there, but couldn’t feel it anymore. I set it on a shelf in my mind and told each little jar that I’d let them all go later, when it was safe to feel things again. Forced dissociation, of sorts. I need to make sure I stay in control or I’ll just blubber like and idiot and things will get worse than they already are. (I’m smack dab in the middle of PMS too…hahaha…funny mother nature!!). Holding it together will be an exercise in resilience and sheer will.
So. If they march me out and take my keys, I’ll write from home. If not, will let you all know how the day plays out. I wish I could just get it over with.
Wish me…well, luck, and wish me calm, if you would. I need a calm, logical mind for this and it’s so hard to force.
Time to breathe. I have an ativan standing by so I can take it right before we chat. Wish we could do it now….*sigh*