Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Tuesdays are usually not good days for me at work.  Monday is ok;  after all, I've just had a weekend off.  But Tuesday, so far from next weekend and a reminder that I have to do this again for 3 more days......somehow it just usually doesn't go well.

Today was the king of bad days.  For the past few months, we've had a dynamic new boss who is revamping our entire department and the way we operate - a much needed change.  I admire this boss a great deal - she is nice, she does not make anything to do with work personal, and she is fair. 

So what's the problem you say?  Well, at 55, I must be aging fast.  By the way  - the boss lady is just about the same age - or older than I am, but she is a juggernaut, a hard worker, very dedicated and on top of everything. She also has a Master's degree and has taken leadership training.  Me?  I'd love to be home growing veggies, trying to fix up our house, reading, homemaking, etc. 

Five years ago after a great upwards run at my job, where I had been in an important position for over 9 years, pretty successfully, everything changed.  A new director came on board at that time and his secretary wanted her own people, not to mention the outgoing boss left things a bit messy as far as rules go, for which I was held accountable.  Not very fair, but that's often the way it is. 

I was placed in a department where I have been woefully inadequate for a long time.  I've learned quite a bit, but I don't have the technology background to enable me  to grasp more complicated things quickly - I don't have the frame of reference.  I was put there by the director because it was the only other job on location that had the same salary grade. 

So, I'm getting older, I feel less than equal to my job - and for five years nobody really cared because our department was ignored and no one really cared what we did.  That sounds like it might be nice, but it was a downer and a discouragement, and the stress of knowing I not only wasn't equal to the job, but couldn't learn what was necessary unless I went back to college (an idea that horrifies me)......wasn't fun at all.  There are some courses I could take within my system that would allow me to understand things better but - get this - the main one is taught by my husband's ex-wife.  I don't think I could take that course....I would be too uncomfortable.  So... I was the dumb one in the department.  Still am to a certain extent.

So - onboard comes Ms. Dynamic - she wants me to learn all I need and has made workers from another location available to teach and demonstrate in between their copious work load.  I have learned a lot more and have been treated like one of the team, someone who has strengths and can do more with training.

Today there was a meeting that I knew about, scheduled for when I arrived for my shift.  I got there, evidently said, "are we still having a meeting?", which I don't remember, and then promptly moved on from the answer, which was affirmative - and went to try to get some of my work load whittled down.  I'm not working as fast or as accurately as would be liked - and I'm trying very hard to do better.

I think I'm just getting tired of working, tired of constant changes where one never knows how one will fit in after all is said and done.  And these changes are probably going to happen again in a few months, with yet another new boss. 

I forgot the meeting completely.  I went off to do a work order in a different part of the campus - and if that isn't bad enough, I forgot to carry my radio OR my cell phone so I could be contacted.  I have a tendency, when carrying radios, wires (I work in technology), tools, my keys, directions for certain fixes - of leaving something somewhere and having to retrace to see, where I left it.

I need a tool belt or a fanny pack or pants with lots of loops to hang things on, I guess.

So on top of missing the meeting, they called me on the radio - no response because, of course, my radio was on my desk.  They tried texting and calling me, but of course, my cell phone was also on my desk.

When I made it back to my building about 45 minutes later, my boss was coming out of the room where the meeting had been held and  said quite disapprovingly, "where were you - we tried to contact you....etc. etc."  She did not raise her voice or even sound angry - just disgusted maybe and disappointed. in my performance.

Me?  I was mortified, so embarrassed I could have willingly been sucked into the earth and felt better, not worse.  I don't believe in making excuses when there are none and the whole fault is mine.  There's no one else to blame, no traffic detained me, no emergency took precedence over the meeting - I just plain forgot completely.

 Rest of day?  Tearing up from a total feeling of absolute mortification, fear that I'm losing my mind and my working edge, fear that I'm getting senile - you name it.

So after making it through a full day feeling like I'd be happier walking into traffic, I'm home, taking a Xanax and going to sleep very soon - this day needs to be done for me.


Unknown said...

K . . I tried to call you but your cell phone mail box is full so I called the D man. . .He told me you had a bad day . . . So, tomorrow WILL be a better one. You are NOT losing your mind or your edge or anything like that. I can tell you what it is - it is the stress that you have been under. When I was still working for United Healthcare, I can't tell you the number of meetings I missed - why? because I forgot - why? because I was so stressed about the job, felt inadequate and my boss was usually not so nice about it. I also forgot a couple of meetings when I worked for Taconic too - again - it was stress. I even forgot meetings that I had put in my calendar - why? because I forgot to check my calendar. When I feel stressed I just forget things - even things that I had remembered earlier in the day. . . .stress. So what can you do for yourself to help relieve that stress?? What would help you get through? I won't suggest anything because I'm not you - but it is not hopeless and there is NOTHING wrong with you - you are just reacting to a great deal of stress. Maybe talk to the D man - he knows you really well and his job is a stressful one - maybe he will have some tips or ideas to help you put things in prespective. Stop being so down on yourself - you are a highly intelligent, deep thinking individual AND you're younger than me and therefore have a really great advantage . . . .

Susan Humeston said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susan Humeston said...

Thanks - I didn't think of the stress aspect, but you're probably right. The D man told me I was grinding my teeth in my sleep the other night, which a lot of people do. It is said that is caused by stress, but who knows.

Anyway - I'll call you later. I feel better after a LOT of sleep last night.