Archive for The grind

control issues

These are some crazy times we’re living in.  Between the Eurozone meltdown and the debt ceiling crisis here at home, work can sometimes feel like a battle zone.  I can tell you this much, there is a lot of panic and massive mood swings floating about in the markets.

And then, of course, my husband’s company announced layoffs and promptly let a bunch of people go.  Luckily he made it through this time but they were pretty clear about the fact that they aren’t done.  He works in the same industry as I do but right now he’s working for one of those quasi-government agencies so layoffs are pretty rare (unlike investment banks which go through a routine “pruning” exercise every year or every few months it seems these days) and that makes this all the more that disturbing.

But maybe this is just God’s way of hinting at the fact that I really need to work on trusting Him and not in my own plans, as I love to do.

Of course, the hubby and I imediately started making contingency plans for what we’d do if he does lose his job in the near term.  (Among them?  Move to Arizona – which surprised me because if two Cali-born-and-raised-never-lived-outside-of-perfectly-temperate-year-round-weather people like us could consider moving away, the situation here must look pretty bleak.  (Hm….yup, sure does!).  Still don’t know if I could do it, but I never thought it’d be something I’d even THINK about).

Guess old habits die hard.

not to get all rebecca black on you, but, IT’S FRIDAY!

Another hectic, chaotic and above all, another change-filled week at work to follow the last one.

Long story short?

I lost half my team this week.  They moved onto better opportunities so nothing to be sad or disturbed about on that front, but well, change always makes me uncomfortable.  I know this makes me a total lame-o, but I’ve always been one of those people who approaches major changes in life with a weary suspicion as opposed to exuberance and/or excitement.

Although part of me does wonder…

In my last post, I was sort of all but flat out asking God for a sign, don’t you think?  I don’t know if that came through, but I was really praying last week, is this job right for me?  Is this what I should be doing, not even long-term, but even right now?  I was starting to really wonder if maybe the time was here for me to seriously start thinking about whether or not this is good for me – mainly because I was starting to feel like it probably isn’t.

But all the things that happened this week?  They felt like doors opening for me without me even having to move.  Doors I still don’t even know if I want open, but nevertheless doors that seemed to have been blown wide open by this crazy breeze called life.

So maybe this is my sign?  Not the one I expected, but still, maybe this is it?

I’m still not convinced that this is what I’m meant to do for the rest of my life, but I do recognize that especially when it comes to my career, God has always spoken pretty loudly and clearly.  Things have always just gone in a direction where things have ultimately worked out for the best – that is of course unless I’m completely wrong and have actually gone done a terrible path that will actually ultimately lead to an early demise and lots of misery.

I don’t know!!

Agh!

Why can’t I just be happy about good things happening?  What the hell is wrong with me?

Don’t answer that.

you’re just as far in as you’ll ever be out

Despite my silence, life is definitely happening.

Except, of course, the one thing that I really, really want to happen.

That?

Not so much.

But, what we are having is another round of cuts at work.  That’s always unbelievable fun right?  This time felt even worse than the previous one(s) since someone I’ve worked with pretty closely since I started (I even interviewed with him!) was let go.

And it’s funny because I’ve FINALLY gotten my butt into gear and started to actually schedule some acupuncture consults/initial treatments and yesterday I finally used this grou.pon that I bought back at the beginning of the year and had a consult/mini-treatment..and…part of the reason I actually felt so motivated is because of how stressed out I’ve been lately.  Over work…and being overworked.  Two weeks ago I started “backing up” a fourth person who moved out from the mothership and while I appreciate the confidence that they must have in me to have me support so many peoples’ business…it’s…a…lot.  Like a freaking lot.  I’ve literally only had time to go get myself lunch ONE day this week so far out of four.  Since two of my team members are out again tomorrow, my guess is I won’t be able to tomorrow either, but we’ll see.

I have to time my bathroom breaks.  People are always asking me for shit.  Every. Fucking. Minute.  Of. The. Day.

For eleven hours.

I wake up in the middle of the night thinking about work.  I think about work on Saturday mornings.  Mostly I’m thinking about how I’m not learning fast enough and need to read more and omg what if people start to question why I don’t know more than I do after nine months?!

And then I breathe into a paper bag for awhile (oh and this past Saturday morning in particular, I strongly considered taking one of the anti-anxiety pills they gave me at the hospital last year but eventually decided against it since I really didn’t want to see what fun side effect might come along with shoving yet another pill into my system).

And I realized while I was thinking about all this that I’m a very tightly wound person by nature.  I am easily irritated.  Even by the little things.  Maybe, especially by the little things.  And I’m pretty sure my job is only aggravating that lovely trait because I look around me and everyone I work with is sort of the same way.  I guess because it’s our job to make sure things are done perfectly and um, well, life is the opposite of perfect.

When I told my friend this morning that I need to be more zen-like and calm, he told me, “If you’re looking for relaxing you’re in the wrong industry.”  I’m not discounting other peoples stress at all, but I’m pretty sure that there aren’t that many jobs where you feel more constant pressure (other than military and those who are dealing with peoples’ lives).  There’s a lot of money at stake and things are usually moving very quickly.  A small mistake can cost the firm a lot of money (client’s too, but that usually also ends up costing the firm money when the client gets pissed and stops doing business with us).  And as the person in the middle, you have no real power, but you will get all the blame from both sides.  Part of our job (and yes, we are paid pretty well for it) is simply to absorb a ton of abuse and think of ways to circumvent the abuse by minimizing everyone else’s mistakes by anticipating said mistakes and somehow preventing them.

You have to be “on” all the time, just in case.  And when you actually have to physically leave the desk to, God forbid, pee, if someone needs you while you’re off, that’s your fault.  Bodily functions are not an acceptable excuse.  ‘Cause you should have been there.

So I was thinking, I’m essentially I’m a person with a disease that is aggravated by stress in a job where I will be stressed out by default.

Is that smart?

I’m thinking probably not.

But, I really can’t afford to not have a job or even take a lower paying one so…I’m completely stuck.  I was wondering if I’d view being let go as a sign from God, I think I would have, but I definitely am thankful that I wasn’t.

I just need to overcome my stress.  Which is why I’m looking into acupuncture.

Hopefully this way I can keep my job (which I actually do like when I look beyond running around like a chicken with my head cut off for eleven hours straight and waking up at 4am) and not give myself a massive flare when I try to taper eventually….

clearly time for a vacation

I realized today that I still have yet to let go of the adolescent notion that somehow life is supposed to be fair. 

An old acquaintance from the, er, crazier days of my youth is pregnant, or at least all signs point to that being the case (thanks ambiguous FB status updates!). 

As mentioned before, I’m surrounded by pregnancies and talk of offspring on a pretty much nonstop basis, most of which doesn’t really bother me. But this one sort of feels like that one other one that did.

I know that I have no right to judge.  That everyone walks their own path and that every child is a miracle.  Trust me, I know what I’m about to say reflects poorly on me and my character in so many ways.  But it’s the truth, it’s what I’m feeling deep down, and if I can’t be honest here, then I’m not being honest with myself right?

So here’s me in all my honest ugliness. 

I can’t help but feel like it’s not fair. 

She partied through high school, never even made an attempt at college, and generally seems to live a lifestyle that one would not reconcile with having an infant.  People change, I know, obviously I’ve changed quite a bit since then myself, but from what I can see (again, only through FB updates so perhaps not a fair picture, but my brain is not in a fair place right now) not much has. 

And I had to block her status updates because no, I can’t do it.  I can’t watch this unfold.  I just…can’t.

It makes me question my whole life.  It makes me question everything I’ve done.  All those “right” things. 

Sure, I’ve had my blips along the way, and continue to, but shit.  There I am five days a week, struggling to wake up in the dark so I can work my eleven hour day to pay my damn mortgage.  Why did I do all this?  What am I working so hard for? 

It doesn’t seem to be paying off at the moment. 

I know how I sound, I know how lucky I am.  I have no right to complain.  Sure I’ve worked hard for everything I have, but a lot of people have worked hard and have nothing to show for it…for better or for worse, sometimes that’s just how life works. 

But when I see someone else who hasn’t necessarily achieved “success” in the eyes of society and yet has still managed to achieve something I may never get…it feels like how I felt when I was about to graduate from college and had no idea what was coming next.  I had spent nearly twenty-two years believing that upon the completion of this major milestone (college), the future would suddenly fall into place – only to come to the harsh realization that there was no epiphany waiting around the corner and I was still going to have to figure out what to do with my life.  I suddenly felt like I had been lied to my whole life but I couldn’t figure out who exactly had been feeding me the lies. 

I’m just so…tired.  Tired of trying so hard.  Tired of being sick.  Tired of my own, plentiful, shortcomings. 

I recently broke my second, stronger, more reinforced NTI – the one supposedly designed to reduce grinding over time based on how it dispersed pressure on the jaw.  The first time I broke it, my dentist told me he’s never really seen anyone break it in their mouth before, usually when people need replacements it’s because a pet got to it or they tossed it out on accident.  And yet, I’ve gone through two now (and for the record, am still not sure where the piece I cracked off this time went, hopefully I didn’t swallow it).  I asked my dentist this time (same clinic) why it didn’t seem to be working for me and she said, “You must have a lot of stress, there’s nothing we can do about that.”

Darn. 

It’d be nice, though, wouldn’t it, if it could all be fixed by something as simple as a night-guard?

Good night.

Just got home from the dinner and overall am pleased that at least it doesn’t feel as though I embarrassed myself horribly.  Because oftentimes, I’ve made such an obvious fool of myself that there’s simply no denying it.

The client brought his gf, who was nice and also chatty, thus I had few opportunities to stick my foot in my mouth.  Very positive development.

Less positive was when the conversation turned to politics.  Not my favorite thing to discuss, particularly not when it turned specifically to the Iraq War and the whole wmd argument and blah blah blah.  Not a fun topic for me given my history, so I stayed silent.  I will say this now though.  I hate, hate, hate the canard that the whole war was premised on the existence of wmd and the failure to find wmd made the war illegitimate.  The war was NOT all about wmd, wmd were merely a compenent of a much larger argument for the war.  In fact, if I didn’t have to go to bed in 10 minutes before this ambien kicks in (or is it already kicking in?) I would go dig through my archives and find the post I wrote outlining all the arguments for why the war was necessary (prior to the invasion) .  But anyway, I discovered long ago that these conversation are simply not worth having, particularly in these situations where there is clearly zero upside. 

Anyway, the most hilarious part was at the very end, when the bill had been paid (by my boss) and we were heading towards the door.  The client suddenly starts to talk shop with us, giving us some of his axes (things he’s looking to buy) for like five seconds before we went our separate ways.  It was truly bizarre.  I felt like I was being thrown a bone.

Funny.

Overall, glad I went.