Tag Archives: Cat’s Meow

“I cain’t quit you.” [Part 5]

26 Mar

Written 6 years ago, but I read it today and thought, ‘go me!’  It’s funny how things may come to fruition easily when you don’t want it or don’t care.  I was not intentionally playing hard to get or anything like that, I really wasn’t invested.  But it seemed to help.  Also, having a strong background in negotiation skills from my parents making me haggle for spending money or on chores, etc… is really a priceless, valuable skill set to have.

During the dental yesterday, my boss teased me (in a half-serious) way about how she wished I would re-consider and keep cleaning.  It’s a difficult position to fill because it requires trust to let someone come in during off hours.  I told her I had made up my mind and wouldn’t be pressured!  Also jokingly.  And she talked about how it seems like an easy job, but she is having trouble finding someone to work few hours, on off-times, and trusting said person would show up, work, and do a quality job.  Which I told her were all traits I was excellent at, but I didn’t want to have any crutch with this new move of mine.  I had explained how I didn’t test into my LVT (even though it would garner me a job anywhere, be an instant, raise, and “legitamize” me in any setting.  If I had my LVT and failed at any new career endeavor, or couldn’t get a job–it would make sense to use that and work in vet hospitals.  And that’s not what I want for myself.  If I can’t be a vet–I don’t wanna ever be satisfied with a thankless, dead-end, menial job.

And that’s why I couldn’t work for my current job–in any capacity.  It would be just too easy to get scared, and back-slide right back into my comfort zone where I have most experience and where I have an “in.”  Because I know if I wanted it bad enough my work would be happy to have me back.  They know the quality of work I deliver, and vets never want to trust anyone new–and they can always use the help.  So even though I could make the TIME work, I didn’t want to keep even one finger in my past.

But my boss said don’t give a negative answer hastily–just think about it.  And just that little bit of (half-joking) pressure got in my mind.  I thought it would be some income for me.  And I could easily do it.  There would be a flexible schedule and I wouldn’t SEE anyone so nothing could irritate me.

But I really didn’t think about it that much because I didn’t think my boss would press the issue.  And before work I told Cool that IF my boss brought it up, I would just ask how much it was worth to her.  Because I didn’t really think it would come up, and if it did I was almost certain my boss wouldn’t agree on a sum I’d be happy with.

But at work, my boss made a quip about it, then quickly said she was kidding–so as not to be terribly obnoxious.  But I said I had taken her seriously and thought about it.  And she practically scampered across the room asking if I would really be willing to do it.  But I wanted to know the expectations.  And she started saying every day (which is MORE then I currently do). . .  to which I was like–no, no never-mind that won’t work.  But I could see she was desperate because she asked what I was thinking.  And I told her 2, 3 times a week max, on a flexible schedule.  At this point I showed her my checklists that I date as I accomplish things.  I pointed out the frequency in which I currently do things is not as often as she thought (proving vets really don’t know who does what or when just as long as it doesn’t directly affect them).  She said she’d have to think about it–and I figured she wouldn’t go for it and oh well–no loss to me.  But 2 minutes later she came up to me and said that would work.

But I persisted that I needed to know expectations–just to make sure the cleaning I’m doing now is what they want.  Because my work isn’t the greatest at communication, and I didn’t want anyone disgruntled in the future.  So all these talks were loud and in front of everyone.  Which I am normally not a fan of–but I wasn’t all that invested in this.   I had already planned to quit all-together and if I could help without too much headache on my part, great, but if not, great.  But once the ball got rolling, and it looked like I WAS going to keep cleaning, I got a little worried I had not mentioned the financials.  That was the thing that this decision would be about.  Because it did go against what I had decided, was because I bent to pressure, and would hold me back from my future field just a little).  So I wanted to feel like I wasn’t totally being a push-over.  I needed to get MORE out of the deal–and I apparently had leverage.  That is not a very familiar place for me to be.

I tried to deviate from my normal ultra-serious talk and keep it light.  I told my boss we would have time after the dental to talk 1:1.  And she was like, more?  And I was like of course.  So we get up there, and I told her I broke the cardinal rule and told her what she wanted to hear FIRST so she stopped listening.

I said any monkey off the street can clean–you are not paying me to clean.  You are paying for the trust, my dedication, my work ethic, and the fact I already know her expectations.  But of course I was getting nervous–despite having nothing to lose and coming from a position of leverage.  And she was like, calm down you’re just talking to me. Why are you getting worked up?  And I was like, I don’t know, I’m just putting myself out there I guess.  You make me nervous.  And she said, I’m that way too–I wonder why it’s so hard to ask for what you think you’re worth?  And I was like yeah it’s a funny thing because I KNOW what I’m worth, but the asking is awkward.  So I still felt like I had to put out the disclaimers, and included that she wouldn’t be paying a new person what she had paid me so it would save money.  I also said I would be working less hours, but still had to account for the gas, the time, and going back on my plan.  She asked how much I made now.  $12.00.  I think it’s $12.25 she says.  No, $12–and believe me, I know–b/c it’s been more then a year (even after my stellar evaluation) since I got a raise.  Then she put the ball in my court and asked how much I wanted.

Fail!  I hadn’t really thought that far ahead, because I honestly didn’t think the negotiations would get this far.  Always have a number in mind ahead of time!  But I didn’t. . .  And I was nervous, and too flustered to do any math in my head.  So I said I needed a calculator.  Maybe I could clear my head and walk away from the table for a second to gather my thoughts.  She handed me her phone.  With shaking hands (remember I’m nervous and completely unprepared) I plugged in my anticipated monthly fuel cost and my highest utility bill.  Then divided that into an hourly amount for the cleaning hours.  I know–totally random!  It came to $12.66.  But even in my nervous state, I know you aim high in negotiations so you have somewhere to go.  But for whatever reason $13 seemed scary.  I didn’t want to see some sort of horrible expression on my boss’ face or hear that my work wasn’t worth THAT much.  So I went for a nice round quarter-amount:  $12.75, with the expectation we’d go down a little.

Without batting an eye my boss said they could make that work.  And immediately I was regretful I didn’t go higher.  Both people should feel just a little uncomfortable if you arrive at a good number, and my boss had answered all too readily–apparently I had underestimated how much the cleaning position meant to her.  Damn–it was a 6.3% raise!

But I will just consider the extra 25 cents I should have asked for as the benefit of a flexible schedule.  They did try several times to get me to commit to certain days.  But I resisted for study/school/future commitments/vacation purposes.  So I will consider that my “benefits-package.”  Which I guess for janitorial is pretty good, and better then I would have done had I readily agreed to keep on cleaning.  And better then no income at all.  So everyone IS a winner?!  Maybe.

In summary:  Working at veterinary hospitals falls under the heading “I can’t quit you.”  Also, everybody needs to have some negotiation skills at the ready, because you could need to use them at any time.

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Moments of 2015-Bad

31 Dec

I see today (New Years Eve) as a day for reflection.  And I can’t say I’m sorry 2015 is over.  It wasn’t terrible, I’ve had much worse years.  But it wasn’t what I wanted either.  I like to know where I’m going, and in 2015 I never did.  I didn’t know if I would continue with school, and I didn’t know where my career would take me.  In the past, I’ve been severely disappointed when career objectives didn’t pan out, but this time I felt a calmness and grace about the situation.  Still, there is a dissatisfaction.  And now I’m left to really contemplate what I want in life.  But that’s a story for tomorrow, New Years Day, a day for goals and new beginnings.  Today I’ll post a few blogs about worst moments in 2015.  Which isn’t just picking the scabs of wounds, it’s thinking and it’s learning.  Seeing the worst times allows me to rearrange the circumstances to make next year better.

And again, I’m posting for the sake of time and forgoing a lot of re-writes.  I’ll edit later (maybe).

12TH WORST TIME OF 2015:  -Bob, at my new job, introducing himself as the janitor.  Trying to be funny, but offending me.  Insinuating of course he was much better than a crummy janitor.  He’s some client services administrator–big deal.  When he didn’t know that janitorial had been my very last job, and my father had been a custodian for 20 or 30 years.  What a D-bag.

11.  -Human drama at the YMCA.  Deb being all weird toward me because ???  and holding a grudge.  The churchy gal acting like a bitch and treating me like a lowly janitor.  Just coldness and unnecessary drama from people with nothing to keep their minds busy.  It was stupid, but even though I wasn’t invested in the drama, I noticed it, and had to DEAL with it.  Lame.

10.  -Rusty’s doors remaining half open in the winter.  Primarily because it rendered my remote start useless.  And obviously I NEED that.  I hate being cold.  So much so, that I had bought my own remote start and fought for them to put it in my manual–which is a liability for them and usually against the rules.  And I had always loved starting the car from inside the warm building.  But now it set off the alarm, because the doors were open just enough. . .

9.  -The unwelcoming, frosty environment at MSCL for my first 7 months working there.  NOBODY acknowledged me, talked to me, or anything.  I felt awkward and alone.  Those duds and douche-bags were the WORST!  Here’s an example:  I walk in as a brand new employee–and nobody (even my boss)  says hello.  Or I sneeze–and nobody says bless you or anything.  It was as if I was invisible.  I guess it’s because they have high turn-over, and they were change-averse.  And because it’s a lab, so people don’t have great any social skills.  But it still made me feel like it was ME.  And that brought back horrible memories of veterinary social problems that plagued my work life previously.  I had wanted new beginnings and to turn a corner in a new field–and this was not the start I’d hoped for.

8.  -Not getting into the UU AuD program, despite getting the 4.0, having extracurriculars, and working very hard on my application.  Was it the gay-themed activities I put on my application?  Bad interview answers?  Being from out-of-state?  I really don’t have any idea, and I feel like I should be in there.  Easily.  But this is toward the bottom of my disappointments (and the top of this list) because I’ve grown as a person, through my veterinary sagas.  I had to future plan, which wasn’t cool.  I still don’t know what I will do career-wise, which is scary and reeks of failure.  But I didn’t totally fall apart this time.  I took it in stride.  I do wonder how in the heck I didn’t get in that class, because I feel like I really deserved it and would have done an excellent job.  But I’m putting it on to them, not beating myself up over it.  And I’m not sure it’s what I want anyway.  I’m very disillusioned by the costs of school.  And I haven’t gotten ANY return on my undergrad investment.  And the forums scared me off of audiology a little, because they said Hearing Instrument Specialists can do almost exactly the same job, with NO school.  And they probably get paid equal or MORE than actual audiologists.  Also people talked about it being kind of a dead-end career, that’s highly redundant.  And I didn’t know if paying for 4 more years would even be worth it in the end.  But I’m still undecided, and haven’t closed the audiology door all the way.  Perhaps being 14th for a class of 12 was actually a favor to me. . .

7.  -When my parents insisted I call Dad’s chiropractor’s son about getting IN at Costco audiology–NOW, at the same time I frantically trying to complete a heavy-duty YWCA-UT job application and get ready for work at my current job.  They get overwrought and crazy and over-emotional, then there’s nothing for me to say or do to stop that crazy-train.  Unless I do what they say, when they say it, things fall apart quickly.  The whole thing just reminded me of every other time my parents tried to control me.  And how they were probably disappointed in me.  And that’s how the big horribleness of 2007 Cabin-Mansion had really kicked off the first time, so I was scared there would be a big blow up and subsequent melt-down of the relationship we had worked so hard to forge.

6.  -The meeting where work reneged on the full-time schedule, hours, and pay we had negotiated 3 days prior.  I had finagled the best schedule for my weekends, sleep, and time with Cool.  Everyone at work had left the meeting satisfied and happy.   They got coverage on a Sunday, which had been difficult to secure, I got Fridays and Saturdays off and a late-start Wednesday.  It was absolutely perfect and I commended myself for taking a chance and asking.  But 2 days later, they called me back in and told me I’d have to take the legit schedule I had applied for.  Because a girl (previously a bitch to me) who had more seniority, and was better at the job wanted to work Sunday.  And trying to please everyone, instead of defending me and the schedule they had promised me, they gave it to her.  So I felt betrayed (again) and like I had a much worse schedule.  But I also felt trapped.  What else would I do?  I needed this job, or it was back to veterinary assisting.  So I had to just accept it and deal with–while being really angry, frustrated, and un-trusting toward management–and that bitch.

5.  -When Cool picked a fight just 2 days after my good knows of getting a full-time job.  Cutting short my celebration.  Depression strikes this time.  Out of nowhere, Cool knocks the figurative wind out of me by acting like a major jerk.  It was awful, because I had just talked to my proud parents and had been super-ecstatic about my new job, and Cool knocked me down to a miserable level.  I was really sad about it, because I’m ALWAYS supporting Cool and she just didn’t have it in her to even pretend to return the favor–her depressive episode made it all about her.  Again.  I wished she could be supportive and celebrate with me, but instead her bipolar and selfishness ruined it all.  The memory of my new job is still tarnished.

4.  -Getting stuck with all the moving logistics, work, and most of the payments, because Cool went manic and in so doing abandoned me in a time of stress and need.  Which was the WORST because moving sucks anyway.  And there is so much to do and plan, and so much heavy physical work.  It wasn’t fair and I felt alone and unsupported.  Mental illness is the WORST sometimes.  It’s hard not to blame Cool, and that’s not really what I signed up for.  Cleaning the Spokompton apartment by myself was awful.  It was messy and there was so, so, so much left to do.  And it wasn’t fun, and I felt resentful that Cool had already started her job and couldn’t come do her share of the work.  Especially when I was cleaning things SHE had messed up.  Driving Rusty, alone, and wanting to come home and relax very badly, after such a tiring trip and no sleep.  Then walking into a messy house full of manic shenanigans, with a Craigslist ill-fitting futon we hadn’t talked about.  And dealing with having to clean and reconfigure everything, while dealing with a belligerent, unreasonable, manic person.  It was BAD.

3.  -Finding out I was just PRN (after they promised me something different in my interview).  I had interviewed over the phone for the job.  They said I was technically applying for a PRN job, but soon, they were posting a job with more regular hours.  That job was the same duties, but it was a year of guaranteed hours.  This PRN job, which had been posted was 25 hours a week for training, but then was substitute only.  Not stable, and not really what I wanted.  So they hired me during my phone interview, but told me they would call me when (slow) HR got around to posting the year-long job.  Then, I was to apply for that to make the paperwork legit, and that job would be mine.  I waited for the call to tell me that year-job had been posted and to complete that application.  And waited.  When I finally got the phone call from MSCL, they were wanting me to pick a start date for the as-needed job.  And pretended not to remember promising me the more stable-year long job.  I had written it down!  And the way my supervisor acted was callous–and I knew she remembered, but had just reneged.  But I had to take the lessor job, because what else was I going to do?  I needed an income after moving to a new state.  And sure enough on my first day of work, I found out they had hired a coworkers daughter for MY year-long job.  Nepotism had been at play, and as usual I got screwed at work.

2.  -The fear-phobia really, of being offered a job at a veterinary specialty hospital.  I had a sense of dread and sick feeling.  I should have never applied to veterinary hospitals, because my resume is just BUILT for them.  But I was feeling a little insecure and desperate about my guarenteed training 25 hours per week becoming true, as-needed.  I HAVE to work a minimum of 25 hours just to meet my bills, and that was soon to end.  And it’s my policy to ALWAYS interview for the practice if one is offered.  And while I know my veterinary experience is a major advantage in that field, I didn’t anticipate them loving me quite so much and being offered a full-time position on the spot.  The trouble was, it did seem like the best case scenario veterinary medicine could offer.  It was ONLY speciality referrals.  It was the BEST veterinarians in the state.  The hospital hirarchy was set up so there was a legitimate office manager and head vet tech to answer to–not the impulses of vets.  There was a true support system and everyone was on the same learning curve and truely didn’t leave you alone to fail.  And they seemed nice.  And said they didn’t yell–and I believed them.  And the technology was AWESOME.  They really had it all, not just the Idexx lab and digital x-ray.  Like ALL the toys, including MRI, and anything else spectacular.  But I had just such bad memories.  And I knew the schedules and the overwork, and the under-pay.  All the pit-falls, that really, I could no longer live with.  And it’s not what I want in life.  And the delimma was feeling like I HAD to take it, because I really had nothing else to fall back on, but feeling STRESS at the prospect of taking it.  In the end, I made the very, very difficult decision on not going backwards.  It was really hard (and brave) leaving veterinary assisting jobs in the first place, and I had done it for good reasons.  I had to keep up that bravery even when times got tough.  So I declined, but left the door open.  And they liked me so well, that they said to call any time I wanted a job.

  1.  VERY WORST 2015 MOMENT:  Thinking Goose might have thrown a clot to the leg, and worrying about his impending death, and worse, knowing there wasn’t a lot I could do to prevent it.  He randomly fell off the couch twice, and didn’t have use of his back leg.  It was too short to be a seizure (maybe) but didn’t have the pain of a thrombosis.  But my reference point was when the screaming cats had been brought to the vet.  Maybe there were precursor incidents at home that hadn’t been painful, and had gone ignored by owners–I didn’t know.  So of course, I thought the worst.  And I remembered the vets at Cats Meow preparing owners if there were any heart abnormalities.  Telling them to just make the decision to euthanize now, before emotions were involved, because once the clot was thrown, prognosis was grave.  And I remember the cats coming in-just screaming in horrible pain.  And owners saying it happened out of nowhere.  One day, the cat was fine, the next down in back and just SCREAMING.  It was awful to imagine that for my Goose.  And it’s still in the back of my mind, because he is a Maine Coon and they are notorious for heart issues.  But I’m hoping he was just being a clumsy dink, since it’s only happened twice, and the episodes were brief.

My First Week of Work

22 Sep

I mean, not work exactly, but my first non-veterinary/animal-related and non-school job.

It was strange.

duck crossingThe pace is substantially slower.  Like, I could do the whole thing in a very maximum of 3 hours (really getting into details) yet there was 6 of us scheduled and I was there for 8 hours.

It’s a lot of wandering around wondering what else there is to do.  Everyone is in that boat, and we’re on top of each other.  But mostly everyone is good natured about it.  They all know the story.  And I guess better this way then short-staffed like I’m used to.  I’m not used to it, but it’s WAAAAAAY lower stress.

Everyone was nice to me right off too.  They were nicer to me, and included me more on my first day, than some vet hospitals ever had (Emergency, Seattle, Cat’s Meow I’m talking to you).  Which is sad for those past jobs–shame on you.  The gal showing me the ropes said she wished we could normally work together (I’m a good worker, and a nice person if you give me half a chance).  That was something nice.  It’s not like I care what people think about me, and normally the people that don’t like me–well I don’t tend to like them either.  So it’s not that I fret or dwell on the opinion of sheep or $hit-heads as the case may be.  But constant negativity coming towards you eventually drags you down a little.  And that had been happening.  This automatically feels a lot better!

The gal working with me was like, “there’s no way you did a good job–that was too fast.” when we were squeegeeing the milking cowsfloors dry.  But what they didn’t know is I know my way around a squeegee, having cleaned dog runs, cow stanchions, and hogs my entire working life.  So I pretty much immediately became the squeegee super-star of the group 😀

When I showed up on my 2nd day, nobody I knew was working.  So I pretty much had to figure it out and go it alone–I guess 4 hours of training was all I got.  So that was weird, because I still didn’t know a lot of anything.  I wasn’t sure where all the supplies were, what times we were allowed to do certain things, or even what jobs needed to be done.  But I’m used to that story–vets never have time to appropriately train anybody so I’m used to being thrown in the deep end.

My supervisor’s last day was my 2nd day of work.  Which is also a weird way to start a job.  And everyone was so nice to him and made him feel important and special.  I decided on someone’s last day, it’s not only a nice thing, but an obligatory etiquette to, at the very, very least have a card for them.  Which Cat’s Meow didn’t for me.  Nor did Aurora or emergency.  And Noah’s Ark didn’t, but my employers gave me a nice necklace and everyone (important) seemed legit sad to see me go.  And that’s totally on those past jobs, and their bad karma–it has nothing to do with my that they acted so $hitty.  It was nice to see these current coworkers get a card and sign, long messages in it, bake a cake, and invite him out for drinks after work.  All on their own accord.  It wasn’t mandatory or reminded–they just stepped up and did the right thing.  They invited me along too, and it would have been a great bonding opportunity, but there was ZERO chance I could have said no to drinking, so unfortunately I had to decline the invitation.  I’m not a night person anyway so I would have been yawning into my soda.

Here’s my 6th day (2nd week) of work:

-supervisor said I don’t have to do all the work in the 1st hour “pace yourself.”

-supervisor told me I was doing a really good job, going above and beyond and it’s being noticed and appreciated!

-everyone left me and the other new girl (on her 12th day) alone to do the closing tasks.  Which entails clean 3 locker-rooms, by spraying soap on the floors, scrubbing it in, rinsing with water, and squeegeeing it dry.  Then finishing last minute things that require empty rooms, and locking up.

-But the hose only reaches 2 of the rooms, so you have to move it in the middle of the task.

-I couldn’t twist the hose on the nozzle in the 3rd room b/c it wouldn’t thread right.

-Coworker got ready for his date in the locker room so he bent down and hooked it up.  Then he left for the night.

-we couldn’t remove the hose to finish the last 2 rooms.  Wasted 40 min trying to untwist it.

-called co-worker on his date to find out story–left VM.

-That’s OK, I had a plan B and I went to just get another hose.

-2nd hose wouldn’t attach to spout either.

-tried different hook-ups for additional 20 min before my coworker said that hose had been broken.

-That’s OK, I had a plan C, and we used the shower water to rinse (but the hose was still in room 3).

-Finished rm 1 with shower heads and buckets of water.

-Randomly saw big boss who usually leaves at 10 PM, and asked for help.

-Squeegeed floor in room 1 while big-boss worked on stuck hose in room 3.

-he ran in room 1 saying he got the hose off, but the water was on (the nozzle was in my pocket)

-He turned off the water and said the hose pops on and off, it doesn’t twist. . .  Ugh.  Nobody had mentioned that.

-It confused me, because when I tried to put the hose on, I was definitely twisting–it was a twist one and my coworker used that exact same hose. . .

-We felt stupid, embarrassed, annoyed.

-At midnight we set the alarm, and walked to our cars.

-There were 3 additional cars in the parking lot.  Uh oh.

-We had maybe(?) locked the big boss in the building, and alarmed it so touching any door or using a key would set it off.

-BUT we only knew how to arm the alarm–I don’t have or know the disarm code, so we couldn’t turn it back off.

-We couldn’t use our keys to go inside b/c we’d set off the alarm.

-The phone tree is inside the building so we couldn’t call to warn him or ask him how to disarm it.

-The building is too large to knock on doors/windows.

-So we just went home. . .  Oh well.

They may never leave us alone again, I’m not sure.  But I guess that’s not the worst thing.  I don’t always have to accept maximum responsibility at every job I have.  I can just be a worker on the team.

I’m Sick. And Grumpy.

20 Aug

Last night I started feeling worse and worse.  Normally when I feel something coming on I go to bed super-early.  But I will have to work til midnight really soon and my body is already going to be shocked.  As such, I HAD to stick it out until 9:30PM.  I felt so bad that I turned off my alarm clock (I never sleep to the alarm, but I’d be too nervous if I didn’t set it–just in case) for cleaning the vet hospital in the morning.  I try to go there every other day and had gone Monday, so was set to do it today.  But I had called Monday to make Rusty an appointment–and of course Wednesday was the first they could get me in.  And they were very explicit that I should drop off at 7:30AM.  So with the (impending) sickness, I didn’t think I should get up at 3-4AM, drop off the car, and be unable to nap.  If I get in bed after 5:20AM, I CANNOT sleep no matter how hard I try.  Anyway, so I decided I would clean work Wednesday night and still get it done on the every other day.

I slept fitfully because my body is trying to get sick and out of guilt for not cleaning–even though it’s a flexible schedule and I just have to make sure and go 3x/wk.  But I felt bad anyhow.  In the morning (the cats woke us up at 5:30AM, so I didn’t get tons of sleep), we went to drop Rusty off.  And–he had written that I called on Monday, but neglected to put me on the schedule for today.  So skipping work and dropping off was unnecessary because he put me on the very bottom of their full schedule.  Annoying.  And I felt icky so I almost said something about it.

At the track, I had intended to run a record 400m today.  I thought maybe if I warmed up slowly it could still be done.  Because I’m not completely sick, I can just tell it’s coming on.  But there is still time for preventative sleep/warmth/Zicam/vitamins/fluids.  But as soon as I started jogging I instantly felt TERRIBLE.  Everything ached, I felt tired, my muscles were stiff.  It was unpleasant.  I changed my mind about any speed work and just did a slow 2 miles practicing switching long strides and quick strides.  

When I got back to the apartment complex, the trashy-trashy, white-trash trashy lesboz that park next to us were over the line half in our spot.  So I had to squeeze in very tightly.  And when I opened the door, I was confronted with their barf-covered passenger door.  Who pukes on their car??!  Disgusting.  Cool wrote a note, but the tone was annoyed.  And I am all about feeling annoyed, but hesitated to give it to them, because, trashy people have no boundaries and who knows how they might retaliate.  But Cool put it on their barf-mobile anyway.  Fast-forward:  Next time I went to the car, theirs was gone, and the note was crumpled beside Cool’s car. . .

Rewind:  I went home and Cool made a wonderful huckleberry waffle breakfast.  I was feeling so crummy that the impossible occured and I actually was able to nap for 30 min.  But it wasn’t enough and I still felt like crud.  I get, for lack of better word, annoying sickness.  There’s no outward signs, but I feel feverish and fatigued.  Standing in the kitchen to make a frozen drink for Labor Dave about did me in, and I felt really crummy.  So I look a-OK, but feel ick-scum.  If it does come full-on (it hasn’t yet) I’ll get a fever and a head-cold.  Not cool times for public or for sitting in class.

Anyway, I didn’t get a call until 1:30PM asking permissions and pricing.  So I should have gone to work, and Rusty will not be finished today.  Which is super-annoying, because now Cool goes to work and I’ll have to clean at 3-4AM tomorrow–sacrificing more sleep when I’m (getting) sick.

That’s all.  I’ll work on my graph blogs today since standing up seems too much.  That reminds me, there are just 5 days til school starts and I have a HUGE list of things to do before then.  I’m mentally going insane, but my body won’t cooperate–it’s going to be a low productivity day when I need to kick it into high gear >:-[

A Horrible Feeling: WANT

22 May

My mentality has come a long way in two years.  I wrote this in September 2012, and it really did feel terrible to want material items so much.  It’s the kind of thing you know is a bad character trait, it’s not a helpful feeling, you can be better then that.  But at the same time it’s persistent.  I partially blame our culture.  As a capitalistic country, you cannot get away from advertising–and that does have an effect.  Even if you don’t want it to, it gets in your head and may influence thoughts and behavior.  That’s what advertisements are paid the big buck to do.  And as I look back, it was also because of the ethos at my work.  I worked with women who were focused on the newest Apple product, name brand purses, and the cutest seasonal clothes.  It made me feel compelled–to be the same.

I’m happy to say I’m away from their influence, and even before I was I decided that’s not the person I want to be.  I don’t give an eff about brand names, and have no need to buy the latest fad item because it’s the cool status symbol to have.  That’s not to say I don’t want to buy things and that I’m totally reformed.  I still want boots, and more capris, and to be able to afford to move.  I still covet things.  But I’ve improved from this post.

And I’m happy to say I’m being mindful about focusing on free things like gratitude, nature, and love.  Corny but true.  And it’s making me a better person.  I can go most days, in fact, without spending any money in my checking account.  I was going to say without spending ANY money, but you’d be hard-pressed to do that–I use utilities, eat, drive many days, use stuff.  But I’m not really buying much.  Which is good since I’m still unemployed and needing to conserve funds to move for school in a year.  But this draft was in my blog, so here is that old post, which I am a little ashamed about now:

To WANT.

I don’t want to come across like a spoiled, entitled bitch in the post–though I’m certain that’s what will be conveyed. . .

It all started in the summer.  It was my birthday at the beginning of July.  I had 2 gifts to open the day of–they went together and one bag and a card to open a week later.  And I received nothing on my Amazon wish list.  Not that I don’t appreciate what I did get.  It’s just that—–I want the stuff on my Amazon wish list.

It continued at the beginning of school.  With all the cheap house stuff meant for dorms and school supplies available in stores.  I HAD to buy some things for class, and it made me WANT more.  And I want. . .  Stuff.

But in the summer I knew it was impractical to spend any extra money.  Expecially since my hours will be cut back for school.  And especially when I have bills and necessities to consider.  And now–it’s quite impossible, as I had to pull out an emergency loan for school.  Because my hours at work went part time prior to me having to pay my school deposit/books/school supplies.  And the school dragged its feet so all my loans did not go on forbearance in time to beat this billing cycle.  So I had to pay my biggest undergrad loan.  Anyway, what little money that is in my account is not mine.  So I thought maybe writing down the things I want would relieve some of the agony?  I’m not certain what else to do about this terrible feeling of. . .  Well, greed, I guess.

–Dental appointment/cleaning

–Dave Matthews shirt

–a new backpack

–cute running sneakers

–match-E-match sweats (I found cute maroon ones at the Roxy website)

–a tote for swimming stuff/day trips/car camping/running clothes–I could use it ALL the time

–toothbrush holder b/c we currently use a mug

–sounds weird, but I want to stock up on needfuls so I never have to rush to the busy grocery store when I’m short on cash and have an imprending exam.

–ink!  For the computer because school necessitates a lot of printing.

–shampoo

–highlights to blend the gray–ugh. . .

I guess rather than pining over things I don’t have, and shouldn’t buy all at once, I should look around and be thankful for what I DO have.  I ought to use/wear things I haven’t in awhile.  I also should appreciate PEOPLE and feelings and thing money can’t buy.

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Dental is Not Medical?

9 May

I’m sure 4 out of 5 dentists would disagree, Group Health.

 

Health insurance and I have always had a thing.  I don’t really know how that got started, but here’s a quick run-down:

-Before I was 24 (I don’t remember exactly how MUCH before now) my parents yanked me off their insurance early and without any warning.  I think they did this because they had just found out I was gay and were acting homophobic, and to a lessor extent felt I was acting entitled and wanted to save their money.

-Not knowing what to do, and not having the means or motivation, I remained uninsured.  My veterinary hospital job (a small, privately-owned business) of course did not offer insurance.

-During this time, I went to the school medical center where they told me I was too late to get sutures (did nothing for me) under my mandatory student health fee.  It was the only time I utilized my student health “privileges.”  I can’t remember how much it added to my tuition every semester.  When I needed rabies vaccinations they were not covered by my health fee and I had to pay over $300 out of pocket because I wasn’t in their vet program–I think their classes get vaccinated as part of their tuition.

-Also during this time I had to go to the Emergency Room on a Sunday.  I received an IV, anti-nausea injection, and had a brief conversation with someone who charged me $1200 for less then 3 minutes.  I was also charged $840 for emergency room type nickle and diming fees from everyone and their brother who was within a blocks radius.  Which of course I could not afford on my practically minimum wage vet assistant salary.  Though they said they didn’t accept payments, I created my own payment plan and paid $100-200/month until the bill was paid off.  They do not send you to collections if you pay on it consistently.

-Other then that I never went to a medical doctor.  I got glasses & contacts on CareCredit and went to the dentist with my own money.  I paid for my own Invisalign on CareCredit as well.

-For the first time ever, a veterinary job (in Seattle) offered me health insurance as part of my benefits package.  I was dismayed to find out how much my “benefit” would cost me monthly and tried to revoke it.  I can’t remember if they took away my health insurance, paid it themselves, or gave me a raise to pay it.  And I only lived in Seattle for a year, so if I had insurance it wasn’t for very long.  And when I went to the dentist there, I had to pay anyway, because if I had a plan, that wasn’t on it.

-I never went to the doctor or had any health problems during this time either.

-By the time I moved HERE I had already been without health insurance for a long time.  And didn’t have any conditions, prescriptions, or problems, so I didn’t really want to pay for it.  When my job “offered” it I was wise to the me paying for my own benefit scenario and refused.  They were very worried about liability so they gave me a “raise” in order to force me to be insured.   I thought since I had it, I would try to utilize it to get my money’s worth.  But the only thing I really use it for is teeth and eyes.  Group Health covers neither.  But they do cover acupuncture and chiropractor visits (in full).  So that makes sense *sarcasm* And when I called the gal on the phone had major attitude and treated me stupid for thinking dental WAS medical.

-I got glasses using my insurance.  And it was cheaper then when I had paid for it all on my own using the CareCredit card.  The exam and service was hardly outstanding though.

-As soon as I talked about going part-time, my employer yanked away my health insurance.  They did this before I actually went to part-time hours.  The manual said that to be considered full time you had to work that amount of hours for 60 days, so I figured it would be the same going from full to part time as well.  It was not–at least for me.  AND  even though I had anticipated 30 hours b/c our employee manual said 30 hr was considered FULL time, and I mostly wanted to keep my vacation time, but the insurance didn’t hurt.  When I brought that up, they said the employee manual wasn’t a CONTRACT and they were now considering full time MORE hours, (so I couldn’t have that status).  BUT  the receptionist who works exactly 30 hours (only because she works through every lunch and gets paid for it) still got to keep her vacation time.

-My boss then had the audacity to try to pressure me into finding private insurance b/c she couldn’t imagine being uninsured and it was a liability. . .

-During this time I never so much as got a cold and had no need for medical attention of any kind.

-Later when the 2nd vet got divorced and needed health insurance, it was granted to her even though she worked a maximum of 29 hours a week, and that’s being generous because she constantly strolled in 8-8:30 AM (late).  So I guess it’s not the number of hours but WHO YOU ARE at my last job to qualify for benefits.

-When Obama was proposing mandatory health insurance and comparing his plan to Canada’s system, I was fully behind it because Canada knows the story.  Even when work began to fret about the changes, I thought–good now they will HAVE to pay for my health insurance, serves them right for playing so dirty.  But it didn’t happen that way at all.  My job is another small business so they were exempt–I was again on my own.

-I was a part-time student and they made student insurance ONE credit over part-time status.  I was in a loop-hole, and I felt Obama mislead me.  This was not like Canada’s system at all!  This seemed to me like coercion to get healthy people to pay into the system in order to expand benefits for people with preexisting conditions.  And why should I (already near the poverty line) have to pay for other sick people when I am healthy?

-But I am a rule follower so even though I disagreed I tried to see my options.  I applied to Medicare.  Even though I am a part-time student and part-time employee, I was not poor enough to qualify.  Again–who would be if not people like me?  So I checked into my state’s funding for Medicare rejects.  They have a discount program for people of low financial means that are not quite low enough to be considered poverty.  And the news?  My cheap insurance would be catastrophic coverage ONLY (no check-ups, prescriptions, co-pays, nothing at all unless I suffered some tragedy) for a mere $210/month.  And the offers went up from there.  I checked into my other options and I would be looking at $250/mo–at least.  And that’s if I didn’t want anything.  If I actually wanted anything back for that money it was sky-high–I’ve repressed the numbers b/c they were so horrible.

-I have still not had any sort of medical attention, or had so much as a cold (thanks sleep schedule and Zicam!) since I’ve been off health insurance.

-It’s all I can do not to scratch eyes when Planned Parenthood is touting the benefits of the new healthcare plans on Facebook.  And everyone who likes it writes it’s because they have such-&-such condition and now they can get healthcare!  Paid for healthy people like me forced to pay into the system, but that don’t actually use it.  Sounds a lot like redistribution of funds (from healthy to sick, no matter the income) to me.  So I can see the comparisons to socialism–and I am not for it.  I can’t afford to pay for the medicare of some old, sickly smoker. . .

And so that was a little longer story then I anticipated explaining how:

a)  Obama misrepresented his plan and I stupidly voted for it

b)  I got stuck in a whack loophole

c)  insurance companies and greedy bastards

d) employees of small businesses (vet hospitals) are screwed

e)  Cat’s Meow is shady with their benefits, and I’m glad I don’t work there

f)  dentistry is for reasons unknown is not a medical profession

g)  I am willfully uninsured

h) now that I wrote this jinxy post I’m going to get hit by lightning and require a bunch of emergency medical attention.  Hopefully not–but if I did I would try for Care Credit or make small payments. . .

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Objectives-Writing Mad-Libs

5 Apr

I have my 2nd “quiz” Monday.  And I’m pretty worried, because I feel very under-prepared for the thing.  We only get 2 tests in the class, so these are pretty much our entire grade.  And last week, I had to keep dressing professionally and showing up to observe my required clinical sessions–only to have people cancel.  So instead of only having to go twice.  I went three times, and all three didn’t go-through.  So I finally went to the 4th AND actually saw it.  But that wasted SO much time–which I hate.  And I couldn’t even do other studying, because you aren’t allowed to bring anything into the clinic observation rooms and you’re in your pocket-less dressy clothes.  So I couldn’t even study flashcards while I went on 4 round trips, and sat for 3 hours just waiting.  Then, the rest of the week was wasted because back in January, I had signed up to conduct hearing screenings in the community as learning/volunteer.  So that took up 7.5 more hours during the week.

And I’m just waiting for Cat’s Meow to complain that I haven’t cleaned since Wednesday morning.  I only agreed to keep cleaning if it was 3 days a week AND I got to decide the days so I had flexibility.  But I’m sure they will complain, which is going to make me INSANE.  And they just better not, because I’ll go in after I finish doing the hearing screenings this afternoon.  But I’m just waiting for that ugliness.

The point is, I’m trying to study for this thing.  Sometimes studying for exams gets (more) boring.  There’s only so many flashcards and examples you can look at before your mind rebels.  Objectives are the foundation of a session.  They are the vehicles of your main goals, their clarity dictates behavior management, organization, and skill-progression.  The performance, or target behavior is the most important part of the objective.  Because it has to be a countable action.  In order to take data.  Which let’s you write the SOAP, and also shows the treatment is evidence based practice for billing/laws/parent-justification.  To practice, I was writing objectives in pieces (performance/condition/criterion), then in an effort to get Cool to quiz me I tried to make them more interesting.  I wrote them about our little family.  Then had her pick numbers to put the pieces together and make funny final objectives toward our goals.

Example:

The characters:

1.  Choco-Luv (our little kitty)

2.  Goose (the big boy)

3.  Cool

4.  LL

Performance-measurable behaviors:

-1.  will produce

-2.  will clean

-3.  will match

-4.  will take

Condition-context in which behavior will be performed:

1.  with one reminder

2.  in the kitchen

3.  in front of others

Criterion-accuracy level of behavior:

1.  in 7 out of 8 opportunities

2.  for 90% accuracy

3.  10 times in a row

4.  on 6 out of 7 consecutive days

 

So if Cool picks, 2-2-3-4 the resulting objective is:

-Goose will clean, in front of others, on 6 out of 7 consecutive days.

 

You can make the parts as funny as you want!  Maybe I should market this as a study-tool!

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My last Day of Veterinary Assisting

24 Feb

Hopefully my last day ever.  I guess hopefully.  I would like to move forward and not have to go back to it only out of desperation.  But I guess I don’t know what the future holds.  My anticipated last day of my life in the veterinary field was. . .  Anticlimactic.  Which perfectly sums up the 19 years I spent working in the field, honestly.  I didn’t want a fuss.  I didn’t make a big deal during my last 2 weeks of work.  Didn’t tell any clients I was leaving–I didn’t want to be THAT person.  This was my decision and I didn’t want people to feel obligated to say things they didn’t genuinely think to say on their own accord.  But I wanted???  Something.  At least a goodbye or a good job or–I don’t know, not a big party or drama or phoniness–but. . .  Something.

I honestly don’t know how I feel about my last day, former life, veterinary assisting.  When I was giving my heart headresignation I thought I would feel excited.  I’m not, really.  I put pictures up on Facebook, thinking it would make me feel nostalgic.  But it actually made me feel kind of icky.  I didn’t have very many pictures of me working, or even work at all from the last 19 years.  I always had the mentality that there was not even 2 minutes for pictures at work, because I had to BE working every second I was there.  So that was disappointing.  Posting the pictures also made me feel–icky.  There were a lot of Mary, and being reminded of her cheating, horribleness, mid-life crises, and the way she treated me hurt.  The pictures just reminded me of burned bridges, thankless jobs, and made my whole 19 years seem more negative than positive.  Which I hope is not the case–but I guess almost half of those years WERE more negative then positive.  And I thought I would feel relief today.  But really, I felt nothing.  I wasn’t sad/happy, bitter/sentimental, nervous/excited.  Just blank.

I knew they wouldn’t do anything nice for me.  So I made my own nice last day and sent myself flowers.  When I to me from me last day everordered the bouquet I wanted to make sure I wouldn’t feel TERRIBLE that nobody got me a card or a gift or said last goodbyes (I knew they wouldn’t).  So I sent myself flowers, clearly labeled to me, from me.  It wasn’t a sneaky–ohhh I’ll send myself flowers and play it off like someone else sent them.  I was OK with me doing something special for me.  And maybe I wanted to shame them (just a little) for neglecting such an important, mile-stone day.  Except when the flowers actually arrived at work, I guess I lost my nerve and got a little embarrassed about it.  Suddenly I felt like a lame-ass sending myself roses on Valentine’s Day or something.  So when my coworker guessed they were from Cool I just said they were.  Lame.

But I’m glad I did send the flowers, because sure enough, in the morning, there was no card, no cake, no gift. cat face Certainly no balloons wishing me well or thanking me for my service, or congratulating me on a job well done or on my future endeavors.  None of that.  My boss mentioned my last day, just an acknowledgement (which IS better than the nothing I got from EVERYbody else at work), a couple times throughout the day, but never made a big deal, indicated she’d/they’d miss me, or said anything thoughtful about it.  But that’s veterinary for you.

AuroaThere’s such a high turnover rate, such a high burn-out rate, that when people come and go it’s just business as usual to the hospital and those still working there.  Veterinary staff are truly just bodies–fairly easy to replace.  So vets expect people to leave–they quickly turn to finding the next person, covering the shifts–logistics.  It’s just the practical thing I guess.  It’s been much the same everywhere I’ve worked–and for everyone leaving.  There was not only no fuss, but hardly a mention, when I wrapped up my seasonal horse position, moved from Missouri, finished the summer at emergency, or went across the state from Seattle.  And there wasn’t any during my last morning ever as an assistant.

Nor at lunch.  But at 3PM(?) when the flowers came, my boss said, “I’ve had something in my car for you.”  And luckyI’m a suspicious person so I wondered if she HAD specially picked something just for me for this day, or if it was random groceries that happened to be in the car or a gift from someone else still in there, or a gift intended for someone else.  But who knows?  Maybe she HAD specifically gotten something with me in mind and HAD already intended on presenting it at the end of the day.  And it was champagne.  Which she had no idea I can’t drink.  They don’t know enough about my life to realize I’ve given up alcohol completely.  There was no card either.  Which made me more suspicious it just happened to be in there already and when flowers came she felt guilty for being jerks and neglecting my important occasion.  But maybe she brought it just for me and just didn’t put a card–or mention it until my flowers arrived.  I guess I’ll never know, and it doesn’t matter anyway.

1st day of work everWe had to stay late.  And it was snowing a lot all day.  Everyone was eager to leave.  And without pomp & circumstance, they did.  No goodbyes or final words, just leaving like a normal day–like every other normal day.  To them, tomorrow’s just another day and someone else will be there instead of me–no big deal.  I just remembered I had instructions from Cool to walk out that door the last time of being a tech, and take a deep breath.  Let go of the old and embrace my new direction.  I forgot.  I also hurried to my car and started scraping snow off my windows to get ready for a slick and snowy commute home.  I guess veterinary medicine is a part of me too.  It was just another day leaving work.

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“If It’s Important You’ll Find a Reason…

21 Jan

If not, you’ll find an EXCUSE.”

What a day!  It was my big work evaluation and I was really stressed about it.  Mostly, because I’m never on the same page as my work, so these things never end well for me.  Despite, spending a lot of time (in my head, on here, and on my portion of the eval) thinking about my strengths and weaknesses–I was terrified to go over them with my boss.  I guess just because I didn’t want to be surprised, upset, or disappointed?  I’m not certain why, actually.  I was just. . .  Overwrought.  And it’s never awesome.  I told myself I would not be emotional.  I sad eyeswould remain neutral-faced and professional.  Well, automatically my care bubbles out in the form of teariness/crying grimace-face.  And I’m not the crying type.  Not at all, actually–which makes it all the worse.  The almost-crying stuff is just emotion/nervous energy–not cry baby or sadness.  But it couldn’t be stopped, despite trying to prep myself and visualize calmness beforehand.  And despite deep breathing before and during.  That stuff is not the image I want to convey–but knowing it will happen, and that it’s silly, doesn’t equate with stopping it.  So there I was.  Cool was very entertained by my recap of the event.

Anyway, it went better then I expected, they gave me much the same marks that I gave myself (after MUCH gold-starconsideration) and the first marks I got when I began work in 2010.  And the (verbal) comments were–expected, more pleasant then I thought, and typical.  All three of those things.  And sometimes I’m cynical and think complements are more of a “softening the criticism” leadership strategy then completely truthful, but I’ll take what I can get I guess.  I put 3 such items into my positivity jar also, making a total of 5 great things that have happened in 2014.  [Sidenote–I feel severely underappreciated on  daily basis at work, but 4/5 items in my positivity jar are positive statements from my boss,hmm–perception is funny.]

black_dragonfishI did NOT, however, look at the other doctor’s comments.  Not yet.  We have different philosophies, and I knew whatever she said would more then likely make me upset–and I know they are probably based in simmering resentment over my schedule change.  Maybe I’ll have Cool read them first, and if they’re better then I’m thinking, I’ll look.  And if they are much what I expect, I’ll just file them away–I don’t need a bunch of negativeity, and even MORE bad feelings between that doctor and myself.

And that was a long introduction to say that I’m always looking to improve myself, even if I only present that to myself, in private (and you of course).  Here is WHY my 2014 goals are important for me to accomplish to better my life, which will provide me with more motivation to follow through on the small daily steps in order to master them:

putting on the board

-add in exercise AND produce (subtract bad things)

This is important, because I want to FEEL better.  I want energy, less fatigue, and no health issues.  I love my emotional state when I’m running and abstaining from alcohol as well.  It takes some anxiety away and helps me have a more positive outlook.  Plus, being hot never hurt anyone’s self esteem and feeling strong is a good way to feel.

-have gratitude, say nice things

I under no circumstance want to be phony or an eternal optimist.  That isn’t me–I think it’s OK not to grasshoppercompletely hide the darker sides.  It’s authentic–everyone has that part of themselves and the world isn’t all roses.  That said, there is nothing wrong with nothing small things.  I like that quote about it’s not the person who has least that is the poorest–it’s the person who wants MORE.  And as a go-getter, it’s easy to get bogged down by where I’m going, instead of loving simple pleasures.  This also takes time from worrying, and trains my brain to stop being greedy.
-straighten out my sleep

I hate being tired, feel guilty when I’m dragging and unproductive, and my temperament and emotions are more unruly when my sleep isn’t regulated.  Even though finishing everything by 7PM is a pain sometimes, the next da is ALWAYS better when I do.
-min. extraneous spending and save a small amt $ every paycheck for moving to CO

Because I want out of HERE.  It’s among my most important goals to make a difference in my work and improve my surroundings.
-volunteer

It’s something good people do.  I’m a big believer in giving if you have something to give.  And secondly, that’s where the scholarship money is–community service.  But that’s not the primary reason.
-Judge Cool less and show her more kindness and love

DMB at the Gorge 012Our love is special.  She is one of the only people who truly understands me.  And she tolerates my “stuff” and I love that about her.  We are just meant to be.  It is important to me to convey to her how much I appreciate her and love us, because we get bogged down in reminders, details, and shennanigans.
-Take pride in my appearance: Wear contacts more, use makeup, wear jewelry

Not in a sorostitute, capitalistic way, just as a taking care of myself and caring about myself.  It also shows I care about where I’m going and gives a picture into my health and mental state.  Which is improving all the time.
-worry only 30 min/day (instead of all day & night) AND think positively for at least 10 min/d

Because worry makes me sick inside.  And stressed and tightly wound and unpleasant to be around–for both others and myself.  And I feel 100x better when I don’t worry.  I feel like gratitude is the thing that cancels out worry and I’m on board with that.

rainbow cloud 1

-make a list, grocery shop, cook ahead

This is just better for scheduling, money, and health purposes.  A little planning helps a lot of areas.  The follow through will stop restaurant eating and munchie grabbing.  And when the pantry is stocked I feel like a productive adult, AND it saves valuable study time.
-Don’t over-pluck eye brows.

Emma Watson dark eyebrowsBecause I’m 30 now.  And I have full brows >:-{ It’s happening and I’ll like it and have to work at them less when I work more with nature instead of fighting against it.
-increase eye contact

This not only helps me look less like a suspicious criminal or autistic socially-inept person, but I can see more intent in other people if I look at their eyes.  It instills trust, it’s professional, and it’s a good feeling, mutually.

So as you can tell, I put more effort into some of these than other, more more the afore-mentioned 7 PM bed time then anything.  Maybe I’ll edit a little later, but now I’ve GOT to go.

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From Bad To. . . Better?

15 Jan

I’m going to hate my Wednesday schedule.  My class starts at 10 AM on the dot, which means I have to leave work right at a certain time–not conducive to a veterinary schedule, especially surgery.  The struglasarus-LVT is scheduled with me.  She is slow, and I don’t really trust her.  This is a concern because I already have a lateness phobia.  And this particular class is built-in required observation hours.  So you can’t be late.  And if you miss one, you miss that observation hour–and I have no idea where I would make it up as I have no contacts HERE.  Add in a 7-8 min drive, an unmeasurable amount of time to find parking (in the over-sold lots), and 8-10 min walk from my car to the building, and still arriving in the room early enough to find a (good) seat [9:55AM at the very latest].  I have to leave by 9:35AM and hope everything goes smoothly.  There’s no wiggle room, and dire consequences. Well, it’s not awesome.

I was first VERY worried about getting everything finished at work this morning AND making it to class on time.  Stressed off the heezy, actually.  So I made sure to alert everyone at work about my concerns.  But then, with disapproving looks, body language, and little comments like, “You have a HALF hour to get there.”  I felt:  Guilty, worried, disgruntled, helpless, and frustrated.

Because:

-This is the only time this class is offered, it’s not like I chose it.

-I hate the new schedule too–I don’t want to leave work in the lurch OR be late to class.  And I worry about something going wrong on both ends (work and school).

-It makes me afraid they will change my schedule to Wednesdays off and put me back on all day Friday, in which case I’ll have to quit and search for a new job in the middle of a semester to keep my sanity.  And nobody likes that story.

-It’s not my fault that my school arranged the class at this time, that parking over-sells the lots, or that our LVT is incompetent.  I wish my work would tell the other gal to get her head out of her a$$, and quit giving me such grief.  And I wish school would be willing to work with me in ANY way.  But those things will never happen so I’m left hopeless.

And probably more.

And add a impending work evaluation to that and I was really stressed/worried/crabby when I got home from class.  And I thought my eval was probably going to be awful, because of all the schedule drama and intrapersonal cat-fighting.  But I KNOW I’m a good employee, and a lot of my attributes are obscured for emotional reasons.  So in order to calm myself, I went through every eval question and wrote an example of what I do in that particular area.  Which, actually made me hopeful, because when it’s all in writing and I can cite examples, it makes me feel confident I could defend any unwarranted attacks on my character.  Then, because the eval calls for rankings, I gave myself a 0-10 ranking on each subset.  Then, averaged those for a “grade.”  But then I realized you can’t average a scale as a percent, so I re-did it with a +1 good, 0 neutral, -1 bad.  Then averaged those numbers to quantitatively figure out my eval.

And I was happy to see when all said & done I have a 72%, and most of my characteristics fall into the meets expectations catagory–with a couple high in that box, and 1 item (motivation) even topping out exceeds expectations.  Being above average (especially when I judge others to fall below average) made me feel a LOT better.  Especially since I have data and examples to back up my claims.  Then I decided I’m HAPPY about evaluations because it will be a private, earnest, un-heated discussion.

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