Saturday, March 30, 2013

I think I can, I think I can

Tomorrow I am flying to Texas. Sometime during the week I will drive from Irving to Mesquite to sign a lease on my new place. On Friday I will fly back to Ohio. Hopefully the movers will come on Saturday (or else Sunday or Monday) and they will pick up the few things I have left to move for me. It will take 10-14 days for me to get my shit. Depending on when they come, I will leave on either Sunday or Monday to drive to Texas with Johan and, possibly, my mother.

I'm terrified. But I am now asking myself why is it that I'm so scared. I'm 32 years old and I'm not doing anything that others haven't done a million times before. My friends all assure me that they are not worried for me because they know I can do this and that I'm strong. The only one who questions me is my mother. Let's face it, mothers will always worry and I am her baby girl. But her worry is insidious and makes me question myself. So I'm going to list reasons why I should have confidence in myself in hopes that I'll start feeling stronger and braver.
  • I managed to survive being semi homeless for about six months. My mother kicked me out of the house and I lived, in secret, in my ex boyfriend's room for awhile. I then slept at my place of employment until I finally went to college.
  • I put myself through college. By put myself through, I mean I took out loans so didn't have a parent to pay for it. 
  • I lived in London for 3 1/2 months during study abroad and toured Rome on my own.
  • I identified bipolar disorder in myself and got treatment.
  • I moved from Delaware to Ohio. I'm going to stop saying this doesn't count just because I was with J. Yes, I didn't do it on my own but I did do it.
  • I supported myself and J when we landed in OH. I went on job interviews when I was going numb on one side and sounded deaf (read: in the midst of my first MS attack)
  • I carved out a career after a lifetime of thinking I had no ambition. 
  • I divorced J, who is a nice guy, because as hard as it was, I knew it was the right thing to do. For both of us. 
  • I've climbed a 600 foot waterfall.
  • I've aced a neuroscience course I took by accident.
  • My name is in the acknowledgements of a biography written by a former professor. 
  • I've managed to survive my ex husband's cancer scare and my own health bullshit from two Junes ago that resulted in my MS diagnosis. During my scare, I went to the ER a few times, had a CT, had a lumbar puncture, and experienced loss of vision in my right eye. But I made it through (and got my vision back)
It's a short list but I'm clinging to it. I've gotten through some rough times (rough in a general sense as I've not lived in a war zone, escaped genocide, etc) so I think I can totally do this. I can. I have to. I have it in me. I am not weak. I am not incompetent. I am not climbing Mount Everest.

I can do this.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Benefits of being kind of poor

I'm not impoverished by any stretch of the imagination but I do live paycheck to paycheck and don't know what it is like to live differently. Who does at this point in the U.S.? But this has it's benefits.

When I met J, we were both in college with no money. We both graduated and got shitty jobs that paid low wages. We couldn't afford anything so when we moved out of our family homes, we brought what we could from home. When we moved to Ohio it was excruciating. Packing up everything into a small uhaul and driving it with my car attached was brutal. I decided then and there that I was never owning anything nice until I was where I was going to live for a very long time.

At this point, I have three pieces of furniture that I have to move: a bookcase that my grandfather built, my childhood nightstand, and my brother's childhood desk. I also feel that I must move my bed because it isn't even two years old. Everything else is disposable and was acquired from the side of a dumpster, outside a liquor store, or was given to me by someone else who was moving. If I have anything that seems "nice" it was totally free. So I'm moving with not a lot of stuff and will have a fresh start.

Tits came over this morning and helped me throw things out and pack a few things. On Saturday night I had a guy come to my door from an energy supplier who wanted to sell me on their product. I told him I'd already signed up and we got to talking. Next thing I know, he's in my apartment and I'm showing him my guinea pig and then he's picking out stuff he wants. When I get back from Dallas I'll give him a call and he'll come back with a friend and his wife to take his stuff and help me move the rest to the dumpster. The fucking mid west, man, it's unbelievable.

I'm still overwhelmed of course. After Tits left I didn't do a damned thing. I just sat and thought about how I can't do this. Then I remembered all the shit Tits and I talked about and I realized that of course I can. She did something similar about a year or so ago and under circumstances that were totally shitty. She's a tough broad and you'd never know it unless she told you but she's been to parts of hell you can't even imagine. But she made it through and when you ask politely "how are you?" in the hallways, she always says "can't complain." She says that shit so often I told her I'd teach her how to complain if she wanted.

It's funny. I've known Tits for less than six months but consider her a really good friend. We have both told each other things with the disclaimer of "what I'm about to tell you goes to your grave." I'm really sad to leave her. I'm sad to leave a lot of my friends. Here was my first East Coast girl and I'm leaving her (OK, Storm is from Jersey but she's not lived there in forever). This happened before. I moved to Ohio and met BFF and we got close. We spent every weekend together at one point but then she moved to Florida. I'm doing that now, only instead of moving with my stuff to be back where my family is, I'm erasing my life in a lot of ways and moving to Texas where I have zero family.

It is daunting and scary. But I have the motivation and inspiration from Tits to tell me to suck it up and do it. If nothing else, I'm not going to let her call me a pussy so I have to do this. And whatever, I don't entertain now so I don't have to think about how I can't invite people over because I'll have three chairs and a bed and nowhere else to sit. 

 ead, and calling me a pussy.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Resignations

As I've already said, I've taken a new position within my company. However, due to recent events, I have resigned altogether to follow my true life's calling: writing the memoirs of the newly retired Pope Benedict (Benny as I call him because we are hella tight).

The election of a new Pontiff today was really what pushed me to finally take the leap. Pope Francis's succession coincided with my finally receiving the rewards brochure so I was able to order a watch to mark my five years at my present company. I really wanted a new watch and have been sticking around for this only to have it appear on this magnificent day.

I know it sounds crazy, taking on the incredible burden of rehabbing Benny's image. His partying is legendary amongst the Vatican City and more than one thirteenth century illuminated manuscripts have been ruined during his benders with the aging rock stars. What few know, and what my scant audience will be privy to, is the fact that Benny did not resign his post due to health issues, as previously stated. Instead, he was "gently nudged" by the cardinals to step down because they could no longer take his base carnality, his atrocious eating habits, and his practical jokes. To be fair, one of the German cardinals suffered great humiliation when Benny saran wrapped the toilets. It took a great deal of damage control and covering up to prevent scandal.

So as well as writing his memoirs, I will also be working as a PR person. I am going to work hard to get him on next season's "Dancing with the Stars" and am in talks with various American morning news programs to get him to appear during the cooking segments. I know what you're thinking and I agree, he does look like a James Bond villain. But I want the world to see the man behind the Pontiff and if I am successful, he will win the hearts of billions.

This is, undoubtedly, hard work. I've already turned down three movie producers (two Americans and one Japanese) who wanted to cast him as the bad guy in action movies. I've also had to be very vigilant about not allowing him to appear in such "blue" movies as "Penny Takes a Pontifical Pounding", "The Pope and the Poop Shoot", and "Three Girls, One Pope, So Many Holes". Benny likes his vag, what can I say.

I hope you will all support me on my new journey with love, understanding, and, of course, ground floor investments. My present working title for the memoirs is "Fifty Shades of Faith - The real life of a 21st Century Pope".


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Afterwards

No one wants to do my job, at least, that's how it seems. The short notice means that my office is scrambling to find where to place my soon to be former responsibilities and it is turning into a nightmare. Suddenly people are realizing the enormity of what I do.

That isn't meant to make me seem like a martyr. I do a lot of behind the scenes kind of things and I've been self-sufficient for the past two plus years so no one really had a chance to understand how involved my job has been. Now they are seeing "oh shit, no, this isn't something one person can reasonably be expected to do and we probably should have had some back up for business continuity." So I'll be training four people who have full time jobs to take pieces of mine so that things don't slip through the cracks.

The next person who asks me "what resources do we have available to help with this" is getting punched in the throat. Because I haven't had any resources. I've been doing this bullshit on my own, shouldering the responsibility and blame alone. If I had any resources do you think I'd look so stressed and miserable all the time? I didn't even know I looked like that until about a18 months ago when I started to try and get Jilly Bean, my replacement under Boss, to switch jobs with me. "Wanna switch jobs?" I'd ask? "Uhm, not really. You look stressed out a lot of the time" she'd say. That or "no, you look really unhappy most of the time."

I find part of this whole ordeal insulting because so many people thought it would be so simple to replace me. I'm not irreplaceable and there are people who can do what I've done far better than I, but I've been busting my ass for years and no one realized just how hard I've been working or how complicated my job is. Another part of me is just confused and a bit disturbed that the higher ups weren't more prepared. And I'm not going to lie, part of me just thinks "well, fuck you, I did my part and I have nothing to regret so this is on you. Thanks for making me work like a dog without noticing. Bet you'll notice now."

That's ugly, isn't it? The thing is, I'm just one part of the company and if they'd had any foresight, I wouldn't matter a lick. As it is, they worked things so that I am unnecessarily important because they either thought I'd never leave or they never thought to look into my work. Maybe if someone had taken a moment to look at the manual I wrote and consider from that how much work is involved they would have thought differently. But they didn't.

Boss was really nice about it. She told me I couldn't worry too much about what I'm leaving and how it works out because it isn't my fault and it is out of my hands. She told me she wouldn't let anyone speak badly of me, lay blame on me, or spit on my chair when I'm gone. She knows that I have a certain amount of guilt leaving. I built my position from the bottom up and I worked hard, in part, because I care about the people I worked with and wanted to help them. I hate the idea of leaving my work and possibly causing hiccups. But I also know that things will recover very quickly. For one, if you focus and pay attention, you can do my job. For two, things will always move forward with or without me. I'm not that important and I am not that vital. I've done a damned good job but so will the next person, or else that person will be let go and they'll bring in someone new.

But at least I know that others are finally realizing that I've not been sitting around twiddling my thumbs and waiting for work but, rather, earning every cent of my paycheck every single day. And I've updated my manual and created a supplement so that I'll be a distant thought sooner rather than later.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Life Uprooted

Johan
I'll begin with the pig since he takes up the biggest part of my day lately. He had his follow up today and whilst he seems to be OK, his sutures healed around some crust so there is still an opening and so I have to give him three oral medications and apply an ointment twice a day. We are hoping that the socket will drain and heal up naturally. In the mean time, whilst giving him his medications, I have to keep a hover mother eye on him to make sure there isn't some god awful puss forming, in which case, the vet will have to open it up and close it again. Awesome.

Work
I applied for a job and got it. This job is within my company and will transfer me to our Texas office. The position is something I'm really looking forward to and one that is closer to what I'd like to do (technical writing). The location isn't ideal but then, you can't have everything.

I accepted the job last week and so everyone in my present office knows about it. There was even a "transitional meeting" phone call last week. The tentative date of my transition was March 25, which would allow two weeks notice.

Today it was determined that the transition date has been moved to March 18th due to a pay period issue.

This means I need to fly to Texas this coming Sunday. This also means one week to prepare my non-existent replacement and train them on everything there is to do with my present position, which no one else knows.

I have to pack up, fly to Texas, find a new place, organize movers, and so on and so forth. I am extremely overwhelmed and feel like the biggest of all sissies ever.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Owning Animals: It's stupid

Do you know why I think people own pets? Stupidity. You're a kid and you beg for a pet and your parent(s) eventually cave, maybe because they feel you should learn responsibility, maybe because they had pets at some point. So you get one as a kid and you go through the heartbreak of losing the pet and you cry. Your parents feel bad and replace the pet.

So then you become an adult who has fond memories of owning a cat or dog or hamster or bird or whatever and so you find yourself living alone or with a roommate or partner and you think "you know what I'd like? A pet. I can totally do this."

Fucking stupid. Yes, Johan has brought me great happiness but never again. It isn't even the fuck load of money that I dropped to get his eye removed. It isn't even the oral medications that I have to some how force into his little gob FOUR FUCKING TIMES A DAY.

It's the hovering. I am constantly hovering these days in order to try and monitor if he is eating or not. It's the calls to the vet that I begin with "I know I'm being neurotic but...".

People ask me about him and I say, after a sigh, "I'm not sure. I think he is OK but then, he was in pain and I had no idea. I think he is doing OK but I don't know."

This shit is nerve wracking and fills me with such anxiety that all I can do is wonder how people actually have children. I'm going through all this shit for a guinea pig with a life expectancy of eight years. I can't imagine what my mother went through when I broke my head open when I was two (she thought I lost an eye and then thought I was retarded). How the fuck she made it through that I don't know because she was dealing with a human child and here I am having a lot of trouble dealing with a middle aged pig.

Never again. I just can't do this. And yes, I've already cried in advance thinking about the day he is gone for good. I think I look at him and silently plead for him to be OK so that I get more years with him. But I know I'll be a basket case on the last day. Hell, I cried for hours the day he had surgery.

This shit is stupid.