Wednesday, May 19, 2010

# 2 - Book 10 consecutive days off of work

Can I just tell you something completely random? (clearly I won`t hear a response and I will anyway).

Our keyboard is completely messed up and when I try and type a question mark some French letter é or É comes out. What`s with that? How did I get the question mark, you may ask? I pressed shift and went through all of the numbers on the keyboard and found that shifted 6 is indeed a ? (question mark).

Anyhoo, on to /2. Oh wait it`s happening with the number sign too. Just a sec ... #2. There. Another random thing. I`ll have to ask Wally about it.

#2 was a challenge for me. Not only because at my job you have your own shifts that are yours permanently which you are entirely responsible for finding `coverage`for when you are away, but also because, as I`ve mentioned before, I have a seriously enormous guilt complex.

I have no fears in my job that the world won`t go on without me. I know it will. I`m new and don`t really have an unreasonable amount of responsibility, aside for the regular job stuff. I really probably could go away for a month and wouldn`t be too terribly missed. I have yet to establish strong ties to anyone person supported that are reciprocated, if that makes sense. I just haven`t been there long enough. The people we support are so used to others coming in and out of their lives that they seem quite used to seeing faces come and go.

I`m not sure if the following is my guilt complex honing in or what, but I also feel that since I am a soon-to-be 6 month employee I have no right to already take a vacation. However, after talking to a couple of other employees who have heard my feelings and where I`m at in my head a little, I was encouraged to take the time and breath again. They understood where I was coming from.

I will admit, I find it completely embarrassing that I am already in need of a break considering the length of time I`ve been at this job. I mean I see all of the other female students in school, working tons of hours and they just keep asking for more. I don`t know how they do it!! I`m nearly nutty!

I do try and remind myself of a couple of things: I was working 70 hours a week between school, placement and work right before I started and went into this job without a break. Not to mention the extremely traumatic situation (at least it was for me) that I was a part of last fall at my other job, that I never really got much time to get over - that is if you can `get over`something like that with your heart in tact.

So once I weigh out these facts and finally settle on giving myself earned time off, that creepy little voice that lives somewhere in the back of my mind (however recently I believe has moved to a place up front) pipes up it`s squeaky annoying little voice and says `Oh but if you take time off how are you going to pay for anything to do?`, `You`re not gonna be able to do all those things you wanted to`, `What about your facial or that hot air balloon ride you want to do? You think money grows on trees?`

Rational little bastard. I hate it.

I find it kind of funny how rational we can be when we are in an irrational state. How silly.

That`s when I talk to Wally and he says `I`d rather have a sane wife than an extra paycheck`. And I think `Geez man, why didn`t you tell me that years ago!`. It`s kinda funny because at this point in the conversation that he has almost gotten me to that point where I`m ready to accept a break but I`m wavering a little and he wants me desperately to `seal the deal`. He`s calm and holding my hands gently trying to reassure me that all is fine. But as I go back and forth his grip gets tighter, his blood pressure rises and by the end he`s the one in need of a bypass because he just wants his wife back (and perhaps wouldn`t mind the maid and the cook too). By the time I make the decision to take a break he`s on the floor exhausted.

Poor guy.

Last week when I was working out with Dee and beginning to realize that my mind felt like spaghetti and I really was having difficulty thinking through the most menial things, I knew something had to give.

When I started my job I said to myself (and Wally) that I would just give 6 months of all out work and then I would take it easy. I would take every shift offered, do overnights anywhere, get trained all over and work every evening and every weekend. I was told the more flexible I would be the faster my permanent hours MAY come. Unfortunately I thought the MAY was really a WILL. My bad.

It`s almost five months later and I actually have less permanent shifts than when I started (well we`re balancing around there) and I am strung out. There`s always another new staff ready to take your place as most `flexible`.

I applied for summer hours, this would put me at full time (which I have actually been anyway, it just has a more set schedule and a guarantee of the hours) for a couple of months without worry of scrounging up hours.

I think it was really good that I sent in my request late, because I didn`t get a contract. And though it is a bit of a blow to my ego, I know for sure that this is for the best. I know I`ll get the work I need but more so I know that I can prioritize my time the way I want to now. I could not do that with a commitment of a contract.

I chose to only work 25 hours this week, which has really felt like a holiday, however still not nearly enough to sort out my head (I`m confident heads don`t get fixed in microwave time). I`ve been able to blog a bit, try and think more on want I might want to do this summer with some extra time, focus on goals that I actually want to see come to fruition and others that really aren't worth the fight.

It`s been good.

I feel like I do have more to offer than a 44 hour work week in exchange for a paycheck. I have ideas to share, I have thoughts to express. I want more than a paycheck out of life. I want fulfillment.

Now the hard part ... how to sift through all of the things everyone else wants out of me and find out what I am meant to do.


To have fun doing it.

We`ll see :)


tessa said...

Don't give in to the pressure, work is only one small part of your life, there is so much more. Take it from a middle age woman, there is never enough money, I tell my kids "I came into the world with nothing and I may leave with nothing, but I will have enjoyed life". Do the things you want to do, even if that means using a credit card, life is too short to look back and have regrets!

Stacy said...

So important to take time off work! If you can find a nice balance and take the time to take care of yourself you will be a happier and better person which makes you a happier and better support worker. People will continue to ask you to do more regardless of how much you are currently doing, so do what you're comfortable with!