And so it begins….


I have had my old employer and their dastardly deeds in my life consistently over the last two days. I received notice in the mail that there are some investigations into the company going on.

I have had anxiety consistently over the last two days. Dizziness, feelings of fainting and the dreaded thumps bumps and skids of my physiology are in full swing.

Picture a carnival setting up. The Ferris Wheel is erected and starts to turn. It is usually the visual clue that a carnival is taking place because it sits so high, spins so slowly and lights up the evening sky. It is like a beacon telling patrons that the fun is just getting started. That is my dizziness or disequilibrium. It is the first thing to show up. It gets the other rides moving. I find it anything but fun.

The next thing to set up is the mini roller coaster. It is unfolded and bolted in. Test runs are conducted and deemed “safe”. It whirs and grinds along. It whizzes around and around. The slow tick tick tick as the cars climb the incline followed by the brief pause at the top before the cars rocket to the bottom, twisting and turning, thumping and skidding around corners before it comes to a slow crawl. That is my heart and its “safe” skips and extra beats. It is the driving force to this carnival and a clear indication that my world is getting ready to be set on its side.

Once the Ferris Wheel and roller coaster are operating the High Striker shows up. This is the midway game that patrons use a hammer to hit a plate sending a puck to the top where a bell is located. *DING!* “WE HAVE A WINNER FOLKS!” This is my blood pressure rising and falling every few minutes. When I stand, as I sit, if I move…I feel the fluctuations with emphasis on the low pressure. Standing too quickly makes my world go spotty and gray. It is also apparently “safe” as I haven’t passed out and fallen down stairs or wrecked my car…yet. “CLOSE but no cigar!” It is called Orthostatic Hypotension and I hate it. It makes movement and life close to impossible. You feel it in the car, walking, sitting or even laying down. It is prevalent with  my anxiety and was dominate when I had panic attacks. It grinds and wears on me throughout the day rendering me nearly useless.

As these symptoms whiz and whirl around me, I have to push forward living my life. Searching for a new job yields extra pressure as I fear I wont be able to control the carnival in a new environment. Suffering from PTSD from my previous employer makes it a difficult when thinking about facing a new job, culture and bosses. The worry over being damaged unemployable goods walks with me daily. My last employer made sure I felt that way each and every moment. Leaving employment hasn’t resolved it. I talked with Senior in great length about it. Another mistake in my attempts to remove their treatment. I assumed that if I let her know how deeply their treatment affected me, she might back off. I had no idea it was a death match because I did my job well. My worst day was better than several of my co-workers best days.

When people collectively conspire to beat you down, you lose a part of yourself. I’ve never had it happen so I have no idea if you ever get your self-worth and confidence back or not. I highly doubt you are ever the same. I feel weakened and I know they take a lot of pride and joy in that fact.

I review my life there and other than the fact that I had (key word there is HAD. They beat any self-confidence out of me) a strong personality. I haven’t any idea what their problem was with me.

I was told once by Senior Director that I scared them because they never knew what I was going to say. They didn’t feel that they could include me in their team because a lot of things were discussed and if I didn’t agree with some of them, I might do something about it.

She was right. If they were to talk about sabotaging an employee, I would say something. When Director made the statement that she didn’t want people with disabilities to work for them because she wanted “good workers” – I would have said something. When they collectively said that hourly workers hold no value other than being warm bodies and were “a dime a dozen” – I would have said something. So yes, your concerns were valid because those things are not acceptable and just because you hold a position of “authority” doesn’t mean you get to say and do those things.

When Senior told me that she didn’t think I would “have their back” – she was right if they were acting in the wrong and there my friends lies the crux of the issue. If you don’t do unethical things – why worry who has your back?

When I said I would have their backs if they were operating for the greater good but would be the first to stand up if they weren’t, that was the final nail in my coffin. Well, that and taking 12 weeks of FMLA for a condition they caused.

So, as we move forward through the process I am clinging to the walls. I don’t want to go. I don’t want to have to deal with it. I hate the chaos and inevitable symbolic blood bath that is about to unfold. I don’t want to have to relive the details of what they did to me. I don’t want others to have to relive their trauma either. It is something I do not look forward to and do not relish because you see, unlike them, I am not someone who relishes on the pain and misfortune of others. I don’t seek to destroy someone because they upset me once five years ago or even two minutes ago. I prefer harmony and peace. I prefer teamwork and helping.

So this path that we are all headed down is totally opposite from my natural inclinations.

In the end, I hope they each learn some valuable life lessons and the company makes changes to prevent those things from happening to another person.

 

Advertisements

Legal Chest Pains


I have been worried about my heart the last few days.

Having PVC & PAC activity is always disturbing but it seems a little different lately. More episodes, stronger extra beats or like this morning, two quick episodes of sharp pain with them.

I am sure I have had pain in the past. A faint memory is lying there but I can’t wrap my full attention around it.

When you have sharp chest pains and you are someone with “health anxiety” (the polite term for hypochondriac) then it sets off all sorts of warning alarms that I have mentioned in past posts.

For those not familiar, it goes a little something like this:

Minding my own business

Pain or dizziness – something out of the norm – could be a twitch or twinge

All systems stop in their tracks while the mind and body “listen” for anything else to happen. If it does, that occurrence is analyzed fully and completely.

Analyzing an occurrence goes like this:

What was THAT?

It was a…..<insert symptom here>

I wonder if that is a problem!

<Insert symptom here>

There it is again!

Okay, it was a sharp pain. It was in the center of my chest.

OH MY GOD ITS A HEART ATTACK

~ Launch all systems GO evaluation~

Blood pressure cuff – on and inflating (please be normal, please be normal….)

PulseOx meter attached (DON’T look at it for 10 seconds because it is always off while it calculates. DON’T LOOK YET)

Blood pressure results – within normal ranges (Thank goodness….)

PulseOx within normal limits (Thank goodness)

Pause……

“I wonder if I did them right.”

Relaunch check of symptoms

Within normal ranges

“Oh thank God! But…what is that pain? I’ll just look it up on the Internet….”

FAIL

As someone with health anxiety (don’t be rude, that is what we are calling it. YOU can be a hypochondriac…I am NOT!) searching the Internet for what ails you is the kiss of….well…..anxiety or panic…we CAN’T say the other word or it provokes nervousness.

If you are not in a full-blown attack then, you will be within a few minutes of clicking and sifting through the best terrorizing medical information the web has to offer.

The thing is? We KNOW this yet…we do it again and again.

I did it this morning after my bout of chest pain. “I can’t go to the doctor so I almost HAVE to rely on the Internet, don’t I?”

Um, no but that doesn’t stop me.

I sit down on the edge of my bed facing the window. This is where I go when I start having anxiety. That SHOULD be my first clue but it never is.

I bring up the search engine. “Tell me what my death sentence is Dr. Google” I almost say as I begin my sifting.

One thing I have learned is to stay away from WebMD as it will ALWAYS tell me absolute death is impending. Paper cut? Can become infected leading to death. Hang nail? Seek emergency medical attention as you may die.

We stay away from WebMD but Mayo Clinic is my golden child of the “What am I dying of today” world.

Mayo Clinic tells me the facts but almost leans toward not telling me enough. They always throw in when to seek medical attention but it doesn’t seem as ominous as WebMd does.

So far it could be spasms in my digestive track, PVC/PAC activity just causing pain or…brace yourself, it could be anxiety.

So, I launch another round of vital checks and determine that if I am going to die today, I need to accomplish something worthwhile.

Instead, I start writing.

What I have learned over the last year of my life is that I have become a VERY anxious person. I was always a Type A personality before but never full of twists and turns like I have now.

My previous employer shares much of the blame of the creation of the mess we all see before our eyes.

Years of being treated poorly and differently than my peers took its toll but nothing like the last and final month of my employment after returning from FMLA. The torment elevated to amazing new heights as they clearly felt the need to retaliate for my absence and then plotted my departure.

I have YEARS of excellent service to that company and needed time off to put Humpty Dumpty back together again because I was torn down from all of your games and demands and you couldn’t get past the time off I needed so you termed me? Makes total sense.

I am being told that my life will be better without my involvement in that company, in that department and certainly in that toxic environment but while I wait for that “bliss” to hit, I am left worrying about medical insurance, life insurance and of course, the almighty dollar to pay my bills when I did everything you asked me to do.

One of the things about the culture I worked in was that they pushed “We will provide you with all of the tools you need to do your job effectively” yet when I reminded them that I don’t have the tools, I was written up. When I didn’t quit as they thought I would, they fired me.

 

As your employee you promised me that you would lead me with all stops removed, to the type of manager you wanted me to be. I did as asked, when asked and usually much better than I was asked to do it, and then you let me go?

That just doesn’t seem ethical. Considering the source, that isn’t a shock.

So today I am fighting my way through the worry that the after effects of your poor and tortuous treatment of me have caused permanent damage.

I pray. I hope and I know that God will take care of me but I also hope that I don’t “go” before I have something important to leave behind. I am not ready and hope God allows me the chance to do something of value for Him, and me.

 

 

 

 

Relapse rinse and repeat


Today was a day from hell.

Reminiscent of a few months ago. The room spinning, becoming light headed on a whim. Weak, wobbly.

I went back to work at the end of last week. Within 3 days, I was having super symptoms.

Today they are wanting to take over.

I’ve got regular commitments that I have to meet and to do it, takes an entire day of preparing myself to spend that little bit of time, doing what I’m supposed to do.

I choke back the fear that wells and I try to mask the dizziness by moving when I feel it is safe.

I sent an email asking for assistance in the department I am in and those are not generally received well on a good day. Add my three whole days in to it and I’m sure I’m facing a firing squad tomorrow.

That worry doesn’t calm my issues.

I think FMLA should be based on your length of employment. I feel that after X amount if years, you should get a year if you need it.

I’m sorry but my current employer is partially, if not fully responsible for me being wrecked. I would think that taking a year to try to piece me back together wouldn’t be too much to ask….

I want to beat this. I want more than anything – to walk into my place of employment and feel like I can do it, inside and out.

Outwardly, I’m sure I seem fine. Inside, it’s the most excruciating thing!

So painful, all of the damned time!!

Like I’ve said, when I can be productive, I accomplish a TON of things, so much that it looks like I’m fully productive. The problem is; those productive times are maybe once or twice a week. 2 or 3 total hours of being able to complete tasks in a week, doesn’t make a great future!

So this afternoon I am trying to cope and get ready for whatever my day brings tomorrow.

My company always enjoys a great ambush so, I’m sure there will be one of those on the books. My email and all…

On the up side, I have an unruly right hand person and honestly, I think it’s just all of the changes that have gone on. I’m not mad about their actions. I’m not pleased but for once, I’m not upset by the things they’ve done in a short time. I view it as a hiccup that can be corrected. That’s a new one. In the past I would have insisted on an immediate chat and made sure the boundaries were laid out clearly.

I think that still needs to be done but not then. The situation was fresh and talking about it right away would have only aggravated the situation. I said little and left it alone.

We will revisit it but in a teaching – team work method rather than a correction.

Everyone makes mistakes and even though their first impression was terrible, that doesn’t mean they can’t do their jobs or won’t do things differently next time.

That’s a change in approach.

So, I guess I’ll see what happens tomorrow.

God Grants


Things are chaotic today and my adrenaline is freely flowing.

I asked therapist once what the difference between anxiety and panic was. I didn’t get a response because we got off topic so I think I will ask again.

My anxiety is creeping up. It is time to be released and I know I am not ready but I have to try. I have difficulty in my own home let alone a place I have to be for 8 hours at a stretch.

My fear is that I will fail in an epic manner. My fear is that I wont ever be that highly productive person I used to be without terrible consequences like anxiety attacks and unexplained physical difficulties.

I spent some time again today wondering where that confidence went. Man, I knew what I was doing and motivation was not an issue. Fear happened but I walked through it and spit on the way by. I never let it see me sweat.

Now, if I even THINK there is a chance of fear, I develop anxiety and refuse to engage. If I think there is negative responses or consequences, I avoid it. I refuse to look fear in the eye because its stronger than me and might kick sand in my face.

Ridiculous I know but very cemented in who I am.

What I have noticed without a doubt at this point is that my body/mind cannot handle too much of anything. I have mentioned it before. I cant take anything more than a flat-line of ANY type of activity or emotion.

I was excited about something yesterday. Not over the top, jump up and down and clap my hands excited but just super hopeful and I paid the price.

So, I wonder if there is more lessons I am supposed to be absorbing.

My life prior to all of this was not one of extreme emotion unless I was angry about something. I still have moments of anger but I don’t allow them to creep too high because that adrenaline dump is very excessive and overwhelming.

However, I also have to keep myself in line when sad or happy. The consequences are not as severe but the same symptoms appear in a lesser volume or intensity.

Before all of this, I would have joy. I do not have joy any longer. I have moments where I am less anxious. THAT has replaced my joy.

I would have moments of peace. I do not have peace any longer. I have moments where I am less anxious. THAT has replaced my peace.

So I wonder.

God helped me resolve panic. I WAS inundated all day every day previously and then was shown my way out. I have a respect for those that suffer from panic and feel for them. It wasn’t that long ago that I was chained down.

Now, I have an equal match with anxiety. I cant figure it out and I don’t understand it. It has no rhyme or reason, just like my panic didn’t. But, it hangs on for dear life. Just like my panic did.

I wonder if God isn’t trying to teach me control. I do believe my lesson last year was in humility and this year it is humanity. Perhaps control because I was impulsive. I like thinks to be resolved NOW. Good or bad, I like them to be settled as soon as possible so I can move on.

Life isn’t about me and my comfort OR wants. I do know that…now..

Perhaps learning how to control the impulse to make decisions (it was a 50/50 split as to how good or bad they turned out) that are based on time and space rather than speed or resolution.

I have said this entire time that my hope is that I am on a path that serves God. I refuse to believe that a soul goes through this much torment with no benefit to mankind. Those that want to serve probably need to learn what the trenches look like in order to keep them empty.

It is miserable but, I have to keep trying to push forward. My worry is that I am headed back and there are days I cant push. I am weak and don’t have it in me. Days that I feel like my body has a mind of its own and I am just along for the ride. There are days I feel as though I could faint or collapse any given second so I retire for a while where I feel a little better but still inundated with negative emotions and symptoms.

I worry that those days will come because I just had one and I am not at work yet.

This stuff is so hard to navigate. It is like I am just well enough to be considered right on that boarder of well, but not nearly well enough to be considered a resident.I guess that would make me a tourist!

Therapist suggests that this awkward balance is why I fall through so many cracks. Not sick enough to end up in treatment and not well enough not to.

Where does that leave me and others like me?

Sitting in the same boat circling the harbor between crazy and sane with no real help out there I guess.

If only FMLA were 24 weeks….12 weeks has been beneficial but I truly think I am a year or so away from being able to walk forward on a regular basis. Why?

Because I poured everything into my work for years and left nothing for myself. Stupid thing to do and I am getting ready to enter the life that expects it, once again.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change! Courage to change the things I can and man, I sure need some focus on the wisdom to know the difference.

Spouse says “Dont sweat the small stuff” which is great advice unless you are a Type A+++ personality learning to be just an A at the moment.

Through these 12 weeks I have learned a few things about me.

I am a control freak. If people that knew me read that they would outwardly laugh in my face. I never believed it to be true but when I am able to do my laundry, I am super particular as to how it is folded, hung or stored.

I am the center of the universe. It is possible that many of us that have blogs suffer from this same issue.

If you don’t call me back its some issue with me. It would never enter my mind that it is because you are out of town. Oh, it may fly through but it wont land. If you scowl as you walk by, its because you have an attitude about me. It couldn’t be because you forgot something on your desk. that isn’t possible because I am not on your desk!

I always think it has some negative thing to do with me.

The thing is, I cant figure out why I allowed that to take root. I believe it is partially the environment I work in because you never know when that shoe is going to drop. They love a good ambush and they will lay low for weeks before you are blindsided over the smallest or largest issue. 

They do this because they want to get their ducks in a row but they also do it so you have no warning. They want you defenseless so it is an easy attack and then it is over. I know because I have seen it done on employees. I hate it. 

This environment isn’t a great one and I do believe it directly contributed to my fall. I worry it will happen again and this time there wont be any question as to which island I am circling.

So, I am bracing myself for a siege of emotion deep from within.

In the meantime, this was a lot of excitement so I am going to retire.

I pray for resolution and I pray for each and every person that has to walk this path, or one just like it. It sucks.

 

Just keep going


How many times have we wished we had a magic ball? If we could only see the future or go back and fix mistakes or alter a path we took….

When I have days that my symptoms are taking over the place, like today, I wish there were a way to go back in time and alter the path that led me here. If I can even find it.

I would slow down or choose another avenue for work, home or hobbies.

Symptoms make life so much more difficult. Keeping appointments takes every ounce of courage and ability you can muster which can leave you depleted for the day.

I was told to force myself to keep commitments because it is one step away from being a hermit if you don’t. So, I kept commitments, “white knuckling” it the entire time. I think the doc was hoping that by doing so, I would be pulled back into an active role in my life.

The experiment hasn’t been successful so far. I just seem to keep spinning in circles unable to get out of the messed up groove and back to the highway of productivity.

It is SO strange to be in this place. This non-living, non-advancing place. It isn’t something we see for ourselves and when it happens, we are sidelined wondering how to fix it.

I fix things. It is what I have done as long as I can remember. This is different. It just isn’t anything I seem to be able to fix. I keep trying….I keep going….its all I can do while trying to keep the hope alive that one day I will step back into my life and use this as a way to help someone else.

HELP! It Got Me!


Panic and anxiety reared its ugly head. It started Friday. I’ve been doing well. Moving more at work, exercising a bit, venturing out. Then came Friday. I met with Therapist. I was cold or rattled during the session. I do not know which. We were discussing my step-son. That’s always a hot button. She gave me some helpful tips and suggested based on my descriptions, he may suffer from.aspergers. I read some information and signs later. He sure could be a poster child. Anyway, we ended agreeing to visit in a few weeks as we both felt I didn’t need weekly sessions. It had been a month since our last and I was doing very well. I left there and went to whole foods. Spent more than I planned or should have. Got ready to leave, found something else, got in line and waited. I was reading a gum label. Went to pick it up and had a short run of extra beats. It stunned me and I instinctively put my fingers on my neck to determine if it was truly extra beats or stomach grumbling because those with irregular beats do have dual issues. I’ll just say it…Gas can cause PVC/PAC beats. Any kind of gas. You feel a flutter then feel bubbles moving around or the other way around. It’s actually very reassuring if Youve been told your healthy and the ectopics are harmless. Anyway, I must have been there a few seconds because when I snapped out of it a clerk next to me was directing me to a clerk behind me. The customer she was with was also looking. I was a bit dazed. Then, afraid. I reasoned myself all the way home. Dizziness set in. Which, as we recall from earlier posts is a symptom of anxiety/panic for me. I got home and put things away, of course ran my blood pressure and listened to my heart rate. I had gotten so much better I lent out my pulse ox machine for a.few days. I was silently cursing this decision. So, I couldn’t check that stat, but seemed to be fine. I continued to have dizziness while I cooked dinner, but did it. My spouse came home as the symptoms had begun to subside. Yesterday at work I had a dizzy moment or two. Waves really. My dizziness isn’t typically room spinning rather wavy blips. I got home, had ice cream and a few mini kitkat bars – remember, I haven’t been eating processed sugar really… Last night at bed, I started having waves of panic and anxiety until I finally fell asleep. This morning I woke up and appeared to be doing well. Relieved, I suggested we go to breakfast. A few waves but I’ve decided it may be neck tension acting up again. We get about 5 miles from home and the waves become more noticeable. I fear them, panic and anxiety set in and we are no where near our destination. I’m worried about passing out. We get to our location, get seated and I’m all but in a full blown attack. For those that don’t suffer from these terrible things its a little something like this: Everything feels like a 3D movie. You’re seeing it, but not really a part of it. The noise is maddening but you really can’t make out anything specific. Your mind is on overload thinking about how you’re not breathing right, you feel dizzy, almost faint but why…you begin running down the possible reasons as you sit and try to focus. Everything close up is more blurry than usual. You’re trying to read a menu but now evaluating the blur, mind you, you’re still running checks and balances on feeling dizzy, hearing chaos and activity around you while fighting heart and soul to appear fine….. But you’re not fine. Your spouse is talking and you’re doing your damnedest to interact but only offer nods, grunts or yes/no responses. (It’s all you’ve got. Your mind is busy analyzing two or three other things attempting to determine if you’re in life/death danger or in anxiety/panic, and if so…what caused it and how to cure it) You feel guilt stricken because you’ve had to talk with your spouse about being in the edge of a full blown epic melt down. The waitress wants your order but now You’ve gone from hungry to nauseous. You have to eat, you choose the least offensive. Oatmeal. As you wait for your order to arrive, your spouse tries to keep conversation moving to take your mind off of the world and thoughts and emotions swirling in and around you. Your food comes and you eat what your body will allow, which is very little. You’re fine with it. Your guilt wells and you wonder your spouse will get sick of it all and leave you for something you just cannot help. You quietly think “I wouldn’t blame you if you did…but….please….please don’t…” It’s freezing in here, which makes it all worse. I cannot tolerate being cold very well. Your spouse sees your duress and offers to pay for everything and take you home. You lurch inside. You would LOVE to do that! But guilt keeps you seated. You just can’t do that to them. Your mind wanders to the possibility and its then, you realize, “I think I’m okay, I’m just in panic and anxiety.” It doesn’t cause it to cease, but it does cause it to quiet down a little. The deafening roar of the other diners quiets down, the visuals going on around you make more sense, the blurry vision becomes a touch more clear, your breathing is less of a struggle and your spouse is having a larger response from you. But the guilt…humiliation…. It stays. We eeked through a few errands by agreeing that I will go here…and then decide if we need to go home. I’m okay so…I’ll go here….then decide. I sat in the car for most, but at least my spouse was able to accomplish what they wanted to and I had time in the car, in the sun to pray and try to find some centering. We get home and everything feels a bit better. The dizziness is there but absent is the terror and fear of suddenly passing out along with images of EMS rushing in. I’m able to rationalize that I have been laying in a positon for the better part of two weeks that hyper extends my chin toward my chest. I relax in the bath this way, I’ve laid in bed many times this way, all the while knowing that previously, this position caused cheek and jaw numbness along with dizziness. The exact symptoms that have me reeling. I further recognize that I carry tension in my neck and shoulders. If Youve read previous posts, you know my job drives me to the brink on a daily basis. My tension is crazy. I clench my jaw and suffer from symptoms of TMJ. This is a fact. TMJ has dizziness as a common symptom. On top of all of that, I haven’t been drinking as much water, ate sugar, haven’t been getting as much sleep as I need, sit on this silly phone in a poor posture and SWEAR I do/don’t do all of this innocently. It’s a tornado of events that single handedly could provoke the issues I have had since Friday. Yet, to a panic/anxiety sufferer, it ALWAYS means demise. Always. So, what to do? Well, I took 3 ibuprofen, I’m hopefully sitting back in a more neck friendly position, though it likely isn’t. I will get off of this phone and stop looking down. I am considering ice on my neck but truly detest being cold. It provokes an odd form of anxiety for me. I will CONSIDER a massage but, the last one caused a pinch nerve that forced me to deal with the very facial/arm numbness I fret about right now. I’m fearful it will aggravate the condition. I ponder a chiropractor for a minute. I just don’t know what’s best…. Most importantly, I’ll continue to pray for guidance and relief, along with the world, people I know, and don’t. So for now, my panic is gone and “all” that remains is the anxiety of guilt, fear of panics return and worry over which method will alleviate my numbness and waves of dizziness. For those that read this and know EXACTLY what I’m writing about…hang in there. We have to support each other and do things when we are able while not beat ourselves up when we just can’t. The sun will come up tomorrow and maybe THAT is the day we walk away from this forever!

Dont poke a stick at it


So I begin today. I wake slowly a few times through the morning. Today is a day I am able to sleep in and I absolutely do not want to wake up at my regular time. I drift in and out enjoying the quiet and sighing to the fact that I am actually able to stay in bed.

Reality starts to fade in and I wish it would stay asleep too. Flashes of the day before start to intrude on my bliss and before you know it, the last 45 minutes of what could be quiet, calming sleep, are assaulted by blips of discussions, incidents, fears and fretting. Now, I, am, awake.

My spouse was upset yesterday because the new job is difficult. The supervisors pulled my spouse in to the office and had a 30 day review. As a manager myself I think, ut oh, as soon as I hear the news. My spouse starts to, with great stress, relay the meeting.

Not so good news. They like you…but. There it is. The lurching but.

Now, the fact that I am in the midst of a back slide in my own deal-eo, does not make listening to this any easier. I am trying to focus on what is being said as numbness drifts to my left arm and face. I start to panic a little but try very hard to hide it and remain neutral. My spouse is now crying stating that they feel like a failure as I fight to remain in the here and now, and not concentrate on my impending sudden death.

I try to comfort my spouse because after all, there are real issues there too. My spouse has suffered from anxiety and depression for years. Disability was the only source of support until my spouse didn’t send the paperwork for the review back and was dropped off. I was furious when I found out.

My spouse doesn’t do well at work. Never has and we have been together 14 years. I hear about all of this success pre-melt down and am amazed its possible. People skills, great unless you are someone my spouse does not care for and then its all over. Forever.

So as my spouse is talking about having trouble seeing the forms and completing the work, I flash to a month from now and realize, my spouse is going to be fired.

I am angry yet understanding. It is a weird mix. You want to be compassionate but by the same token, you want to freak out. Computers have never been a strong skill for my spouse and this job requires some basic computer skills. Eyesight is an issue and macular degeneration runs on the paternal side of the family so, I worry this is something coming along as well.

Now, before I continue, let me just make this statement. I am truly a kind hearted person who loves my family. I am giving and believe in a world with Good and God. There are things in this world and life that sometimes people just cannot help.

Having said that….

I am frustrated. I see a near future where I am the only income. Again. Now we are worrying about the limited vision so that means no driving for my spouse. So, I am now the only income and the only form of transportation that my spouse will have. What about doctor appointments, the grocery store, outings and other things? It is a lot to fret about.

For better or for worse. I embrace that. I do. But it doesn’t keep me from being fearful that I am not in a position at this time in my life to handle the for worse part, because right now, I am in the midst of my for worse and I want to get away from ME!

Lets also ponder for a moment, other posts where I have relayed conversations where my spouse has been just short of a jackass with my for worse part. I am sure it is unintentional but jackass is jackass, even if it is by mistake.

Dont get me wrong, I am not divorcing my spouse because of a job loss or loss of vision. That is crazy talk. I am ranting that in the midst of the worst now 7 months of my life, I don’t know if I can cope with big drama on the other side right now. I am fearful that a job loss or devastating news about my spouse will seal my fate and I will be forever loony.

The same can be said for my prison of a job.

I had a phone interview yesterday with another company. I will have a face to face interview at the end of the month for a job that pays almost 16k less a year but has a rep for a great place to work, great benefits and would actually have me OFF on the weekends. I would also not work later than 6p. However, 16k less a year when the spouse is likely going to be unemployed before the first snowfall…..I may be chained to my current hell for a longer period. Of course, that’s unless they get rid of me first. I am sure with every review and every increase they think they could get someone cheaper and that hasn’t lost heart. Because frankly, they have stabbed me in mine so often, I really have nothing left.

I wonder, if I left, will they care? Will they know I am leaving because of how I have been treated all of these years? Will it matter? Likely not.

The Director has been normal lately. Pleasant really. My boss has been absent for several weeks. Not from work, just from my work. It has been nice as I was ready to pop with a weekly or bi-weekly visit to drop in and say the same things. Now if visits happen, I am sure it is when I am gone.

I think about losing that job and wonder if I will care. I wonder if it will actually send me over the edge. It may or it may actually bring me back from the brink. It is such a hostile environment that it amazes me that the people in the ivory offices are really SO out of touch that they don’t see it.

Then I wonder, should I just leave a sue them? Should I sue them for $1 just because I need to make a statement about how terrible they treat people? How they have turned me in to this absolute shell of who I used to be or could have been?

I am irritated that they treat people the way they do and think it is okay.

They fire some people for ethical lapses that yes, should have been fired, no mistake about it. Then I wonder if they are evaluating WHY these people, after SO many years are making these terrible decisions?

Do they understand that beating people down day after day, having as many changes as our company has had over the last few years, demanding more more more with no understanding of the burn out it causes, do they think just MAYBE some of this may be why people with 8 or 10 years of tenor are taking a path they have never taken before?

I have been there 8 and I have been beaten to DEATH by them but no, I would never steal. I wouldn’t do the things that others have done but I also couldn’t care less about them. I care about my employees and their well-being but as far as the oppressors go, it wouldn’t phase me if they left and never came back. It wouldn’t upset me if I made a job transition to another company for the same income. I would fill by box and book it out the door yelling “SEE YA!” on the way out.

So with all of this going on, it is no wonder my anxiety and panic are back to manifesting themselves in worry over my health. That is how I express my fret. Health anxiety. I highly recommend staying away from it because it will drain you fast!

So today, I get up, go about my duties that I have to meet and then return home. I gave myself a haircut. (Do not assume that I went Brittany Spears, I have cut my hair for years and never chose to go bald but thank you for your concern)

I showered and came in my room. My goal for the day has been to NOT lay down but stay seated or moving. I decided I was having anxiety so I am writing instead of obsessively checking my blood pressure and pulse ox. It is like an addiction. If I want to get out of the habit, I have to stop doing it.

Besides, I am functioning. I am tired and want to nap but should go in to work. I don’t want to and am considering just starting my new-found resolve to stay busy, tomorrow.

When you are functioning okay, limited dizziness, some “unreal” feelings but over all, functioning, it is silly to take a blood pressure and risk undoing what is functioning. I WANT to take my bp, but then I think about last week when I did and how I took an okay week and turned my life back into constant panic and worry.

If you are functioning, don’t poke a stick at it. Continue to function until you can’t. Then, poke the stick because you’re already down, whats more going to do?!

So, as I finish my ramble, I have glimpses of hope that I can be productive and get my homework done today. Of course it would involve actually DOING the homework for which at this second, I am too tired to do. I think I will see if I can take a nap. If not, homework and maybe work it is.

For the rest of you who have the affliction that I do, I pray that you find peace and calm. Even if it’s just for a few hours. I am praying that your hours lead to days, to weeks, to months and to years.

This world is in shambles and life is not easy. With prayer and luck, maybe, just maybe we can get back to normal. We can feel good. We can experience true joy and happiness.

Those are my prayers for you. And me.