Cafe Hitch-hike


Clearing out... I can only hope

I'll never forget a time before I left an employer (and before I decided to actually leave), that I felt so grounded down. I was afraid to leave because of the unknown on so many factors. I talked to my mentor (at that time) about it, and he said I reminded him of a battered woman who was afraid to leave a relationship.

I actually said I wasn't going to accept the pending position if it was offered. I was firm, but then I got the offer. I sat quietly, considered it, but my mentor's words really stayed by me. They were the push that helped me step over the threshold. I made that decision and decided to be open, and not look back.

When I started my job at Edgewhere Uni., I remembered feeling a sting of paralysis. I really wasn't given much direction (the position and a lot around me were in flux, and were for quite some time, even after I had left 2 years later). I guess what kept me standing was... people loved me. They just did. They didn't second-guess me, shoot me down, sabatoge, or conveniently withhold information from me. Now the atmosphere resembled a zoo with the way my site grand pubah ran things, but overall, they usually treated me well.

A part of me cries inside when I think of the fear that dwells in me. When I was younger, I had dreams, hopes, and aspirations. I wanted to more, I wanted to see a lot, and I wanted the rewards of accomplishment (both internal and external). Then, I encountered pettiness, nastiness, and mild aggression (I always have the story about the auto executive who got thrown out of a 3rd or 5th story window by his colleagues, I can't remember which level, so that keeps the aggression in perspective). Honestly, it's really wore on me after all these years, especially the part about being largely unprotected by the workplace structures in place (that seemed oh-so eager to blister me in the past).

My current mentor and I have discussions about my career. He's said things to me in the time we've worked together, and the pieces are coming together. I'll also never forget leaving a retreat feeling shaken that I've donned the golden handcuffs of employment in my building.

Maybe when some things are so haunted that it's best to vacate, and then heal away from where something happened. Fuck, that's kind of the story of my and my home of origin. I often wonder. I got this new position, but a part of me wonders when I'm gonna get blindsided, when a big job is going to get dissed over something very insignificant (and of course, everyone's gonna remember that rather than the big task). Can I expect the same treatment for my work that it's gotten these past 5 years? As I look at my work, I shake my head. It wasn't bad work at all, and it was consistently well done. Why the hell was it treated the way it was? It's so hard not to take it personally!

Yesterday, instead of concentrating on some immediate work stuff, I decided to clean out my files and tidy up my desk and drawers. I felt so much grotty energy in my office that I had to move something, so I got rid of a cart full of files and books that I no longer use, or need. I also transferred all my project files to my former supervisor, which was easily done. I've always kept neat files and a naming convention so it wouldn't be hard to figure out what was in there, when it was created, and what version it was if multiple ones were made. My supervisor or whoever the hell takes over my position should have little question about what was done, and it shouldn't take much to figure it out. Lily left a lot of documentation about her job, and that was helpful! It will probably be easier for whoever has to use what I passed along to figure out.

I will say I felt better clearing out shit. Oh, did I! I would had preferred to set the files on fire (hahaha), but that would had been a hazard and uncool to do in the building. I still have a copy of my promotion file from a failed bid in 2010; I think that's definitely gonna burn like I did the first copy when I left Xanadu Tech the first time back in 2003.

I still have a bit clearing out to do. Gawd, do I have a lot of grieving and healing to do thanks to work. Why do people have to be such dicks to each other? I guess everyone just brings their insecurities, issues, anger, and whatever internal grievances to the workplace. In a way, it comforts me to know that people behave just as poorly at work as they can in romantic relationships! Well, no it doesn't...

Clearing out... I just pray that I have the strength in me to resolve what is undone inside, just so I don't carry it with me wherever I go next. I hope I can do this new damn position with less of the stress I had before. I sure hope I can do a damn job and not feel like I have to watch by back. I never dreamed that work could be more adversarial than growing up in a rough neighborhood (yes, it has been at times!). Oh, can I only hope I can bring myself rather than predominately my defenses.

downwind | upstream