Depressed

Haven’t worked again today.

The depression really slammed me yesterday. Just suddenly I was FECKING DEPRESSED.

Is it the codeine pill I took Tuesday night? Is it just PMS? Is it due to the forbidden foods I’ve been reintroducing in order to get the stupid blood test for my allergist? Is it because I’m panicked again over my ability as a professional astrologer? Is it all of the above?

I also started getting george pain pretty strongly at 12:02pm yesterday but he never did show up. The depression worsened throughout the day as the pain stayed constant yet just enough to be annoying. On a whim, I bought tickets to see Siouxsie live at the Fillmore, even though I don’t have the money for such things. This of course made the depression worse.
At the last minute, I got off my ass, threw on a dress, did my hair and makeup, and went out the door.
On the way across the Bay Bridge, I had to fight the very strong urge to pull over, get out of my car and dive off the bridge. My brain was SO broken that when I argued against such plans, my brain came back soothingly with, “Oh it won’t hurt, do you ever hear of people killing themselves by jumping off this bridge? NO. It’s always the Golden Gate bridge. You’ll be fine. You can just go for a swim. It’ll be nice.”

Of course I didn’t listen, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this. :p

But the urge was compelling. Very strong. WTF.

I didn’t get to San Francisco in time to meet my friends for dinner, so I went without. No big deal, I’ve not been hungry lately, anyway – just craving chocolate and sugar mainly. My friends met me outside of the parking structure and we walked to the Fillmore. When we got there, Rasputina was playing. I’d never seen them before. I had instant cello lust. I played cello in 4th and 5th grade. The only reason I stopped was because we had to move to a new school for 6th grade, and they didn’t have a strings department, only a band department. Thus ended my career as a cellist – my mother was too poor to *buy* me a cello of my own, let alone pay for lessons.

Siouxsie was great. I enjoyed seeing her and yowza, does she still got it. Catcalls galore, all night, from every inch of the gender spectrum, for our beloved Auntie Siouxsie.

When the show got out, my friends and I parted ways. I was in such pain from standing and craning my neck and dancing that I needed to take an Ibuprofen600 on the way home. I felt better emotionally and physically when I got home.
Woke up this morning from the dream I posted about in the last entry and well, spent the rest of the day today in a depressed funk all over again.

I will say though that I did spend a lot of time outside today. I sat in the backyard and took pictures. I even took my cat out there on her harness but all she did was meow and howl because she was afraid. Her tail was all bushed out, too.
My friend came over later and we talked out in the backyard in the sun.

Here’s some pix I took of the backyard today:

img_5545.jpg

img_5546.jpg

img_5547.jpg
img_5548.jpg
“The sun is up, the sky
is blue, it’s beautiful,
and so are you…”

img_5552.jpg
img_5553.jpg

img_5555.jpg

img_5557.jpg
img_5559.jpg

img_5560.jpg

img_5561.jpg
img_5563.jpg

img_5564.jpg

After my friend took off for work, I went and retrieved my car – it was parked a couple of blocks away – and I went and got a mini pizza to further test the reintroduction of foods. I SWEAR TO {INSERT DEITY HERE} I DIDN’T EXPERIENCE ANY DOOM.

I’m absolutely fecking baffled by this. I swear, I have been severely ill in the past from eating pizza dough or a dinner roll or anything with wheat and yeast in it, especially the yeast. So I have no idea what the deal is. I’ve probably been consuming yeast in some form or another and got my gut reacclimated to it, I guess. Would sugars do that alone? I wonder.

This would explain the weight gain over the past 2 years. Time to cut everything out again – this time for the purpose of weight management!

And now I feel better that I’ve emptied my head. My man is on his way home from work, so that helps, too. Tomorrow is a new day. I will do what I can tomorrow, knowing that this is downtime, be it emotional (depression, stress, anxiety, PMS, etc) or physical (the endometriosis), it does not matter. I’m in downtime. And I need to take care of myself. And the work will have to wait, and I will just have to TRUST myself that everything will happen as it should, in its time.

*sigh*

It’s just convincing my man that this is all good. That’s going to be the problem as we approach May of this year, when the state financial assistance runs out.

*sigh again*

But right now…. RIGHT NOW… I take care of myself in my downtime.

Update on complaint to the labor board

This morning I finally got a call from the Labor Board – the company that fired me finally responded to their charges of “denied accomodation”, and they’re fighting it! OMG, WTF.

Can’t say I didn’t expect this, though. The Labor Board guy asked me a bunch of questions surrounding my absenses, and said he’ll continue to review all the chat logs, doctor’s notes and emails I sent proving my case that I informed them of day one that I have a stage III incurable illness which does keep me from work between 1-3 days each month and therefore violates their stupid-ass attendance policy.

Good. You go right ahead and fight. Have fun with that. But I’m going to win.

Dream

Well I guess it’s still happening, and will continue to happen each time I have to go through the job interview process….

This morning I dreamt that I was returning back to work in a corporate environment, and when I got to work and sat down at my desk, people were looking at me funny. I had the sense in my dream that I’d just come back from another round of Endometriosis pain, coupled with the flu.

The workplace was a large open floor filled with desks with no cubicle walls to separate people and teams from one another. Just one large open room filled with corporate drones. Many were in suits or business casual wear. As soon as I sat down at my desk and powered up the computer to start working, the Human Resources (HR) person came over to talk to me. My heart dropped when I saw her and immediately I was on edge. She told me she really needed to speak to me, now. I copped an attitude immediately and told her that I have a medically documented condition and she can’t fire me for it. She told me to get up and come with her.
I stood up and talked loudly, telling her within earshot of everyone around me that I do a great job there, and that the medical condition I have is thoroughly documented, that she has letters from my doctors, that I’ve done nothing wrong, and that I can sue if they fire me for being absent when I had called in and followed procedure.

I was escorted by HR and a couple managers “calmly and without incident” as they say, but I was upset. As we walked towards the HR office, I just didn’t want to hear the rejection. I just didn’t want to deal with rejections anymore. I’m a good person. I care about my work. I do a great job. Why can’t you bastards just allow me to take the 2-3 days off that I need every month because I really am bedridden from the pain of an incurable illness?
WHY?

So I ran. I ran away from them. Suddenly the corporate office turned into a warehouse and I was on the ground level, running towards a back entrance out of one of the big loading dock garage type doors. It was light outside but sort of hazy, like you get in the mornings in the winter.
They ran after me and kept calling for me to stop. At some point I did stop and just stood against a wall, waiting for them to catch up to me. By this time, there were more managers and clearly I’d caused a commotion. I had a circle of people huddled around me and I was backed against the wall.
The HR person read to me why I was being fired and yes, it was because of my monthly absenses related to my health condition, but they felt they were completely in the right for what they were doing. I felt like I was having my Miranda Rights read to me, I swear.
My belongings from my desk were handed to me and I walked out of the building, into the hazy morning light.

When I woke up, I had the daycare agency on my mind. I was really pissed off all over again at having been rejected. And I’m pissed off that the company that fired me back in October has caused these recurring nightmares every time I have to talk to another company about potential employment. If this isn’t a form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), I don’t know what is!

When I got out of bed and went over to the computer, I saw that I’m not the only one who’s still thinking about what the daycare agency did to me – I got a note from Mel on my journal entry about the agency rejection, and replied to her before taking my car into the shop (more on that in another post). Thanks again Mel for your caring thoughts!

Two days after the agency rejection, I got a letter from the Labor Board about the other job that fired me, letting me know my case has been assigned. I thought it was ALREADY assigned but no, it was just HANDED OFF until now. Now it’s assigned, and I was asked to send more evidence if I have it. I’ve just been in a depressed funk and barely able to do much – the depression worsening now that I think about it when the fecking daycare agency rejected me five days ago.

So right now I’ll go send off the additional evidence (emails and chat logs) to the dude my case is assigned to at the Labor Board, and I’ll mention what the daycare agency did as well.

And after that, I’ll need a shower and a clearing/grounding ritual to clear away the anger and bitterness. Today I’m meeting with a friend so we can discuss our “Unemployable and Unreasonable” goals to keep each other motivated towards our respective self-employment paths.

Unemployable and Unreasonable

After all that work, today I was rejected for the friggin daycare job of all things.

I just went back through my journal and realised I never gave detail as to this ChildCare job.
So here we go…

Back in December, a ChildCare agency called me and said they’d found my resume on the unemployment office job board online. They wanted to interview me. I went in on December 11th and to my surprise, they accepted my college transcripts! I haven’t had a daycare do that for me in all the years I’ve lived in California – they always tell me I need California schooling to be a teacher of any sort. So I was excited that if in fact I do have to go back to working FOR someone, I’d much rather go back into my field of study rather than back to the dotcom industry or any office job for that matter.

It took the rest of the month to get seen by my local doctor and get paperwork filled out to prove that I’ve had a physical, a TB test and am in overall good health.
The caveat I ranted about a few days ago was the $125 the agency wanted me to spend on fingerprinting myself and sending the data to the department of social services. They say they don’t do that for me cuz they’re an agency.

I relented and went in armed with my paperwork and checkbook – the followup appointment for the agency was today.

There’s a new recruiter now, and the office manager was there, too. They took one look at my paperwork, and were instantly dissatisfied. I explained that one doctor’s report was from my surgeon and educated them about endometriosis. They said they’d ask their division manager to approve this restriction. They then asked me about why I can’t lift up to 60lbs. I explained the other doctor’s report, which shows a limit of lifting less than 60lbs, is because of a back injury from a car accident, but the restriction is quite flexible. I explained that I’m not working in a warehouse or factory, and that working with children is quite different, and will not be a problem.
Nope! Sorry! Not having it. The new recruiter sat there and lectured me, repeating the restriction to me FOUR TIMES. I told her it’s nothing, I can remove the restriction or have my doctor write up a new report. She declined this offer on my part, and told me the doctor has spoken and they will abide by this and that because the restriction is in direct conflict with the base requirement of the job, that is, being able to lift up to a 60lb child, they may likely not be able to accomodate me.
The woman invited that if I have any friends who might be interested, to have them apply. I asked her to tell me if she was disqualifying me outright, or if I should wait til she hears back from her division manager. She told me to wait til she hears back, but then shook my hand and thanked me for my time.

My time! What a waste of it! And what unbelieveable bastards! Turned down for CHILD CARE because of something so petty!!!

My first reaction was to call the labor board on these assholes, too. But y’know, it’s not worth it for me. It’s just not. This is a blessing. Things happen for a reason. I’m not supposed to go back to daycare work. I have to keep moving forward with my astrology business and not kowtow to fear of having my government check ripped away from me. Courage, mom.

The thing that kinda sucks is that I was SO sure I had this daycare job, that yesterday I told the company my friend works for that I am no longer interested in that job. This is the office job and I don’t want to go back to office work. I was warned in my own astrology forecast about being too stubborn or egotistical or proud to accept work. The warning said that I will have financial hardship. But y’know, I have Saturn in the 2nd House, which denotes a lifetime of financial hardship. What’s new?

So I’m rapidly approaching unemployable, it seems. And that’s okay. I knew since October that it could be April 2008 before I’m employed again full time – thanks to Susan Miller, who I’m a fan of. In the meantime, I’ve been going to The Business of Metaphysics meetings at the local tea house once a month, and the instructors there teach us how to be Unreasonable – that is – to accept nothing less than what we want to do with our lives, and not to bow to our fears of the ‘rational’ 9-5 office job. They tell us to declare boldly that we are Unemployable and Unreasonable! We are unreasonable because we refuse to give in to the fact that everyone must work themselves to death with the 9-5 office job or the labor job, working for other people, when we can be in business for ourselves, and help people with the metaphysical gifts that we have. The group is ever-changing and always supportive. People keep in touch and give encouragement of the others in the group. I’ve met physical therapists, mediums, numerologists, authors and dream walkers through this business group.

You have to fight for what you want. I am fighting against the monopolistic capitalist / globalisation work ethic to succeed at the work that *I* want to provide to the world.

health and job updates

Had splodeyness again this morning but went ahead and made myself the Budwig breakfast anyway. I held it down and had no pain. Yay!

Went to the doctor for my annual physical. Spilled my details to yet another doctor and made my demands to see an endocrinologist. This doctor listened to everything I had to say, then said that endocrinology is the wrong path for now, and will refer me to immunology instead. YAY! A REFERRAL! Woohoo!! I have an appointment on Monday.
And the doctor had me go for blood draw for thyroid, liver and one other related thing I now forget cuz well I’m good at forgetting. But it was important and I’ll find out in a few days. If I get a letter, everything’s kosher. If I get a phone call, it ain’t kosher.

Regarding the flu, the doctor refused to give me antiviral drugs and said if I’m not better in 3 days to go get more tests done cuz she thinks it could be some bacterial infection that the antibiotics didn’t flush out in December. oooookay…

I also got my TB test for the daycare job that’s been calling for me. If I have to go back to work, I have to go back to work. I can’t tell this job NO, because they found me on the unemployment resource website, and they’ll report me saying NO to them, and unemployment money will be cut off. So I go.
I’ve been really bad at staying focused day to day on the astrology site anyway, proving once again that I have no self control and need to work FOR someone. Feh.

So I go back to the doctor on Monday and get the TB thing checked, and send back the paperwork to the daycare job, and we’ll see where it goes from there. I’ve been on weekend time since October 13, and now I see Sunday approaching and Monday looming as it were. So yeah, I’m a bit sad. Alas. I keep working on the astrology thing after work. That’s the next test of my self control and willpower.

The rain soaked me through while I was out, despite wearing a raincoat. Got home, changed into dry warm clothes, put a throw and a heating pad on me, and also decided to try having Real Food again. I made a Budwig salad and had no pain after consumption! I was hungry again not long after, so I ate some rice, and no pain afterwards! Yay!!
I’m still pretty tired today but plowing through my self-assigned duties. All that’s left is to work on the astrology site now til my man gets home. I hope he CAN get home tonight – the weather has caused so many road closures it ain’t even funny.

Friday, November 9, 2007: FIRED

Woke up today before my man left for work, and got the day started. I needed to go take care of my friend’s cats, then come home, take a shower, and get to the unemployment office for their mandatory debasing “let’s show you how to look for a job” meeting.

I went outside, got into my car, turned the key in the ignition, and …. nothing.

Panic set in. I waited a few seconds, then tried it again. Nothing. No click, no turning over of the engine, nothing.

My man had already left for work, too.

I called my auto insurance roadside assistance number and explained to them the situation. They radioed a tow truck to give me a jump and if necessary a tow to my mechanic.

Flashing back:
The week I was fired, I’d told my boyfriend that I had a gut feeling that my car was going to break down. I told him my feeling was that it would happen in the next two weeks, which would place the timing between October 10 – October 24. Thankfully no breakdown occurred, but the front left tire has a steady leak that I have to keep filling until I can get off my ass and take the car in to the tire shop. I’ve had other things on my mind so the tire has not taken priority. My man has told me I should get the car into the shop for a tuneup so it doesn’t break down and fulfill my prophecy, but I said “with what money? I have to wait til my first unemployment check unless you want to do it”.
At that point, he should have done it. We talked for months about him assuming financial responsibility when my job would inevitably fire me. He said repeatedly that he had no problems helping out. Well, he didn’t step up.

When I purchased astrology software a couple of weeks ago, I ran a forecast for myself for October/November. I was not shocked when the car thing came up again:

Transit SATURN conjoined natal Mercury
Nov 12 through Nov 30
Daily transportation may be threatened when your car or other vehicles require repairs or need to be replaced.

And again I told my man about this, and again he told me to take the car in, and again I told him unless he was going to pay for it, I couldn’t because I had no money from the state, yet. And he didn’t step up.

That brings us to this morning, when my car broke down, three days ahead of the forecast but I’d already seen it coming with my gut feeling, just wasn’t positive when. I called my man after calling the tow truck and left an angry message about how he needs to step up and take responsibility and don’t wait for me to ask, from now on, it’s HIS car, HIS groceries, HIS health problems, HIS cat maintenance – it’s all HIS and HE must be responsible.

He called me back and gave the equivalent of a kid in trouble with their Ma and told me he understood.

That being dealt with, I called my friend and asked if he could take me to my unemployment appointment if my car required actual work in the shop instead of just a battery. He said he would.
I called my friend who I’m catsitting for and told her I may not be able to get to her cats and why. She had me call her other friends and let them know. I did that as well.

The tow truck arrived after an hour and gave me a jump. I turned off the car after a minute, and tried to restart it.

Dead.

The guy gave me another jump and I called my mechanic. He could see the car today. I drove right over and without any waiting time, he installed a new battery on the spot. Yay! I watched how he did it so that I can do this myself next time.
I used to know how to work on cars, having grown up in The Auto Capital Of The World: Detroit.
But when I moved to California and got a fuel-injected car, I didn’t know how to work on the thing, so I just stopped working on it altogether and took it to the shop or to the dealership whenever I had a problem. So I’ve forgotten everything. I’d love to take classes on auto shop to relearn how to care for my own car.

But I digress.

Once I was back in business with the car, I called my friends back and told them everything was alright – called the standby catsitters back and told them I was on my way over to care for the kitties – they didn’t need to go.

And off I went.

And george swooped in, and lo, he did strike me down. I was halfway to my friend’s house when the pain hit so hard I thought I might die. I got disoriented and therefore lost to a place I know how to get to. At that moment, my man called to check on me. I told him my situation, basically to ask him to be my brains for a minute. He told me to go back home, and that he’d take me over to care for the cats later, that the cats would be okay.

The pain was full on, and now I could feel the squid and the bleeding. Ugh.
I got home, checked the mail, staggered into the house, and took a Darvocet.

I FINALLY got my first check from the unemployment office. <sarcasm>It only took about a month!</sarcasm>

I called the unemployment office and to my surprise, I got through on the first call. I pleaded with them to reschedule my appointment because I was very ill. They said NO, and gave me flashbacks of my former employer. They said if I missed the appointment, I’d be fired cut off – they’d stop payments to me for a week and schedule another phone interview so I could explain myself! Then they’d decide if I could get the week of pay back again! I told them I was fired from my job because of this illness and now they wanted to take my money away???!?!?!
They basically said sorry…yes.

I hung up and cried.

I called my friend back again and asked him again if he could take me to the unemployment office. He said he would, definitely, not a problem at all. I thanked him profusely.

He came and got me and took me to the 12:15pm appointment. I was a wreck by then – disheveled, heating pad on my lap, ashen face, bleary eyes from the medication, clutching my damned forms for the goddamned unemployment office.

I went in and discovered to my benefit that they’d changed policy. No more groups of people in counseling on how to look for a job; now it’s one-on-one, based upon the individual’s current unemployment situation. The lady saw how sick I was and went easy on me. I’d forgotten my Social Security card and so she let me by without it. I’ve already scanned the damned thing anyway and sent it in to the unemployment office, so they have it on record…
She went over the routine on how to use their resources to look for a job, etc etc, and told me that I should also look into state disability to use in conjunction with the unemployment benefits. She said that since I was ‘fired for illness’, I need to mark when I’m too sick for work on my forms. I told her I can still look for work even when sick, I have my laptop in bed. She said yes but I can’t accept a job if one calls on the same day, if I’m sick, and to cover my ass, if the unemployment office finds out, I’d best have the state disability lined up to cover me, otherwise the unemployment office could cut me off for not following the rules.

Ah Christ, people!!!!

So now I look into state disability and see if I’m eligible. I’d looked into this before and my understanding was that I needed to be out nine consecutive days before any benefits would be paid. So I think this lady is full of shit, or doesn’t understand my situation. I’ll have a look again but likely not go with it.

RIGHT. SO.

I got out of the appointment before 12:45pm and my friend dropped me off at home. I staggered into the house and the pain and bleeding ramped up again, so I took another darvocet.

This put me out for the rest of the day. As I was letting the medication take me under, I relaxed my body and begged it to let me out. I seriously just wanted to die.

While I was passed out, the ex-girlfriend of my suicidal friend called and woke me up. I thought it was him so I answered…but it was her. I ended up counselling her for what felt like an hour…and in that time my father and another friend also tried to call.

After I hung up with my friend’s ex, I called my other friend back and left a message, and I called my dad back. He’d wanted to know about the oil spill, but when he heard how horrible I sounded, he asked what was wrong. I told him it was my usual downtime, bedridden from my illness. He softened, sounded worried. He asked if there was anything that could be done. I told him unfortunately no – I’d tried surgery and they couldn’t get all the disease out because it was too close to my bladder and the surgeon didn’t want to puncture my bladder.
I know I’ve told my dad all this before. He just forgets. He’s getting older. I emailed him later and asked if he wanted me to send him any details about my disease so he can understand what’s going on.

I passed out again and my man came home from work by around 6:30pm. I forced myself out of bed and we went to take care of my friend’s cats.

Halfway there, I cried out OH NO STOP!

I’d forgotten the damned keys to her house.

At that point, I told my man I didn’t have the energy to finish the rest of the day. I’d had enough. I’m tired. I just want it all to stop. Please.

He caressed my back and shoulder as he drove. I put my head between my legs and just let my body go limp for awhile as he drove back to our house to get the keys.
Why can’t it just all stop?

My man got the keys and we started off again. We got to our friend’s house and I took care of the cats’ food and water and litter. I puttered about slowly. Then we gave the cats some lovin and brushin and they were all happy and content, and we could go.

Got back home safely. Here I am in bed. Sleeping again soon. Tomorrow is another day. George, that bastard, should be gone and my energy should be back. Tomorrow night there’s a club night going on, and several of my friends want to go.
I can do this. I need to get out. I will be well. I can do this.

Another crazy work dream

Because I had to put together a bunch of paperwork for the Labor Board yesterday (my phone interview is in a week!), which entailed printing out chat logs and emails with management to prove my case to the Labor Board that discrimination had taken place, naturally last night I had a dream/nightmare about the company that fired me.

I was at my desk, trying to get some work done so I could just leave for the day. The director of support looked at me uneasily but I don’t think he said anything. As I was finishing up for the day, I realised suddenly that I’d been fired days ago…but yet I kept coming back to work because they needed me and they knew it, and that’s why people were looking at me uneasily – I just wouldn’t go away¹.
As soon as I had this realisation, I abruptly stopped working and began to clear off my desk. I realised then that I had a lot of my personal stuff at the job², and that I’d need to stay very late after work boxing everything up. Good thing it was already after hours and everyone had gone home. I began to go through the darkened office, looking for boxes and newspaper to wrap my more fragile stuff in. As I was near the front door to the building, someone walking on the sidewalk outside³ glanced in at me furiously going through boxes and newspaper, while everything around me looked to be in a toppled mess. I remember thinking, “Oh crap, she probably thinks I broke in and is now off to call the police.” I hurried to a back room to look for more boxes.
Suddenly, the place turned into my father’s old house in Livonia – the one he grew up in full time, and then my brother and I grew up in, on weekends visiting dad. The place was a mess – boxes and garbage and stuff everywhere.4 As I was packing up my stuff, I began to notice … what the hell? CAT POOP! Giant dog-sized logs and curls of cat poop… everywhere? And my cats scampering about! I’d have to clean that up, too, before I could leave!!! Ugh!
I went to the wetbar and sat down and began packing some of my stuff up. That’s when my friend nateM showed up and sat down on the arm of the small loveseat in the wetbar, to my left. He began talking with me, and then my dad and his girlfriend5 came home. I apologised for the mess, and my dad announced that it was their anniversary, so I had to leave immediately so they could ‘celebrate’. I began scooping up my boxes and paper to exit the house, and then I woke up.

Good times, eh? I always hate having the work-related dreams after I’ve been let go, but alas, it’s what happens every time. I was doing fine with only having had the one dream, til I had to go and dig up all the paperwork for the Labor Board.


¹ This part of the dream happened because I had emailed a coworker asking if they’d be a witness for me to the Labor Board, because they too suffer from a health condition for which they are being harrassed. They wrote back in terrified manner: “I don’t think that I’d be any help regarding being a witness to anything. Remember, we had different schedules, days off and I wasn’t around when anyone from HR or management spoke to you about the absentee situation. To be frank, and I hope you understand, although no one at [the company] has ever given me reason to fear retaliation, I have had jobs where such situations have ended up in a bad way for me. 2 mortgages, a car payment and a heap of bills makes me try my best to fly right under the radar. I’d be happy to be a reference if a new employer calls, but there’s no union at [the company] to fall back on if someone thinks that I’m slinging mud.”
I have a heap of bills, credit card debt, a car insurance payment, and rent, and the company fired me. If I don’t pay my dad back the money I owe, I can make one month of bills before unemployment money sets in. And what if the money is delayed or denied? What if I can’t get another job right away? THAT is the fear. That is what keeps people in the jobs that abuse them, because they are afraid of being kicked out of their homes and cars. I don’t know if this person’s spouse works for a living and can help out financially like my man can help me. I understand The Fear because I’ve had The Fear – why else would I have stayed in so many shitty jobs for so long? But this is ridiculous. It has GOT to stop. People HAVE to get control of their lives and STOP letting money rule them and drive them into an early grave.
² This is actually not true. I stopped leaving personal artifacts at work right away after my first dotcom job let me go in 1998. I’ve never fully settled into a job since then, because I didn’t trust them to keep me, and I was right. I’ve had 14 jobs in 10 years, with eleven of those jobs being in the dotcom field.
³ There is no public sidewalk right in front of the main entrance – only an employee parking lot.
4 A total exaggeration of events yesterday – I was helping a friend clean house yesterday and it was nowhere near what my dad’s house in the dream looked like.
5 My dad is already remarried, has been for several years, and his anniversary isn’t til March, so I don’t know what that was about. ;)

Today is the one-year anniversary of when I started with the company that just fired me for having a health condition. In a way I’m disappointed that I didn’t make it to the one year mark, but then I realise that for them, my one year would not have been recognised until February 19, 2008, when they hired me from the temping agency.

As is usual for me after quitting or being let go from a job, I had a dream about the old job:

I had arrived at work with a clear belief that I had only been fired for one day, and that I could return on Monday. However, when I got to work and was standing in line with my coworkers, waiting to be let into the building, reality dawned – I had misunderstood – I was fired not only for Friday but for evermore from that company. I felt embarrassed, so I did what I always do in such a situation – I acted like I was completely in my right anyway (Virgos don’t like to admit they are wrong). I continued to wait in line. When it came time for me to go in, I realised I didn’t have my security key. I turned to Ben, who was standing behind me, and asked if we could go in at the same time because I’d forgotten my key. He looked hesitant but said ‘sure’ and we went in together.
Once inside, I climbed up the stairs to the loft area and went right to my desk, which was situated in the open loft space, overlooking the first floor below. As I approached my desk, I saw my black purse sitting on my chair. At this point I’d probably be considered a security threat if I sat down at the desk and pretended nothing had happened to me, so I kneeled down beside the chair and began filling up my purse with the personal artifacts I’d left behind when I was fired on Friday. I noticed two black cassette tapes on the desk – I’d loaned them out to coworkers who had given them back once they found out I was fired. I glanced at the cassette tape labels and was embarrassed at what I’d loaned out – it was old stuff, from my high school days, so it was Top40 style music.
My old boss approached, and told me she would cut me my last paycheck on the spot. I was thankful and excited – didn’t she know the company had already cut me my last check? HAH! Like I was going to admit this! I took the check happily and finished cleaning out my desk, which was more like a primary school desk with the enclosed metal shelf underneath it.
That’s all I remember.

Offbeat issues in the dream:

  • The guy standing behind me in the dream is, in real life, my friend Ben, not a coworker. I have never worked with him. However, there were two Ben’s at that company, so perhaps my brain was superimposing my friend’s face over one of the Bens I worked with?
  • In real life, my desk was not in the open loft area, it was in the corner in a cubicle shared with two other coworkers, next to the office of the director of support.
  • The black purse in question is something I used to own in college. I think I gave it away a few years ago. The thing is, in real life, most of my belongings were boxed up and handed to me on Friday on the way out. The only thing they forgot was my cheapo insulated lunch bag, which I don’t care about. That my old purse and more belongings appeared in the dream bodes well I think to the case I’m pleading to the labor board.
  • The embarrassment with the cassette tapes with the Top40 music was a throwback to earlier yesterday, when I had my iPod on ‘random play’, and a neighbor came over to discuss Halloween costumes. The iPod had been doing great with some Industrial music, and then suddenly a Stevie Nicks song came on and I got all embarrassed. No reason I should have, I confess my love for Stevie Nicks. ;) But there it was. I got embarrassed. The music style just did not fit with what had been playing. Bad DJ iPod! ;)
  • When my boss approached, it was the first boss I had at the company, not the new boss I’d had for a week before being fired. Also, to be clear, neither the new boss nor the old boss fired me – it was HR who fired me because of the recorded absences, and the only way HR found out immediately that I’d been absent is that with the new policy, I had to turn in a doctor’s note upon my return. My new boss was clearly upset and pissed off to be losing me, and she and I agreed that my old boss would be equally upset.

There seems to be a lot of embarrassment showing through in my dream. I am embarrassed to have been fired, yet at the same time, I was fired for the reason I wanted to be fired for. I was harassed about my health condition for months by those assholes, to great emotional expense. And the abject depression, coming home crying – all of that started within my first month on the job because of how badly they treat people in general – monitoring your screen as you work – there’s no trust, no love there.
It’s similar in all call center environments. I will never go back to call centers again. EVER. I promised this last year and became afraid when good work wasn’t showing up. Well this time I’m going to make good on my promise. Just like my man did. He worked in a call center with me back in 2002 and vowed never to go back to that hellish work again. And he made good on his promise, and he’s doing well. He can do it – I can do it.

One thing I did like about the dream – I was cut a second check. This is a good omen for me. I hope things work out the way I want for Round II.

Well. That’s that.

I got fired today.

I dragged my ass into work even though I was STILL having pain and bleeding profusely. I stepped out of my car at work and filled a pad and turned pale on the spot.
I staggered up the stairs to my desk after cleaning up in the bathroom and handing over the latest doctor’s note to HR.

I worked until 11am and was about to go on my scheduled lunch hour, when my new boss came up to me in a hurry, out of breath, and said that she needed to talk to me. I knew right then and there what it was about. She hesitated, and added, “It’s with HR” and looked really upset. I smirked. I said, “I know, I can tell. It’s okay.”

We walked next door and I felt like I was being led to jail. I looked everyone I passed in the eye, which is not characteristic of me. My hands literally felt bound by what was happening; I wasn’t allowed to talk to anyone, I had to report straight to HR. I couldn’t even say goodbye to the cow-orkers I like. Although my cubemate knew what was transpiring – he’s the guy with the chronic headaches – and BOY did he look pissed off. All I could do when I got up was give a pained look and mouth the words, “sorry, bye”.

I got into the meeting room where the HR lady was sitting. I was informed that I was being let go. My new boss sat next to me. I was told I’d exceeded my incidents. I asked for clarification. I wasn’t given clarification. So I said it in plain English: “I have been ABSENT from work too many times, that is what you mean by “incident”?”
The HR lady told me “yes”.

I had not even used up all my Paid Time Off days. But their policy, which was revamped in July, states that one must give 48 hours notice for any time off, and one cannot be absent more than three times in a 90-day period, unless one has a doctor’s note. In the case of a doctor’s note, one can be absent more than one day, and it shall count as an INCIDENT of absence, rather than 2 or more absences.
HOWEVER, if one incurs three INCIDENTS within 90 days, one can STILL be fired.

And so it was with me. I had reached my fourth INCIDENT of absence in 90 days. I explained to HR in front of my new boss that I have provided HR with a doctor’s note for every INCIDENT of absence, and that I’ve even provided a note from my surgeon, detailing that I have an INCURABLE STAGE III illness. The HR lady said she must do her job and follow procedure and yadda yadda, and that she can’t change policy just for me.

So here I was, being fired, despite my old manager telling me “I don’t think they’d fire you for this, they know it’s a health condition”, and my new manager telling me on Monday, “I’d think they’d be very careful to avoid firing you for having a health problem”.

Whoops!

So that’s that!
I was two workdays shy of having worked in that place for one year. I was afraid I’d walk out because I couldn’t take the sometimes weekly harrassment from HR. I’m so glad I didn’t have to walk. Those assholes have been stating for MONTHS that they want to fire me for missing work every month, and every month I say “even though I have a documented medical condition?” And they always nod grimly.

Now because of their deed, I have filed for unemployment, and I have an appointment with the labor board.

For my next career path, I will NOT be working in the dotcom field. I tried this last year and panicked and went back to dotcom after I had two REALLY bad experiences (The Internet Archive tried to fire me for having this same health condition but I quit rather than be humiliated, and then I worked for an optometrist in Oakland and got harrassed daily by a chick who detests white people and openly stated this on a regular basis). It’s so odd to me – prior to the Archive, in all my years of employment, I’d NEVER been discriminated against for any reason. Then BAM BAM BAM! The Archive, the optometrist and the dotcom job, all hatin’ on me.
Why you do this to me?

I will now try to look for work again, outside of the dotcom field. S’cuse me first while I take a short break from working at all. Hm, I can still make my trip to Michigan, can’t I? I had scheduled it last year to start .. well… today actually.
I’d have to put it on plastic, though. Hmmm. Probably not a wise idea.

and then the intestinal issues began…

Haven’t eaten dinner yet. No appetite.

It doesn’t help that my intestines have been a wreck for the past hour – enough so that I had pain, the runs and nausea all at once. This is due to taking a vegetable laxative earlier in the day to ease the constipation that comes with taking so much Tylenol 3 to ease the george pain.

I am hungry. I just don’t want anything available in the house.

I did talk with my father and I sent him information on my bank statement and current month’s worth of bills due or coming due. He said he’ll see what he can do to help me out. For that I am grateful.

I did look for work again and I did send out two resumes tonight.

Excuse me while I have another intestinal explosion with nausea.

…I return…

I’m finally eating, by the way. I’m having a salmon filet and some steamed bok choi. My wonderful boyfriend bought me these groceries the other day. I love him so much. One day, we hoped to be married…

But now that I’m in the sewer financially with no job…
People keep telling me I don’t know yet if I have no job but let’s just say I’m an accomplished pessimist and move on, mmkay?