A New Possiblity

SOOOOOOOO….I had a job interview this morning!  It’s a temporary job that will only last through August, but I have the opportunity to learn a new trade, per say.  I am very excited, as the guys I interviewed with are very charming and engaging.  I really hope this pans out into something I can do.  I’m facing a bit of a learning curve because this is in an industry that I have never worked in before, but I am ready for the task at hand.  No more sitting around the apartment twiddling my thumbs and having the only interaction I have with the outside world be with the checkers at the grocery store.  That would be an improvement.

Another improvement would actually have something to talk about with my husband at the end of the day.  He is very supportive of what I do at home and I thank him for that and he is my #1 fan with this blog.  I just would like to add something more to the conversation other than, “Oh, I had 67 hits on my blog today!”  I like having that many hits on my blog, don’t get me wrong.  It fuels the creative part in me, I just would like to offer a little more to the conversation and actually be bringing home a paycheck.  These student loans aren’t going to pay for themselves…

So, wish me luck and do a “may she get the job” rain dance in my honor.  I really feel positive about how things went and I hope the other candidates aren’t as dynamic as I was in the interview.

Here’s to new beginnings!

Shhhhh…It’s a Secret

secrets

Yesterday, after my epic post, ItalianHurricane posed the question, “You still don’t talk about your disorder, right?  Nobody knows in New Orleans?”  This made me think about how I navigate in my world with this giant, pink elephant in the room.  Part of me wants to shout it from the rooftops, but I know that would be social suicide.  Mental illness is still a very taboo subject and people get scared when they are faced with the fact that someone they know suffers.  It simply makes people uncomfortable.

This blog is not completely anonymous.  I haven’t told many people that I am writing again, but I do include my picture and have revealed enough about myself that if, by chance, someone that I know happens upon this blog, they would immediately know it is me.  I am not going to advertise this blog on Facebook and I’m not going to shout it from the rooftops that I am writing again.  This is my safe place, so far, and it is nice to have some anonymity in telling my story.  I am overwhelmed by the positive response I have received since starting this blog two weeks ago and I am going to continue to let it grow organically.

Back to ItalianHurricane’s question.  No, I don’t talk about my disorder in real life.  No one, except for a few select close people know that I have bipolar disorder.  I think that if I tell them, it will make me seem handicapped, and I am not handicapped.  I just move through my world a little differently than others – a little more anxiously, as it were.  I don’t tell my employers that I have this condition.  However, I will be applying for FMLA status with my next employer.  This will be my insurance policy so I do not lose my job if I miss work due to anxiety.  I don’t want to do it, but I need to protect myself and my income.  That means they can’t fire me because of my condition, even though I will have to reveal my big secret.  I think I am okay with that.

As we don’t really have many friends here, I don’t have anyone to tell about my diagnosis.  As I explained in my Friends post, everyone abandoned us after I got sick.  People just don’t deal well when you change your story.  My story changed in a massive way and I went from being outgoing and bubbly to depressed and drugged.  Needless to say, our social calendar is wide open.

I don’t know when the right time would be to reveal to a new friend that I have this condition.  I don’t want to lie about it, because it is such a huge part of who I am now, but I also don’t want to scare anyone away.  I guess it goes back to the idea that only those that are accepting and understanding are truly worthy of a friendship.  I’m tired of lying and hiding, but this secret is a doozy.  It’s up there with schizophrenia and if I am honest with myself, I would take having bipolar over schizophrenia any day.  I couldn’t handle the hallucinations.  However, I would never not be friends with someone because they had an illness.

Discrimination.  That is the root of all the rejection that my husband and I have experienced since my break.  That, and ignorance.  People are afraid of what they don’t understand.  If someone wanted to talk to me about my condition, I would be very open about my experiences.  I just have yet to find someone who really wants to talk about it.

Let me say this, I have a friend base that goes back to my younger years.  They have not walked away and only offer support and encouragement.  I am lucky to have them, even if I am only able to connect with them through the computer and texts.  It’s just the new friends that I have come across that are not accepting.  Maybe it’s because it is harder to make friends as an adult – you already know who you are and what you like and to bring someone into your life who is a little “off” can seem daunting.  This makes things lonely on the friend front.

My husband can’t be my everything.  I don’t expect him to be, but there is a lot of pressure on him and me, for that matter, to make each other feel fulfilled and nurtured.  That is why I am really enjoying the outreach of support I have received through this blog.  The encouraging words and compliments really push me forward to keep writing.  It’s nice to know that I haven’t lost all my writing skills and can complete a coherent statement.

So, thank you for being my virtual friends and reading what I have to say.  You are aiding in my recovery and giving me a confidence boost to head out and try to meet new people in New Orleans.  The real test will be when I reveal my big secret…

That Time I Was Fired for Being Nice

Too NiceI used to have a job as an assistant to a very high powered woman.  Think of Meryl Streep’s character in “The Devil Wears Prada”.  It was intense.  I was excited to get this job and attacked it full force, but I never received the proper training on the software we were required to use, so I was always kind of a step behind.  Not a good thing when you are working for a high powered executive.  I asked for help, and it was given (not without some grumbles), but nothing ever stuck.  Maybe I had a mental block about what I was learning–I don’t know.  What I do know is I tried my hardest to do the best job I knew how to do for this woman.

That job lasted about nine months.  Then I was called into the HR Department Head’s office where he and my direct boss were waiting for me.  They went on a whole diatribe about how I worked so hard and I was very resourceful about many aspects of my job, but I was just not “getting it”.  Then they said, “But you’re so nice!”.  As if that was supposed to make me feel better.

Around this time, my husband and I were about to sign on the dotted line for a house we were trying to buy.  Literally, the next day we were supposed to begin closing proceedings.  I was shocked, devastated…pretty much every emotion one feels when being fired from a job you have worked so hard for.  I promptly called our realtor and told her the deal was off, that I had lost my job and we had to stop all proceedings.

Looking back, I realize I was starting to become manic while I was working for this woman.  Hindsight really is 20/20.  But, at least I know that I’m a nice, professional person and I realized through the process of working, quitting, and being fired from a handful of jobs surrounding my break that I want to work with passionate people who aren’t just married to his or her job.

The last job I had was working for a silk screen printing company.  I don’t typically have allergies, but I was allergic to that job.  Literally allergic to the paints they used to print those shirts.  So much so that I missed work.  They told me they were okay with my absences, and I was finally getting my health under control.  Then, they fired me.  I wasn’t as shocked this last time.  I’ve come to accept being fired as a huge possibility when working for someone.  I sometimes feel like I just can’t catch a break.

HOWEVER.  I had a job interview today. It was with a temp agency, so basically, I’m hired but they have to place me in jobs.   I’ve been out of work for about 9 months now.  I was registered to work with a temp agency before, but haven’t had much luck working temp assignments through them.  I took a break from sending out my resume around the holidays, but I’m back at it full force again.  I really hope that this new gig can help me gain full time employment – I have had success with temp agencies in the past.  Let’s hope this one sticks.  Wish me luck!