I have been working a bit lately. I missed it. Not being able to work was so challenging on many levels to me. I need to be productive, to feel accomplished at the end of the day. I recently realized, while sitting on the sidelines, that my identity and sense of worth has always been deeply connected to my vocation. Not working was like a partial lobotomy.
It is a good gig for me. It is only a couple of days per week, I pick the days, and it gives me some spending money without affecting my SSDI claim.
After several months up here, with no real routines to adhere to and a lot of time on my derriere it has been surprisingly tiring to perform fairly menial duties. The cramping and spasms that have hindered me throughout my illness have been severe and I am forced to smile through excruciating pain in front of my new co-workers and caused several sleepless, painful nights.
The bigger challenge I face is knowing and minding my place, which is hard for me.
I work for a very nice man that I have known for almost 20 years. Ben now owns 2 finance companies and a lot of real estate, but I knew him when he was just a used car dealer. I walked into his dealership as an auction rep, we briefly talked and he told me he was all set for auctions. As I turned to leave, I noticed a jar on his desk requesting donations for a little girl with Cancer. It was his 3-year old daughter Sophie. I donated a hundred bucks, wished him well and left.
I would get a call later that day. Ben said, “your donation didn’t have anything to do with this, but come by next week and we’ll talk.” We would become associates and friends for many years, culminating in my working for him and a partner in 2016. We never talked about the death of Sophie at 4, of the fundraisers we coordinated to raise money for her, and of his divorce soon after. When his partner laid me off in 2017, he told me to keep my phone on. He called.
I am doing some pretty menial stuff because that’s what he needs. His finance company is growing, his staff is overwhelmed and a lot of people are doing multiple roles. I have already found about 4 different departments to assist. The problem is that these people don’t know who I am or what my background is. If Ben didn’t tell them neither am I. So I was initially viewed skeptically, then looked at funny when I say or do something that reveals my extensive background in this field. So when I mention my challenge in finding and minding my place, I have to constantly check myself and just do what I am asked to do. Which is really difficult for me.
The office is buzzing. They are talking about me. Ben is already asking if I can work more. My prediction https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/24840312/posts/1746149506 is that I will be offered a full-time position soon. Which will be a real dilemma, because I will have to drop my SSDI claim. That is akin to playing Russian Roulette with my future.
I will explain more in my next post…
6 thoughts on “dipping a toe in the water”
Glad to ‘see’ you and nice post – I’m glad you’ve been working a little (I can relate to the abundance of time and fanny-spread – although you probably don’t have that) .
You didn’t ask for advice so…
Otherwise, take care of yourself
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advice is always welcome. And I have gut spread. But the new treadmill is working out well and I broke out the kettlebells today
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OH! Good for you. I still haven’t gotten on the treadmill…this weekend – that’s one goal.
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I was wondering what happened to you.
This was an amazing story. You have such a way with words….Honestly, I can’t get enough.
Ever since I became a parent, I’ve been extremely sensitive to kid’s suffering (abuse, illnesses, deaths). I’m speechless. Lot’s of couples divorce when sth like this happens to their kid. They don’t know how to cope with the loss and the pain nor do they know how to live together any longer, talk to one another, confide, share. So, instead of talking about their pain, they run away because it’s easier. It’s tough.
As for your dilemma, well, it’s understandable. Think it through. It’s not a question of whether or not you’re willing to work, but whether you’re able to. Can’t you stick to the on and off work plan or you believe his expectations are too high? Decide what’s best for you, not to please him (though he’s you friend) because you think you owe him one.
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it’s amazing that you noticed my absence! Thank you for your kind words. Yes, this story is one of many formative moments in my life, very sad. And as for my dilemma the real question isn’t my willingness but my ability. I would do anything to go back to work for him, he’s not demanding at all and I don’t feel I owe him although I’m grateful that he is helping me right now. I’m helping him as well I know that much. It’s a tough decision. I addressed this in my second post of the day
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I’ll check it out later.