Tuesday, March 21, 2006

More responsibility!

Excitement! Terror! Confusion!

In the past day and a half I've been handed a whole bunch of stuff to do. Most of it formatting, not much of it requiring huge amounts of thought. It's stuff I like to do, but not stuff that challenges me. The challenge comes in when I have to juggle multiple deadlines and multiple managers with entirely different ideas of what my priorities should be. The joys of assisting a department rather than a person...

Anywho, just now I've been handed another project. It will only require about 2 hours of my time a week, so it's not huge in terms of fitting it in with what I'm already doing. The intimidating part is that it's important! It's not just formatting a resume or report for someone, or making sure that they have food and room for a meeting. No! I am now responsible for updating the spreadsheet that tells everyone what the status of the projects one of the departments is working on. This is a job that usually falls to a Project Coordinator, and yet me! The lowly Admin Assistant has been given this. I get to talk to the manager in charge of the practice, and go from there. It's mine to run with; I own it.


I know that I can do this. In fact, one of the things that's had me dissatisfied in this job is the lack of responsibility I have. So on the one hand, I'm very excited about this. On the other hand I'm terrified because the scope of most of my projects is much, much less than this. Like ordering business cards for people. So I'm also terrified, because I've been doing stuff that a potted plant could do for most of the past year and my running-things skills are out of practice. I'm also confused. I've been looking for a new job. I'm very, very tired of driving for 3 hours a day, and this job has been getting to the point where it's just not worth it anymore. But. What if this is the start of something? What happens if I decide I *like* my job? Oy.

Deep down I know those are rhetorical questions. I doubt that I will ever love what I do here enough for it to be worth the drive, and the exhaustion, disconnection and lack of personal time that goes along with it. Still, I'm hoping that I'll stop dreading getting up in the morning while I look for something else.

On a completely random and unrelated note, I use exclamation marks in my titles. A lot!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Pickles and knitting

Today is a better day. Thank you to everyone who gave me support and hugs and advice. I've been trying to go to bed earlier and I've been playing my Valentine's Day gift (Green Day's Bullet in a Bible live CD) in the car pretty much non-stop because it's hard to be sleepy when you're resisting the urge to headbang. Which, like sleeping, isn't a really good thing to do while you're driving.

Today I went out at lunchtime. My friend L. and I went to Chapters then to Subway. I picked up the second SnB knitting book, the SnB Project Journal and the new O magazine. I can't wait to get home and figure out new knitting stuff to do. Last weeked I knitted so much that I got a bump on one of my fingers. I just love this knitting stuff.

At Subway I got a footlong chickenbaconranch sub, and I got pickles on it.

So today's betterness is brought to you (and me!) by pickles and knitting.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Sick, tired, frustrated.

Warning: there's gonna be some self-pity. I've been torn about making complainy posts here because I know people who are much sicker, much more tired and likely much more frustrated than I am. I am reminded, though, that my world is mine and other people's worlds are theirs. In my world I'm sick, tired and frustrated.

Almost two weeks ago the roommate caught a cold. She was working at a conference for a couple of days and stayed in the city. On the Friday of that week, instead of staying home and getting better, she elected to come to the office which meant a grand total of 3 hours spent trapped in a car with me (this was how she once described our daily commute. Yes, I'm having a hard time letting go of that one.) Last Monday I came down with the cold: sore throat, headache, chills, fever, etc. I spent two days at home (until the fever went away) and have been steadily getting better since. Except for the coughing. It's not bad during the day as long as I keep up a steady supply of water and don't let my throat dry out. Nighttime is another story. I cough if I lay down too flat, I cough if I don't lay down flat enough, I cough if I get too warm, I cough if I get too cold. I've been through 3 different cough remedies, and I'm still waking myself up coughing at 2 am.

This brings me to #2, tired. I. Am. Exhausted. This morning I was fighting sleep while driving the 401. Biting my tongue to shock myself into alertness, that sort of thing. Highly dangerous. Not the first time either. I don't know what to do about it. The roommate doesn't drive, and usually falls asleep herself. Even if she doesn't, there's little to no conversation so it's not like I get any stimulation from that area. I do listen to the radio, and change to cd sometimes, loud stuff like Blink-182 and Green Day. I have a coffee with me every morning. I have tried going to bed earlier at night, but at some point I need time to have life and getting home at 7 or 7:30 at night doesn't leave much time for relaxing. Last night there was laundry to do, dinner to make and clean up from and lunches to make. Fred does help me since he knows how tired I am, so it's not like I'm doing it all alone. Still. In order to get anything at all done on an average night (never mind one on which I want to go to the gym) I rarely sit down to relax before 10. Which, when I get up at 5:30 in the morning is technically past by bedtime. I'm burning out.

Which brings me to #3: frustration. I feel stuck. I don't have time to do things I really want to do. I'm looking for a new job close to home, which would certainly help with the situation, but I can't take a job just to take a job closer to home. I had an interview at a place in Kitchener, but I turned down a second interview because while it was only a 1/2 hour drive from home, it was a large pay cut, a contract with no guarantee of a job at the end of 10 months, and what promised to be pretty boring work. I've spent every day since I turned down the second interview wondering if I made a mistake, but I don't want to take a job just for the sake of getting a job. I want to do something that I won't hate; I don't have to be in love with it, I just don't want to hate it. I'm not challenged at work right now and as a result of that (plus the exhaustion) I've started to make mistakes. I don't like making mistakes. I get upset and embarrassed. Then it flows into my personal life and I make mistakes there, and I get more upset and more embarrassed. While I was trying in vain to fall asleep last night I relived over and over again the embarrassment I felt when I mis-read an email from a member of a group I sing with, and sent an answer out to a whole bunch of people, which showed I obviously didn't read the first email very carefully, and I felt like a numpty.

Another part of feeling stuck is that I'm waiting. Waiting to get my house back, waiting for everyone to be ready to move on to the next part of our lives, waiting for there to be enough time, enough space, enough money. Waiting. I'm taking control of the things that I can (going to the gym, job searching, stuff like that). Some of the waiting will be done soon (about 2 months at this point). Some of it (like the money part) likely never will be, since really, how much money is enough?

I'm all over the map, here, I know. This is a peek inside my brain these days, and it distresses me because it's not what I'm usually like. *sigh* If anyone's looking for me, I'll be napping under my desk.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Remembering isn't just for November

As I was driving in to work this morning I heard on the news that another Canadian soldier was killed in Afghanistan this morning.

It made me think of one of my friends who is currently serving in the Canadian armed forces. He's in Canada right now, but has been told that he can expect to be deployed in the Spring.

When I got to work this morning I had an email from that friend that had this tribute link in it. Warning, it made me cry. Then again, I'm a giant mushball at the best of times. Still, the fact that another name has been added to the list of our fallen soldiers is a sad thing.

I know that the numbers of dead U.S. soldiers is far, far higher, and that the civilian deaths in the Middle East are also off the charts. I guess it's just that this feels so much closer to home for me, and is certainly closer to my heart.