Working

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There’s been a big change in my life since I last updated my blog. I now have a job.

I created and am now managing a website for a local nonprofit, as well as handling all their social media and creating brochures and posters and forms for them. The tasks are all things I am comfortable with and come very naturally to me. This is the first time I’ve had a job that is a near-perfect match to my actual skills and aptitudes. I’ve turned out to be good at this job. I am getting a lot of positive feedback on my work from my boss and the public.

The job basically fell into my lap. My husband was already working part time for this organization, and the boss was saying to him that they really needed to hire someone who can do this kind of thing, and he said his wife can. He only said that because he thought that a work-from-home situation could probably be arranged, and when the boss asked to meet me that’s what I thought it was going to be. But that’s not what was offered, and I was so overwhelmed when talking to her that I agreed to everything she wanted. I left there with my head spinning, almost not even sure what had just happened.

It’s only part-time, three afternoons a week. I thought that would be manageable. Unfortunately, it’s getting harder and harder for me to be there.

The environment is loud, noisy, smelly and generally chaotic. I get a headache or nausea almost every time I’m there. I gagged at work twice yesterday. Meanwhile, most of my coworkers are deeply unhappy because our boss treats them badly, and of course I pick up on that. The atmosphere is tense.

Strangely enough, my boss seems to treat me better than she treats many of my coworkers, which greatly surprises me! (I suspect it’s because she’s the one who hired me, whereas most of them were hired by the previous manager and are more set in their ways, which are the old manager’s ways.) But even so, I don’t like her. She’s not a nice person. It doesn’t matter if it’s me getting treated badly or other people; it affects me either way.  I like and respect a lot of my coworkers and feel they deserve to be treated better.

I don’t want to be there. My whole body feels consumed by dread when I have to go there. I like the work itself, but I don’t know how much longer I can keep going there to that place.

The vast majority of what I do can easily be done from home, and I wrote my boss an email before Christmas saying that I want to work from home most of the time and explaining why that would be a good thing for all concerned. No, I didn’t mention that I don’t like her or that I think she treats people badly! I just explained that I have health issues that cause fatigue and I also have sensory processing disorder which causes me to have trouble concentrating at work due to the all the sensory stresses in the workplace environment. I didn’t mention autism, because I still have never sought a diagnosis and I think that’s a pretty big claim to make to your boss when you have nothing to back it up. So I put the focus on my sensory issues and told her that I believe I would be far more happy, healthy and productive working from home.

My boss told me that we could have a meeting to discuss what I’d written in my email, but one thing after another has come up to prevent that meeting from happening.

I had originally taken this job on a three-month trial basis but as of tomorrow I will have been working there for four months. I keep showing up, but I am getting more and more miserable every day. I had some time off over Christmas and New Years and it reminded me how much happier and at peace I am when I get to stay home.

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