Monday, September 24, 2012


I think that I'm allowed to share the news. Dylan proposed to Brittani in Paris on the 2nd anniversary of their first date. I do not know the details, only that Brittani described it as the most romantic and memorable night of her life. They are back in London now, and will be headed home Friday. Tim and I are very pleased.

I am not sure what is going on at work, but the one thing that I know for a fact is that the organization wants to keep me very badly. That has never happened to me before. I've always been expendible. I don't know why it is that I find myself dealing with angry people, again and again. I've always had the notion that when you find yourself in the same repeating scenario, God is trying to teach you something.

My customary way to handle angry people is to leave them alone. I avoid them. I come from a very angry family, so that made things awkward, but I've never found myself able to reason with angry people. Seems like they want to be mad about something and you're as good an excuse as any. So I do the 'duck and run'. I'm not afraid. It's mostly that I know that I am, at the heart of myself, an angry person too, and I have spent a lot of years carefully trying to be something else. I've gotten so good at not being angry that when I do get angry, I always feel guilty and ashamed. No matter what, I feel that I have failed when I get pissed.

Finding myself at odds with this co-worker was difficult. I tried very hard to keep my mouth shut, my head down, and to work like none other, but she really did want to fight. It was non-stop sniping and complaining. I asked for a transfer, sending a group e-mail to four people. I got no reply, and two weeks after that, I came home just sick to my stomach once again. The woman had picked all night long. Finally, I snapped. I said firmly, "You know, Bev, there is more than one way to accomplish a task. Just because I do it differently, does not mean that I am wrong or that I am stupid, and you need to lighten up."

She was shocked spitless. When the next shift came in, she was telling them all, over and over, how I had gotten mad and began screaming at her. There was no screaming. But there it was: my word against hers.

I'd apprised the managers of the problems right along but had received no real response. They know that she is difficult, and that every single person who has ever worked night shift leaves due to the difficulties. I went on night shift because I was supposed to train a kid. Bev was too impatient, and the managers felt that the boy had a good heart, and with patient guidance could be an asset. Much to my surprise, as soon as I went on nights, the boy was transferred to days. I think that they felt that because Bev and I are approximately the same age, I'd be better able to tolerate it. Maybe they thought she wouldn't pick so much on a peer. I don't know, but I sure had a problem.

After a sleepless day, I went in to work that night and gave my two week notice. That decision was based on the fact that I want to work there as a COTA one day. I didn't want to jeopardize that by having a complaint on my record that I was hard to get along with or unprofessional. It seemed wise to give up the job. Tim had been pushing me to do that for a couple weeks. I really was wanting the stress to end. I was miserable and worst of all, that angry person that lives inside of me? I was afraid that that she'd get loose...that I would get angry. That I would behave badly. That's what scared me the most of all, to be very honest.

Two weeks ago, I handed in my resignation to my manager. Last week, I went in to talk to HR about a job I was looking at. Since my resignation was not yet in effect, would it be considered wrong, or trickery to apply for this job as an insider. The HR person looked at me, shocked, began to ask questions, and then got another person who asked even more questions.

It was explained to me that they have spent $3500 to train me for this job. That I was valuable. That I was just what they were looking for. That if I didn't fit where I was at, I should have been moved upon request. That worksite harassment was not tolerated.

One thing led to another, and suddenly things were happening. The most shocking thing is after speaking with my coworker, she received a five day suspension. The other staff (and the management) backed me. The night nurses. The security staff.

I am applying for new jobs within the company.

I'm valuable to the company. They want to keep me.
That still amazes me.

I think this is the value of education.


Mary said...

I, too, had a difficult co-worker named Bev. She wanted me gone and told our supervisor one untrue tale about my work habits. It was believed, not questioned or investigated. No other co-workers were asked to substantiate. No one else would have. I was fired. Nine years of exemplary service, gone. Due to a Bev.

BUSH BABE said...

Gosh - sorry to hear Mary's experience too. I am glad you are being valued (after a weird lag by your employers) and glad you are working with your choices. I agree wholeheartedly - education gives you (well me anyway) a bigger view and more confidence that your choices are clear. Interesting to see what happens next...

Anonymous said...

Glad this time you are being supported and valued more than the trouble maker. Wish it had been that way for you at TSC. Hope this leads to the job you are aiming for. Best Wishes, from Debbie L.

KarenTX said...

Yay, you! So glad they finally realized that they have a gem in their midst!!

Debby said...

Debbie - No, no! Don't feel badly for me about Tractor Supply. My gosh! We had a manager with an inappropriate temper. I knew that I was leaving. It was sensible for me to be the one to report the problem. Any backlash at me would come after I was gone. It was a chance to effect a change after I left. My coworkers were certainly worth it, and the boss too, actually. He was a man who dealt with stress poorly ~ by venting at everyone else. He wasn't a bad man. We all had many a good time at that store, and I will always have fond memories of it.

As far as a gem in their midst? Dunno. Once the story got outside the 'house', things began to happen quickly. I actually didn't expect it to. I went to HR with a question on the legality of bidding on a job internally when I was resigning. It would give me an edge, even though I technically still with the company at the time I bid, I would be gone by the time they were interviewing. A woman asked me why I was resigning. I explained. She got someone else, I told them again, suddenly everyone was "No, no, no, no, no."

The managers are not happy with me, and I guess it makes them look as if they were not handling it. I've been counselled about that. Repeatedly. Today I was told 'if I had only come to them...' I did. On August 26th.

I'm not perfect, but I do like people, I do have a good work ethic, I do my best.

Debby said...

Oh, and Mary? If you are who I think you are, you need to call me, sistah!!!!

Mary said...

I'm Mary in Florida, a reader and fan. And fellow BC survivor. Sounds like your bad experience is about to turn around and that is the just and fair thing. Wrongs need to be righted. I am very happy for you. My experience was unjust, unfair and as wrong as they come. And I worked at a Christian organization. Go figure...

A Novel Woman said...

Don't be afraid of your anger, but of losing control. Being angry is normal, but it's how that anger is expressed that matters. I always think of Atticus Finch and how he channeled his anger, how he used his wits, not his fists. And yes, when you're educated and you have options, you don't feel like you're backed into a corner with no way out. You are so wise, and I admire you (whether or not that makes you uncomfortable. Don't care.)

jeanie said...

Oh Deb - different dramas but the "I'm valuable to the company. They want to keep me." really resonates right now for me in my new job too after a shocker.

Congratulations on things moving forward - squee!!!

jeanie said...

Oh, and congratulations to Dylan and Brittani also!!