Weighing Matters

my journey to b.e.t.t.e.r

p.r.o.c.e.s.s.i.n.g.

I need to process. Or maybe I need to vent. My feelings are frayed, I’m vulnerable, annoyed, hurt, frazzled, embarrassed, frustrated and ticked. I’m also feeling a little shame for hanging on to this for so long.

So, I’m processing. I want to get over it.

There’s a co-worker who verbally accosted me on Wednesday. It’s not the first time we’ve had differences. [I considered her a friend. We attend church in the same ward. We’ve worked together for fifteen years.] We’ve had a few flare ups in the past. Last time I was more wrong than she was and I apologized, went to the injured third-party [a student office-aide] as well as the student’s mother and tried very hard to make it right. I spoke to the principal and apologized for my part of the problem.

The situation revolves around the school office insisting on buzzing [two buzzes] for me instead of calling for me by name over the intercom system. I can surely see the reason for that during class period. I would not want to be the cause of undue interruptions during school time The problem is they continually buzz before and after school, during the summer when students aren’t even there, and during teacher work days. [Let me say this has been going on for years! — me asking them not to do it, them continuing it.]

One day the secretary said to me, “Oh don’t let it bother you.” I said, “But I’m telling you it does bother me, so I’m asking you to change it.” [Just because someone insists that I shouldn’t be annoyed doesn’t really take care of my annoyed feelings!] I specifically asked her to let student aides know they should call me by name before and after school. The very next day we had the first blow-up. [She said she forgot to tell the student aide?!?] This was on a day when I had other things going on. My husband was home in bed, depressed, and hadn’t worked for several days and my battery was dead. Another co-worker had to come and get me early, early in the morning. Ugh.

So, yah, it was the last straw.

I do take full responsibility for my unprofessional behavior that day. And as I said, I did apologize and tried very hard to mend feelings and asked the specific student to not quit her job [she said repeatedly she wanted to quit her morning job anyway, long before this incident, and she did ultimately quit her before-school job but kept her lunch time position.]

Fast forward, next student aide.

Wednesday at 7:30 she doubled buzzed me. Fine. I called her and asked what was needed and she explained. I was walking toward the office and pleasantly said “If you just want to page me when you need anything, I’ll come right away.” She smiled. I smiled. I wasn’t trying to cause a problem. I was cheerful, helpful, doing my job, going my merry way. I immediately took care of the situation she had buzzed me for. [I did not say “page me by name, or don’t use two beeps, just “If you just want to page me when you need anything, I’ll come right away.” My exact words. One sentence. Big smile. Happy me.]

At 8:08 I was being yelled at. I was being abused! I was being humiliated in front of the students. I was being treated like a nincompoop!

I said “Can we talk about this?”

“NO.” Screaming NO, not just talking no.

[Believe me, there was much more to this conversation, but it’s ugly and would take so much space. I’ll just say I tried very hard to get the situation resolved and was very accommodating, polite, professional and soft-spoken the entire time!]

I asked the student, was I rude to you? She said I wasn’t. I said did I offend you? She said I didn’t.

I said, “Wow!” The student shrugged her shoulders several times and told me later she didn’t know why the total overreaction.

But the secretary went to the principle, he went to a administrator’s meeting, I was reprimanded. [No reprimand for the secretary who was s*c*r*e*a*m*i*n*g at a co-worker, in public, no less!]

Later: “I’m sorry I popped off at you like that.” [Then she totally eliminated the apology by telling me I remind her of a former employee who was terrible, TERRIBLE, to both of us.]

Really? That’s it?

Our “friendship” took a direct hit! There was collateral damage! I will be professional, polite, certainly civil, continue to do my job. But no. I need to take care of me. I won’t be putting myself in the cross-hairs again. If she actually is sorry . . . she needs to UNdo the damage she did.

Everything goes back to normal?

I don’t feel normal!

I need to process. Or maybe I need to vent. My feelings are frayed, I’m vulnerable, annoyed, hurt, frazzled, embarrassed, frustrated and ticked. I’m also feeling a little shame for hanging on to this for so long.

* * *

And, yes, my weight is up. I stuffed these emotions. It’s what I do. It’s what I’m good at.

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January 15, 2010 Posted by | Frustrations, Where it hurts | 1 Comment