A Bit More Than I Bargained For

I’ve been getting an overwhelming amount of inquiries about how my first week at the new job went, without any time prior to this to respond.

So far, things have been alright. I like the company and the people I work with. The work itself is actually much simpler than what I’ve experienced in previous jobs… for better or worse.

I’m still trying to get used to the realm of office politics, and though my general sentiment is not to get involved, I’ve definitely found myself walking into pockets of tension every so often this week. I made it as clear as possible to my boss halfway through the week that it is very important to me that everyone is on the same page (at least about my job) to help trying to avoid that tension, so I will just have to wait and see how things go moving forward.

Adjusting to working 40 hours a week is something I definitely expected to have some trouble with, but it wasn’t until day two that I realized that (if you include the commute) I am actually spending 60 hours per week away from home. That number is significantly more difficult to deal with, and the week consisted mostly of waking up, spending an hour getting ready for work, leaving for 13 hours, arriving home to eat and relax for one hour, and collapsing in exhaustion.

I’m really trying to figure out what I can do differently for the commute that will make it shorter, because those 40 hours (minus the commute) seem like a walk in the park in comparison.

My anxiety and panic peaked in the middle of the week when my bus was stuck in traffic in a tunnel (due to an accident) for about 45 minutes. Usually the claustrophobia of being trapped in a bus full of bodies is overwhelming enough (knowing I cannot step off the thing whenever I want, the policy is that they can only let you out at a bus stop), but being trapped in a tunnel full of cars on top of that and being completely unable to escape was overwhelming. I cried behind my sunglasses for the two hours it took to get home, and for the full hour I was awake after getting there. Once the crying started, I couldn’t convince it to stop, and I quickly found myself on the verge of giving up on this job.

Thankfully work was a bit better the next day, and I had a therapy appointment after work. By the time I made it to the appointment, though, the exhaustion and feelings of being completely overwhelmed had caught up with me again. I sat in the appointment and shrugged and cried, unable to form any words with the brain that had been wrung dry for the last few days. My therapist told me to set a date for myself of when I can review how I feel about the job and if it is realistic for me, and that helped a bit. I only cried one hour, instead of three.

By thursday my overwhelmed feelings were swapped out for exhausted delirium. Tiredness that goes beyond tired into the realm of funny, where nothing makes any sense. Hypomania began coming up through the cracks despite the weight of it all, and by the time I got home I was shuffling around merrily with completely unwarranted energy.

Over the weekend I’ve just laid low, sleeping, trying to get some of that energy back.

Since I haven’t had time to do the things I would normally do at home, a list has been growing for this weekend. It is long and a little ugly, but after crossing 5 things off Saturday I feel a little better.

In conclusion, I don’t know what is going to happen with this job, but I want to give it an honest try to see if I can adjust to it. The funny thing is that I know I am going to have these little episodes whether I like it or not, because I have them no matter what kind of situation I’m in. If I could feel like shit while sitting around or feel like shit and get paid for it, I may as well get paid… and see where it goes.

The format of this blog is going to have to change a little bit, and I am hoping to post more often than not. My aim is 3 updates a week, but that will largely be effected by, well, everything else. Stay tuned! I’ve at least been awarded a whole gamut of new topics with this change, and there are a few things I’m really excited to write about coming up!

2 responses to “A Bit More Than I Bargained For

  1. I used to work a large number of hours per week… I think it was around 60, which doesn’t sound TOO impressive on the Massive Amounts of Time Spent Working Scale… but it left me with no spare time at all, after sleeping and bathing and time spent going into and out of work were taken into account, so I sympathize with your 60-hour loss!

    (Of course it’s not all loss… Work can be very rewarding, and all….)…;-)…

    • Hey man, 60 is a lot, even for those so-called “normal” people I know, so you deserve a big thumbs up for being able to do 60/week.

      The trouble, as you said, is definitely with the time leftover, and when maintaining good sleep hygiene that only leaves me about an hour to bathe/eat in the morning at home and an hour to eat/relax in the evening at home. That has been a little taxing, to say the least.

      Thanks!

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