You Had To See This Coming.

Tomorrow I am walking into one of my current employers and resigning.  Mind you, I have only been there for less than a week.

If you read the last post, then you saw this coming.

Anxiety has turned into depression, and I cannot handle being in a role that requires me to be in a face-to-face setting.

So, tomorrow, I deliver this:

To Store Management and Whomever Else It May Concern:

It is with my deepest regrets that I am writing to inform you that I am resigning from my <redacted> position effective immediately.

It has come to my attention that this job is not the best fit for me at this point in my life. I have issues of a personal matter that are intrusive to my work life and that will have an impact on my performance in my current role. I greatly appologize for these unforseen events and for the inconvienence that this may have caused you and your company. Rather than inhibit your business, I feel that it is best that I step down from my current role.

I do appreciate the opportunity to work for such an outstanding company such as yours and I do hope that I may be considered for future employment with you. I wish you all the best and hope that you can quickly find a replacment for my role with your company.

Best Regards,

<redacted>

So, it’s now time to focus on either a cubical type gig or something from home.

That’s my plan.

Sleepless Over Office Supplies

Here I am. Sitting at my computer at 1:25am having a panic attack.

Why? What’s wrong?

I am terrified of putting on a red shirt tomorrow.

I started work for… well let’s just say a large office supply retailer that is named after an actual office supply… and I have yet to complete a full shift. Tuesday I made it for a whopping 3 & 1/2 hours before the people and the openness started getting to me. I can’t handle it. Even after taking yesterday off, I am still in a sense of complete dread about going to work tomorrow. I have tried all day to put everything out of my head, but here I am. I was in bed, watching Fawlty Towers, waiting for my medication to kick in. I got sleepy for a few moments; however the dread has counteracted my pills. I tried forcing myself to go to sleep; however that obviously hasn’t worked.

I actually have sealed myself up in my geek-lair with the oil diffuser cranked with a clove & cinnamon mix and some incense burning. I am hoping that these sweet aromas will help me calm down and possibly get some sleep.

I am not holding my breath.

I am just terrified of going to that place tomorrow. I actually have a good notion to type up a resignation letter; however I am stuck on the male notion that I am just being a giant pussy and I know that is false logic. I have walked around this house anxiety-ridden and depressed for almost two days now and I am not sure that overcoming a (hopefully) temp job in retail is going to make me better. I still have my 2nd job and a few good prospects that have popped up lately. Honestly, I believe that this job is taking up time that could be put to better use by looking for another job and also polishing up on my Excel and Word skills.

I just don’t want to put on that damn red shirt.

 

Welcome Back!

To catch you up (Sorry, no condiment jokes this time), I am now working 2 jobs! I sell computers and stuff by day and on my off days and nights I evaluate search engines and stuff.  Together, these pay what I used to make working in the IT field, but still no benefits.  So, we are still insurance-less.

(Speaking of which, if you have a minute to check this out please do and please share this link. Any and all help is appreciated!)

I have a job interview on Monday and I am hoping that it goes well.

 

Also, I joined Facebook again.

“Why”, you ask?

Because I have to somewhat foolish notion that things are going to be different this time. People are constantly sharing meaningless and meaningful posts and I am dicking around on Instagram and … well mainly Instagram.

I am being cautious, and only adding people that I actually give two shits about and that number is pretty damn small. If anything, it will be added to my list of time wasting crap things that I do to waste time. However, this time I have set some ground rules!

My Rules for Facebook:

1. I don’t use the mobile app or messenger. If you send me a message on it and expect a quick answer; then you are going to have a bad time. That’s what WhatsApp, Allo, or a text message is for.

2. Rejection: It’s going to happen. I don’t want to hear about your butt-hurt if I don’t accept your friend request or invitation to your rescue dog’s Quinceañera. You shove that way down and save it for your therapist.

C. The first time I see some “If you share this 37 times in a row, Jesus will cure you of El Cancer”, then you’re out of here.

4. If I haven’t spoken to you in “X” years, then I probably am not going to start now.

Rule Amendment #1: Rule#5: Fuck off with the Game Requests

 

So far, which has been a whole day, I haven’t seen anything horrible. I also have not seen anything of real value, either. We will see how it goes.

 

 

Condiment Jokes and a Full House.

So, how about a little ketchup?

See what I did there?

Anyway…

So, in late December, we had a friend of ours move in. He is trying to reboot his life and we couldn’t stand the idea of him spending WAY too much money to rent a recliner and live under the Orwellian rules of his mother, so he lives here now.  So far, it’s been kind of fun having him live here. I say “kind of” because of this:

Me: Moderate Progressive Atheist.

Him: Somewhat Progressive Conservative Christian.

(I know! I smell sitcom in the making as well.)

We have had a few heated discussions and we have now come to the point where it isn’t a good idea to talk politics or religion, for the sake of the household. Normally, I would welcome such debate; however, usually when I have a discussion like this the other person goes home when it is all said and done, but in this case we live together. So, I have come to the realization that he is going to think his way and I am going to think my way and we just work to find common ground. We’ve been friends for decades, so it isn’t that hard. I like having him around, not for debate purposes, but for general conversation and company.

Also, we got a new dog!

She is a Russell Terrier/ Standard Poodle mix and is adorable. Her name was Popcorn; however she is now Bella (for Bellatrix LeStrange); however she is so not living up to her namesake. We named her that because of the Nerd Tradition of our dog’s naming scheme. We have a Marvel Character, A Doctor Who/Firefly Character, and now a Harry Potter Character (Our oldest came pre-named, but she shares a name with a Disney character). This dog is perpetually happy. She wags her tail like a paint mixer and with such force her entire body wags. She is so full of energy and so goofy, it was one of the best decisions that I have made so far this year.

We are also having a kid. ..

 

 

 

 

 

…come live with us this summer. Our housemate’s kid is coming to stay for the summer. She and her brother stayed for Spring Break and she loved staying with us. So, she is bunking in with us come early/mid June. She’s a great kid, too! She keeps a better house than 3 adults and that’s without prompting or a promise of a reward! I was astounded to see a 15 year old kid take out garbage and clean up a kitchen simply because it “needed to be done”.  Of course, I told her parents this and they were astounded that she cleans our house, but not theirs.  I still say she’s a good egg.

All in all, things are on an upswing from last year (*knock on wood) and hopefully will continue to get better here at the home-front.  I am planning on keeping up with this blog/journal more and hopefully there won’t be any more gaps between posts. The only thing that would keep me from doing so is if I land a job. So, if there is a gap, hopefully it’s because I am working and that is taking up my time.

Because ,unfortunately,  I don’t get paid to write a blog about my life’s adventures.

Or lack thereof.

 

Where The Fuck Have You Been?

Unlike the metaphorical father that left for a pack of smokes X number of years ago, I am back.

Where have I been?

Well, I will tell you.

In February, I started a job. I landed a “work-from-home” techsupport gig… or so I thought. I got a call back from a company called Kelly Services. I was tested and interviewed for this work-from-home gig. I was made an offer and I accepted. I then was told what I would be doing:

I was to be working as an AppleCare Advisor for all iOS devices.

Now, you may be thinking that is AWESOME; however it was far from. The job payed crap (for a technical support position) and the “benefits” that they offered was from the healthcare.gov website. So basically, they didn’t offer any healthcare insurance at all.  They sent me an iMac to work with and I had to disassemble my current computer system. Which was heartbreaking (Like the ending of Ol’ Yeller kind of heartbreaking).

Also, I should mention this: I FUCKING HATE APPLE iOS.

I did try to keep a positive attitude about the entire thing (No, really, I did).

I went through the 4 weeks of training to learn NOTHING about iOS that I didn’t already know; however I did learn a few things regarding the interaction between iOS and Mac OS X  and it was interesting. I basically took aced tests over basic IT concepts and played games on my tablet. When it finally came down to the most basic of skills that we needed to work at this job: learning the call system, we got almost no training.

You would think that the training would include a large portion of how to use the Apple Care ticketing systems (aka: iLog) and how to use all of it’s features. You would think that we would have access to this tool before we took calls. You would think that our trainers that did assist us in taking the few calls we did before we started work would be helpful; however it was just the opposite. We got to take a few calls during training and we were “mentored” by the most apathetic guy on the planet (and that’s coming from me!) who didn’t seem to care about anything other than us n00bz getting him in trouble.  It wasn’t until the last 30 minutes of our last day that we got somewhat trained on this system. The next day we went into full production.

(Basically, up until we got access and training, we were shown screenshots of iLog and that’s it. Imagine me showing you pictures of the drivers side part of the dashboard and explaining how they should work. Then, after a couple of lessons with just the pictures and my tutorial/explanation, I tell you to get in the car and take it out on the freeway.)

On my first day of production, I started on time and taking calls like a champ. I muddled my way through iLog and did pretty well (IMO). Until, iLog and my Apple VPN shit the bed. I didn’t panic. I called out attendance line to report the issue and was told that I would need to call the Help Desk. No problem. I rebooted my iMac and called the help desk. While on hold, my iMac booted and I tried signing in again. iLog still showed that it had a connection error. While I was waiting, my mouse started to move and I kept getting a series of IMs. WTF? I wrestled my mouse from whoever had remoted into my iMac and opened the first IM.

Did you ever see the movie “Office Space”?

…Bob: I have eight different bosses right now.

Eight, Bob. So that means that when I make a mistake, I have eight different people coming by to tell me about it. That’s my only real motivation is not to be hassled, that and the fear of losing my job. But you know, Bob, that will only make someone work just hard enough not to get fired.

And that’s what was happening.

I had put my iLog into an auxiliary code that didn’t go over well. Apparently, I had someone remoting into my computer to get me out of it and multiple people yelling at me via Jabber. My choice to place myself in “Offline” when my system was… well, offline was a bad choice.  So, I had all of these strangers trying to get my attention to get me to change it. When I advised everyone that I was having technical issues and on hold with the help desk, I was told that I should be in “Break” and not “Offline” (Because that makes sense in their world). I then had the multiple people explaining why and that I was “doing a bad thing” by avoiding calls. I then left a message for the help desk and tried force quitting the app. This fixed it; however a call to the attendance line again later, I was told that without a ticket number from the help desk that I would be marked as absent from half of my shift. The above events took about 25 minutes and most of it was explaining to people what was happening. It did not take 4 hours. So, queue the panic attack.

I tried taking another call and made it through it; however I was done for the day.

The next day I logged in and was determined to have a better day. That didn’t last long.

The key metric that is monitored for an AppleCare Advisor with Kelly Services is attendance. You get five occurrences before you get the boot. I received an email stating that with the one day that I had to take care of my wife and logged in late during training, some other tardy that I don’t remember and the prior day’s episode that  I had 3 occurrences, and this email was to make me aware of that.  So, I sent an email to my trainer, my supervisor and my team lead:

I resigned effective immediately.

Yep, rather than having another termination on my resume`, I just gave my notice. So, now I am looking for a job again and honestly, I am glad that I quit; however, I was kind of excited to work again. I emailed my disability lawyer that I tried to return to work, but failed at my job.  I have yet to hear anything back.

I have an appointment with the county mental health clinic this week. I may be entering an IOP to deal with some shit, if that’s available. I have been dealing with depression and anxiety a lot. I have also been having mixed episodes, which suck balls.

On a brighter note, I did get a new phone recently and I fucking love it…

And no, it wasn’t an iPhone.

 

 

Positive Change While Watching the Snow Fall.

If you read my ramblings, then you know I live in a secret lair in North Texas. As I type this out, I am watching the snow dust the ground in fluffy white splendor. We don’t see snow that often and when we do: All hell breaks loose. People make a mad dash to the store for bread, milk and eggs. People still drive like it’s a dry road despite the cold wet white stuff all over the place. The entire state literally panics and shuts down (Except for EMS and TxDOT).

But, I am digressing.

I am here in my central-heated home typing this out because I have good news! I have a 2nd interview with an awesome company doing  help-desk work in their IT department, but remotely (AKA: From Home). I did have 2 final interviews set up; however one was cancelled due to some corporate policy that they cannot hire past employees. I honestly think that it’s bullshit since they ask you on the application if you have previously worked for them and it’s the most current previous  job on my resume, yet I still got a phone interview and a live interview. It was mentioned in my live interview that this was a thing (the phone one was too see if I was still batshit crazy, which I am); however I was told ,since I went part-time at the end, that the issue of re-hiring wasn’t a problem, because the policy was mainly  regarding salary. Oh well, honestly they were my fall back anyway.

No loss, really.

So, 2017 is looking OK so far and hopefully I will be in a job that allows me to work from home, doing the nerdy shit that I like.

**knocks on wood**

A Swift Kick in the Balls.

I cannot recall hating a year so fucking much as 2016. 2016 has been nothing more than a year of loss. I have come to an understanding that my being almost 40 means that my heros are going to be dead soon; however I didn’t expect so many at one time. Today, however, is the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Today we lost our princess: Carrie Fisher.

I am in tears, literal tears, as I type this out. We have lost 50 celebrities from music icons to statesmen this year. That’s almost one per week this year and 2016 still has a few days left. I cannot believe that one of my biggest heros is gone.

It sucks.

Not only was she Princess Leia, and later General Leia, she was a huge advocate for mental health issues. When I was first diagnosed as bipolar, I watched a documentary called “The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive” by Stephen Fry. I was shocked to see her in it. I felt a calm come over me when I found out that “Princess Leia” was bipolar as well. Carrie Fisher became more of my hero that day because I knew that if she could live with being bipolar, then I could too.

I will miss her terribly, despite I am just a fan that she never met. She meant the world to me.

So long, Princess.

 

 

Regarding: 2017

With Xmas behind us and NYE in sight, I keep reading articles and such regarding what 2017 will bring. With all of the celebrity deaths that have happened this year and major events that shocked the world, like the Brexit and Trump winning the election, people seem to have a “it can’t get any worse” attitude. I don’t see it that way. I see it getting “worse” because we will see the fruition of all of these bad decisions coming to light; however it is through pressure that change is made.

Sure, pressure sucks ass, but it leads to change.

I see the next year as a year of learning. I see liberals learning to be a bit more conservative and conservatives learning to be more liberal. I see the political landscape of the US changing, because Trump is going to be a learning opportunity for a lot of people (myself included). I see change in this next year and a lot of it; however not all change is good. I feel that some things will change for the worse and some will change for the better. I know that’s a broad statement; however I am not psychic.

I am not Nostradamus for fuck’s sake.

I think that people are going to lose things, mainly ideologies that they thought were sacred and have to re-think a lot of things. I see this next year as both a “dark-age” and a “renaissance”  all wrapped up in one. Meaning I think that some changes are going to be stifled and some changes are going to flourish. I think people are going to wake-up this coming year and start to think about things differently.

I see the new political climate changing things as well. I see it destroying progress while creating new progress in other areas. I see people fighting to make progress in areas that the new administrations isn’t and I see somethings progressing forward despite being denied or spoken against. I see a change in American democracy and politics in general.

I see conflict and I see change.

However, these are not necessarily bad things. I actually have a sense of hope for 2017. I think things will be hard on us, but we will see better days ahead. Believe it or not this is optimism you are reading, not my normal pessimistic musings. I think we are in for massive changes this coming year, and it may be a few changes for the better.

Or the world is going to end; however I doubt it.

Giving Up & Giving In.

I have made a decision.

After talking with my therapist, I have decided to give up on my disability claim.

Why, you ask?

Because, apparently,  I do not have the evidence to prove that I am disabled as far as hospitalizations, and medical records go. Especially since most doctors and facilities do not keep medical records past 5 years. My hearing has yet to be scheduled and is probably a year away. Plus, with the incoming GOP administration, I doubt that I could be approved anyway.

So, I am going back to work and looking for something that is preferably remote/telecommute so that I do not have a day’s worth of panic attacks; however I am willing to take whatever I can get.

So, the SSA wins.

Now, I am looking for a job and I have launched multiple applications out with my resume attached. Hopefully I will find something soon.

I have learned something though.

When you have a mental illness, don’t “Man-Up”, you give in to that shit. Go to the hospital, see a shrink, and get all the help you need. If it  all comes to a point where you cannot work after you bottled it up and you try to get assistance from the US Government, you are fucked; however if you seek treatment and have a shitload of medical records, then you may have a shot.

Hopefully, I can return to the workforce and not lose my fucking mind (But, if I do, I am getting help and starting a paper trail a mile wide).

Now, I have to get a haircut.

Back on Drugs.

Good News! I am seeing a psychiatrist and getting back on my meds and having a few changes done to my typical regiment. I am no longer on “rescue” anxiety meds but on a medication that is supposed to control my anxiety throughout the day. I am getting back on one of my mood stabilizers and I have a sleep-aid again. Soon I will be on my other mood stabilizer and things should be back to what I consider “normal”.

Bad News.I went from a “great” two or three week manic episode to hitting a brick fucking wall. I have been unstable (mood-wise), groggy, and just plain feeling like shit. Imagine drinking a lot of coffee or Red Bull and getting in your car to start going at 100 MPH (161 KPH) and suddenly just slamming on the brakes while downing a bottle of NyQuil. You skid, spin and flip the car multiple times while being extremely tired and sleepy. That’s as best that I can describe it.

Other than saying that it SUCKS BALLS!

The new anxiety medication makes me dream; which is something that I do not normally do. And not just dreams, but odd ones. Dreams that you wake up from and are questioning the fundamentals of life as you know it. Some I remember, some I do not, other than one word or scene from the dream sticking in my mind. I have had dreams about:

Lithuanian Fruit Bats.

Being in a shopping mall that is also a hospital, and a spaceship.

Being in a large building that changes/rearranges rooms & floors because it is alive.

My mother being a professional “Rascal” racer.

Being attacked by sharks.

Being in the soap opera “General Hospital” and knowing that it is a TV show.

If this keeps up I may start keeping a dream journal, just because drug induced dreams can be hilarious…except when they involve sharks. Fuck that and fuck sharks.

The shitty thing is that I have been getting easily annoyed and even filled with rage over nothing. Literally nothing. Like I will just be sitting there and suddenly I feel anger to a level that just makes me want to break shit. I have also been having a lot of “fight” anxiety attacks that have left me with just a feeling of rage and anger that I honestly do not like. I have been experiencing a lot of spontaneous laughter as well. It’s like someone else has the remote control to my brain and is just randomly switching through channels.

And this is only the first week.

Eventually I will be back on my medication at full dosage and things will be all good; however I can’t say that I didn’t enjoy being off of them and just being “crazy” for awhile. It felt amazing. Which reminded me of the real danger of being bipolar. You feel AMAZING when you are just hypomanic. You can do anything, and you have all of the energy and joy in the world. That is, until you hit a depressive episode and then the world is a vile place and just shitty or you have a full-blown manic episode and end up hurting yourself or getting into real trouble (like the kind that involves handcuffs and a taser) because you had “a great idea” that you just had to do at that moment.

Although I hate this feeling that I get when I have to get back on my medication, I know it’s good for me. I know what it feels like to be stable and even though being stable is “boring” it is also safe.

Safe is always a great place to be.