Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Follow Up

My grand plans to spend my Saturday getting ready for next week's AFED Charity Garage Sale went totally awry, resulting in me composing this on my new MacBook and wondering how in the world I'm going to recover financially from that (how can something so small be so expensive) and the brake job I got done in the morning, so I need to make up for lost time today, and I've promised to meet a friend to watch the Steelers battle the Titans (I so want to make a Clash of Titans joke here, but can't really think of one), so I will keep this short.  But, I have to say that I got a pretty strong reaction from many of my friends regarding my last post.  I wrote it in the heat of the moment, the situation having unfolded earlier that day at work.  A couple of days had to pass before I could step back enough to see the other side, and there is one. I am generally a little better at picking up on people's motivations for their behavior, even if I totally disagree with it.  Rarely am I so blind as I was initially in this case.  In fairness, I get what prompted the individual's outburst.

I should have realized earlier what was building and maybe been more sensitive to it and prevented it.  Here's the thing:  the week before last was hard on our little department.  Our boss worked diligently from home every day, but there was an increased pressure for each of us to step up our game a bit because she wasn't right there for immediate issues.  I won't delve into the structure there and how it centers the ability to handle certain things on one individual alone.  If, as my boss and I are both fond of saying, she gets hit by a bus, we're completely screwed.  There are things only she can and knows how to do.  That, particularly for me, is stressful.  I cannot stand being outside my element.  If anyone ever said I was a quick learner, then that would be why.  It's not my brain power, it's my stubborn inability to not understand what I am doing.  I completely did not understand what I was doing that week, having to dip into things I had no clue about.  The same was true for all of us.  Add that to the fact that the co-worker in question knew the man who passed away (they went to the same church for one thing), so she was grieving herself.  And, she was doing the flowers for a wedding and that funeral in addition to her full-time job.  She had her own pressures to handle.  Not only did I not recognize that, others failed to as well.  Another woman we work with, who is close to all of us, understood how hard the situation was for me and acknowledged that in front of my co-worker.  I think back on all of that week and understand she must have felt in the shadows - particularly my shadow - for days on end.  That's not a place she's comfortable being.  I should have seen it coming at the very least.  I did not.  I was completely blindsided, having been so wrapped up in my own reaction to the events that were unfolding, so my reaction was a strong one.  I don't think, a mother herself, she really wanted to belittle my experience, she just wanted to get some acknowledgment for her own grief and sacrifice.  I doubt she understood it quite on that level, she just felt resentment building and building until any little spark would cause it to explode.  The other thing I am generally better at recognizing about my fellow human beings is that when they lash out blindly like that, they are not really in touch with what is truly the matter.  I've done that; so, dear reader, most likely have you.  Emotions are funny things, they propel us.  Sometimes in wondrous directions, sometimes into brick walls.

I will go that far, but don't misunderstand how I still feel.  She is not the type who will apologize, she rarely believes she is wrong on such matters.  I highly doubt I would accept it if she did.  Therefore, I am even more motivated to get the hell out of here.  I want to surround myself with people who just accept me for who I am at the moment, instead of what I once was.   I want to be with total strangers who don't know the first thing about us and don't feel the need to walk on eggshells until they finally are so sick of it they resent us for it.  I want a life back.  This is just a holding pattern.

I guess more than any of that, I want to wake up and have the knowledge that this whole past 15 months was nothing more than a really long bad dream.  I have met some incredible people in the wake of all of this, and I still hope to turn our tragedy around to do something positive for the ED community, but, and I think they would understand me saying this, I would trade all of that away to have another chance to save Kelsey.  Since that can't happen, however, and I know it, the best I can do is to try and save the rest of my family, including myself.  That does not, I increasingly realize, involve working any longer than necessary with the individual in question.

1 comment:

  1. Nope. Sorry, can't accept it. Not acceptable - ever - to say something like that. Only an asshole would say something like that and an asshole like that would say something like that no matter what the circumstance. Which is why it doesn't surprise me when you say the person in question would not apologize - assholes like that never do. Jealous of people commiserating/empathizing with someone other than them - whoever she is, she needs to watch more Oprah.