Another Tough Day

TW: Suicide, Self Harm, vomiting.

Today has been a tough day for me, but let me go back to Friday first before I get to today.

Friday afternoon I went with mum and dad (step) to go and get a CT scan.  While there my dad had an X-ray on his knee (he needed one anyway and they said drop in when you are free for this).  The reason for my mums CT scan was a shadow across her chest which came up in another scan.  They have more or less written off Lung Cancer (thankfully) but it was a nervous time for us all, especially so close to Christmas time.

After the scan I went home and got ready to my work Christmas Do.  This had been weeks in planning by the work teams, but I was not going to go.  It was only 48 hours before that I ended up being convinced to go, after a few people dropping out and several people haranguing me to do so.   I met my colleagues at the pub, had a few drinks beforehand with them, and then we went onto the venue, where the company card was behind the bar and even more drinks were had.

All said, I left at around quarter past midnight, well socially lubricated, having danced most of the night and had a great time all in all.  I got home by Uber, and was only sick once from all the Jack and Coke I had, the acid was brutal though.

That same day (Friday) I also found out that my colleagues sister had tried to kill herself.  She had taken medication, slashed her wrists and was found somewhere by a stranger who took her to hospital.  The same girl also has recently found out that her fathers new partner (to be wife) has skin cancer and had to have a large portion of her leg removed.  She told me these things and I tried to support her and talk to her where I can, but I know that she has a strong support structure to help her out when she needs it.

Back to Saturday I did not do very much at the weekend, being that I was hungover and in truth I like to not do much on the weekends because I work all the time during the week and want to relax.  Which is a nice transition into today.

Today I got back to work and found out that while I was off “Bombshell Friday” had struck again.  Fridays are the day where something comes out where there is a problem and there is a scrabble to try and resolve it, but more often than not it can’t be done immediately and so there is a chaotic start to the week which can potentially drag on weeks or months depending on the issue.  Guess what, this time it was my fault.

I made a mistake, the mistake came back to bite me, and now I had to work to resolve it.  Unfortunately this mistake is on a project that I have made mistakes on previously, which only fed into making me feel worse about the issue.  I have spent the whole day trying to fix the issue, and speaking to the relevant internal teams and externally affected individuals to get things back on track.  It is not a one day fix, but it has ended up consuming my time, on something I am a little lost in trying to resolve and struggling with.

That word, struggling, is basically what is I feel at work.  I speak for myself here, but I know that the other people on my team feel it, but we are all trying to balance too many jobs.  I feel I am doing this the worst out of everyone as I keep having to resolve issues and fix things as part of the work I am doing, and they should have been spotted a long time ago but weren’t.  Before you ask who should have spotted them, I should have.

I spoke to one of my colleagues about the fact I am going to call a meeting with my manager, because I am doing too much.  Last year I had one job, and one job only at this time of year.  This year I am trying to juggle 3 and smattering of smaller jobs.  I feel like I have too much work to do, and because of this I am letting things slip.  Too many jobs means I am making mistakes in all three of them, and there is just too much for me to handle in one go.  When discussing how many issues we should be dealing with at a time, it was mentioned in someones previous job they handled 2 each maximum.  My team is 4FT and 1 PT, and we currently dealing with 76.  That is just not OK.

Work is really dragging me down mentally, because I don’t stop thinking about it.  I think about it when I wake up, I dream about it, I am even writing about it now (for good reason, I can justify this).  I work 8-6 Monday to Friday, but this has been known to be until 7 and come in at the weekend, pushing my hours to high 40s or 50s at bad times.  Now for some, that is not a big deal; your doctors and lawyers and nurses of the world, but for someone paid my level, this is not great.  I am working those hours to try and get everything done, and then it turns out that I still cant.  Between April and the end of November this year it worked out that I have done 270 hours of overtime that I billed for.  That works out at 38.5 hours per month, which to me doesnt seem so terrible, but it kinda is.  Every month I work the equivalent of 1 FT employee for a week (standard contract is 35 hours PW).

I am struggling to keep up with all of this, and it is making me more and more stressed.  Add on top my friends who I am helping out (the one above, another was at a funeral today who I was trying to support, my family, and the whole real dad and his partner situation which I don’t know if I have talked about) and I am feeling like there is just too much going on.

Circling back, I wanted to tell my manager that I would like to have some of the work taken off my plate, because I am struggling to cope with all of it.  I even wanted to tell him to take away the promotion that I have had, because if I am a lower level, then they can’t make me do the things that they are asking at the moment.  I ran this past my colleague and he agreed that we all do too much, but that I shouldn’t give the company the opportunity to pay me less.  The work would still be the same, and in his opinion (he has 8 years experience on me) the work we are doing alot of the time should not be signed off by someone of our level, but rather someone one or two levels above us.

Why don’t I change position?  I have thought about it and looked and applied in some cases, but in truth every specification I read I don’t feel I even come close to being able to do the things they say.  Christ, I read my own job specification online and feel like I can’t do the things on that.  A friend on another team has suggested I go for a junior coding position on her team and has put my name forward for the potential role (depending on the budget) next year, but even that I feel I will be bad at.

I know I have problems with feeling inadequate (Insert Coach Carter Speech here (which is amazing by the way)), but I just feel confused and not good enough and like every single day I am just battling to keep my head afloat at work.  Today was an 8-6 and quite frankly I am sure that tomorrow will be the same and it is Christmas Eve.

If I didn’t need the money so badly I would take a job where I could just turn off and have minimum responsibilities.  That would be the dream right now, but the reality is I have to have money to help my family, to try and move out of my parents home and to try and make something of myself.  I am 30 years old, I should not be living here, but that’s a whole other rant which ends up in another hole altogether.

It has been a long time since I wrote this much in one post, or even in one go at all.  This is really going back to the streams of consciousness recollection that this blog was founded on over 5 years ago, and I have just broken 1500 words to get to this point.  In truth, the people who used to read this years ago no longer do, and anyone who stumbles across this now will view this as a dated form of expression in a world of YouTube and short form, fast consumption content.  I just find this cathartic and getting this out of my head will hopefully make it easier to process and hopefully mean I can sleep and tackle tomorrow in a healthier and more balanced way.

I hope that I do not fall into the “likes and views are verification of my self worth” hole that I used to have, because I do know I do that sometimes, checking my stats.  Truthfully, if I have more than 2 views a day I think I am doing amazingly.  I think I got one of those notifications that my blog was “on fire” when it hit 30 in a day.  How pathetic really, but if anyone has ready this far (highly doubtful) then I commend you on reading the ramblings of an idiot like me.

I think it is time for me to stop now and watch some Brooklyn 99 or something light hearted to keep me distracted and away from sliding further down.  I think carrying on with The Witcher (which is brilliant so far) would be bad because it has some darker themes.  Same applies to most of the shows I would like to watch now, so I will stick to this for now and see how I feel.

To anyone who has read this far, thank you.  For Netty, thank you once again for being a chronicle of my mental state, for listening to my ramblings and for continuing to be a source of knowledge, pain and growth.

PL&H

MMS

Stressing Out

I am pushing my girlfriend away.  Yesterday we ended on a bad note and I didn’t bother to reply to her text message where she finally saw that I am actually an arsehole at times.  Today she didn’t text me all day and when she did in the evening when I theoretically would have finished work on a normal day I was short, and told her I am going to stop talking to her before I snap at her.  It wasn’t personal, it is just I knew I would.    I could almost guarantee it.

—//—

I finally sat down with my stepfather after giving him another £500 to find out what is going on with the home finances.  I looked at his income and my mothers, as well as mine, the outgoings which we could not push and were fixed every month like mortgages and insurance, and the variable costs. My finance brain went in and my step dad was surprised at how I approached everything in the way that I did.  I told him in no uncertain terms that I have handed over well over £3000 in the last 4 months, and that I need to know how deep a hole we are in, and what can be done so that moving forward that can make it better.  Effectively, I need to cut my spending down and give them more.

—//—

I have got my brother a job at the place I work.  It is a temp contract and he only has 5.5 hrs, but I will be flexing him up to at least 20 whenever I can.  I found out he has been giving my parents money as well.  He shouldn’t be.  He is studying and that should be his focus, not what is going on here.

—//—

Today at work I had the head of retail operations in.  He is one of the most influential people in the company.  If I had to hear my deputy manager (who I went and had dinner with the night before and she was lovely) tell one more story about how wonderful she is, or how well traveled or spiritual she is I was going to take the stapler and puncture my carotid artery.  She was absolutely doing my nut.  My store manager is already good friends with him so she didn’t need to impress, and I concentrated more on my job than on impressing him, so that meant I was barely noticed.  Not good for networking, but great for…well fuck all other than proving I am a reasonable supervisor.  Completed nothing of note whatsoever today, and it ended up being a 09:00-20:00 day, with my leaving home at 08:00 and returning at 21:15.  To say I am fucking shattered is an understatement.

MMS

Girls Liking Dickheads

This evening I recieved an impromptu invitation to go out for a drink with my girlfriend and her two best friends (one male, one female FYI).  I said sure, why not and met up with them.  We sat in a pub and all had non alcoholic drinks as three of us had work in the morning and the other girl had to drive.

The drinks were a little jilted and I played two truths and a lie with the other girl, while conversations were held by the others and by different groups.  It was an alright night, but it is what happened as we were walking away to end our evening which annoyed me.

So The Lady and I were walking together as she was getting a lift home and we walk past a club where she points out the guy her best friend is sleeping with.  His baseball cap wearing, do-rag sporting, big chain wearing ugly self did not impress me at all.  What impressed me less is he is early to mid thirties and sleeping with a 22 year old woman.  Did I also mention he is a DJ, so I won’t even start on how there are plenty of stereotypes which is fulfills.

She likes him because of his confidence and he is older, even if he treats her badly, knows she is not the only girl he is screwing and quite frankly there is nothing about him that I find remotely impressive.  That said, she is a big girl so she can make her own decisions.  I just fail to completely understand why women go for arseholes like him.  I have heard it is the confidence, or maybe, it is because he is a “musician” or maybe it is because he is black so she likes her chocolate dark rather than milk or white, but I really cannot see what the attraction is.  I realise this isn’t a very coherent argument, but  for once words are failing me.

As I stood there while he interacted with the two friends of the Lady, he then proceeded to call her a Granny for going home early.  If I wasn’t impressed before, I certainly wasn’t now.  I didn’t bother introducing myself, nor smiling at him and he just stared at me while he talked to the others.  I don’t need to like or impress this guy who I met all of 48 seconds.  I just get a bad vibe off him and think her friend can do so much better than him.

Wow, it is obvious I haven’t written in a while, this is an utterly terrible post.  No coherency or logic whatsoever.  Ah well.  I guess I will just have to live with that.

MMS

2008

The year was 2008,
My ponytailed and bearded face gave way to a goatee and shaved head,
My puppy fat melted and under it sinewy yet strong muscles formed,
My heart got broken after three and a half years of bliss,
I found solace in the bottom of a bottle,
I threw away a year of education and failed at university,
I let apathetic anger consume me,
I slept late, I drank early, I phased out constantly,
But at least I wasn’t partaking in other vices,
Those I had stopped at least,
But I found true friends,
I found my body’s limits,
I found a girl who amazed me, and would later become my second love,
I lost family by blood, but I gained family by trust,
I gave up sex and sexual thoughts,
Which only made the pole girls make my life very hard,
I grew from a boy,
But not a man yet,
I stumbled, I struggled,
I crawled back, I conquered,
I started to get back to being me,
All in 2008,
Aged 19.

—//—

Thanks to my darling Tis for inspiring me to write this. Her and her Husband are such inspirations. They show how  strength and love overcome anything that may be put in their way. I tip my hat to you both.

PL&H

MMS

The Lady and I

While were were FWB this song would be on a lot around us in the car or whenever we happened to be anywhere where music was played.  It was an inappropriate song so have for the situation we were in, but every time I hear this song I think of her.  Especially this version, because it is more upbeat than the original.

I have spent the last three nights with her, which included a film evening, a walk in the park, some shopping and a considerable amount of unclothed time.  It was really great to talk to her and just relax.  One of the films we watched was Fight Club as she had never seen it before.  I felt the need to educate her on it.  She then asked me some questions and I answered with regards to my past and how my brain used to work when I have been in darker mind frames.  She asked if I knew people who had dealt with these kind of issues and if my own experience had been helpful.  Yes and no was my response.

I dealt with a fair bit of it before my head went a little crazy, but I dealt with less of it as I went past it myself.  Either way I know more about myself from it, as well as a better understanding of how to help people who may be suffering.

I am happy.  I may feel isolated at work at times, I may feel like I am struggling with some of my family stuff.  I may even feel like money is tighter than usual and I need one solid month where I do not need to give my family money to get myself back on track.  However I feel pretty good with The Lady.  That is positive enough for me right now.

PL&H

MMS

Mixed Feeling Songs

These are just four of the songs that when I hear them with a group I am ok, but when I am along they make me feel uncomfortable and sad.  I have to change the tracks.  It makes me think of the passing of time, how things are moving on and it makes me miss the past.

I know that sounds stupid, I know I should be happy to be leaving those bad things behind and looking at the positive future which I am moving towards, however I am a nostalgic person.  I hold onto my memories as no matter what, no one can take these from me.  They are mine.  I write to forget, but I write to chronicle and remember also.  This is me doing that right now

MMS

Resolution Reached

In my last post Conflicted Alligences I wrote about how I was not sure how I would deal with The Marine and The RAF Guy with regards to talking to them about A.  I wrote that on the 28th of August and on the 31st I went and saw A and sat her down.

She was convinced that I was going to break things off, that because I had been so far out of contact that I wanted to end things.  I went in the opposite direction and the relief written across her face was wonderful.   I had no intention of hurng her, and I wanted her to be happy, just as I was spending time with her.  That night I didn’t say “will you go out with me” or “will you be my girlfriend” because that seems to childish.  I simply asked her

“Would you like to take this to a more serious level? Me and you, together.”

She reacted well.  Now came the harder part, telling the guys.

I was going their way anyway the following day, so I told them I would be dropping by and I had some stuff I wanted to talk to them about.  They were worried I had got into trouble or something serious was about to go down, but I reassured them that nothing was bad and that I just needed to tell them something which was better face to face.

When I told them what was going on they both laughed.  Then they realised I was serious.  I explained to them how she balances me out and I have no idea how.  I can’t always write around her, but I can think better with her around.  They both said to me that as long as I am happy, that is all that matters and they are happy for me and her.  I was elated.  I told them this changes nothing between us as I wanted things to be exactly the same.  They did as ten minutes later they were bitching about her, but now saying I should shag her to make sure they got the right holidays and make sure she gets them the good shifts.  I laughed and they did too.  They may not like her a great deal, but they respect that she makes me happier and more balanced, so for that they will not go nuts at her.

So they know, and my close friends know. and that is about it.  No one at work knows, my parents have a rough idea and that is about it.  It is a good start.

Sunday 31st August 2014 at around 21:00 is when I made a change in my life.  I went from being single to being in a relationship.  Let’s see how this works out.

MMS

Conflicted Allegiances

So dating with the FWB was going really well.  I say FWB, I suppose I shouldn’t call her that anymore.  I will go with A.  A and I have been on three dates, and we never slept with each other after a date until the third one.  We did sleep together in between dates though so that kind of negates the whole thing I would say.

Here comes the dilemma.  The Marine and The RAF Guy work for her.  She is their manager and they do not like her.  They think she is ditsy, incompetent, lacking in managerial experience, naive and immature.  They come to me and bitch and moan about her.  The reason they come to me is because I am their friend, but also because they know I will try and look at the situation objectively and see why she has acted in that way from an outside perspective, as well as play Devils Advocate.

Now I went with both of these guys to Belgium and had one of the best times of my life, and we are planning to go somewhere else really soon.  I think that if I told them that I am dating, and possibly going to get into a relationship with their boss, would destroy the trust they have in me, as well as our friendship.

Would they just be happy for me if I told them and just let it all slide? I am doubtful.  The ideal situation would be either for her to leave there and go to another store/new job (unlikely) or them to leave and work elsewhere (much more likely).  That would resolve all of those issues, but they will not be happening anytime soon at this rate.

I want to tell them, but I am scared of the consequences.  For now I have cooled it off with A.  I haven’t talked to her as much and I haven’t seen her in a few days, where I was seeing her minimum twice a week.  I have said I have stuff going on an I need to think, and I do need to think.  What do you think Netty?

PL&H

MMS

Date With FWB??!?

A couple of days ago the FWB and I woke up all snuggled and I said to her that this was a little intimate. She then came out and told me that she was falling for me. Her best friend always knew when she had seen me, she got little butterflies when I texted and she enjoyed spending time with me.

Uh oh.

Now, I like her as a FWB, and I could see myself possibly liking her in the future as something more, but I would need to test this. After some more talking we got ready and headed out to work separately. I said to her she needed to think what to do next and so did I. I don’t want to hurt her as I am not that kind of guy, however I do like that I am getting some regularly.

I spent the whole day at work thinking about it. It was a real distraction I tell you. I did my job but I was processing in the back of my mind the entire time. What would her friends think? What would mine think? The FWB is the RAF guy and the Marines boss, would that affect our relationship? Would that make them lose trust me in me? What would my friends think of my situation? Eventually I came to a conclusion to the issue at hand.

We both have chemistry in bed, that much is obvious. We also know we work next to each other well in a professional sense. We no longer work in close proximity which makes that less awkward. What I need to know is will we work on a relationship and friend level. So how about we go on a couple of dates, get to know each other with clothes on and not in bed or wherever and see if we are compatible that way.

Unbeknownst to me, he best friend had had the same idea and told her that. So that is what we have done. Yesterday, I took her out on a date.

I chose the place, and we got a train down to the beach. We wandered around the town and talked and I said there looked like loads of places I would like to try, and she remembers a burger place which she wanted to go to from her last visit here. So, we went to a burger diner, which was really awesome. We both got massive burgers and I had the biggest milkshake you have ever seen. This thing was massive, and they gave me the steel cannister with more in so I could top it up. The girl eats faster than me it is quite impressive I have no idea where she puts it all, but I am impressed.

I paid for lunch, on the proviso that she pays for dessert later, which was doughnuts on the beach. We chilled out and relaxed and talked about life and stuff, and lay on the beach while she lay on my chest. It was a gorgeous day out so perfect weather for that kind of behaviour. When we wandered into town I needed to buy some new shoes as the ones I was wearing were my brothers, and though they looked good, after an hour of wearing them it came to be that they were actually too small. So in another first I bought my first pair of converse!  White hi tops and they are super comfy. She also bought a pair of super high heels. She has a thing for high heels. Some of them in question, but others look hot. These ones weren’t bad but they were at least four inches which made her taller than me, but they still looked good so who cares. Plus, who am I to dictate her choice in clothes!!

We had a couple of little kisses and we discussed how I should come back to hers after and we could nap as well has sort out her wardrobes (yes more than one) so it would free up some space as she needed it. As we approached home on the train I asked her if she wanted me to come over and she said yes. I was rather happy about this turn of events. When we got outside though I said to her

Maybe it would be better if I didn’t. You know what will happen if we are together in your house, and you want to not do anything on this date, so it’s probably best I don’t come back. Regardless of how much we both want stuff to happen.

She could see I was right and agreed. I gave her a kiss on the lips and a hug goodbye then we walked in opposite directions back to out respective homes. We texted later on in the evening saying it went well and now we need to plan a second one. I’m thinking dinner somewhere. We have done a day out, let’s do dinner, then third date do dinner in… Because we all know what happened after the third date…. Aww yeah.

I know, I am doing this all backwards, I’m dating my FWB. I’ve gone from regular sex to none and spending money in dinner to get a kiss. How amusing, but this might be the start of something. Maybe.

Let’s see how this all goes.

MMS