Saturday, November 2, 2013

Voice From the Underworld

I get a bad rap at work for being strict with the kids and staff. I just don't understand why it's so difficult to follow the rules and be responsible (That mostly applies to the staff.) I don't yell or curse or belittle anyone no matter how much I want to at some moments (again directed at the staff.) I've only made two children cry in seven years and I wasn't even that mean. I tell them to be quiet and question them about what part of "be quiet," they don't understand. At the same time, I muster all of my patience when speaking to someone I don't necessarily have the time to deal with.  I take pride in my ability to stop an injured child from crying and even manage to make them laugh on occasion. I conjure up every ounce of goodness in me to speak in a calm, melodic and sometimes peppy tone of voice when more often than not, my internal voice sounds like something from the underworld. Perhaps I'm not doing so great at providing examples of what a sweet person I am. Although, I suppose if I wasn't a kind person I wouldn't even try to muster patience or conjure goodness and I would have many more crying children on my list.

I was once told that my day job appeared to be one of the more "glamorous" positions at the school. Let's rethink this.... I head the office in one of the top performing schools in the state. Excellence is demanded and anything less than perfect is harshly criticized. Be it one's outfit, report, table set-up, inability to be in two places at once, nothing is off limits. I am at the nerve center for the entire school: students, teachers, parents, staff, and district staff all come to me. I have to know everything and everyone. I have to supervise, coordinate, mediate, negotiate, direct, organize, decide, guess, hope and pray every day. Glamorous? Say that to me when I'm dry-heaving in the health office cleaning the mess of foul smells that have been tracked in all over the floor. You can use your imagination on that.

In the past five months I have had some exciting new developments at work. I literally have to pay thousands of dollars for two other people's mistakes (again why can't adults be responsible for themselves?) I was told that I don't stay at work long enough when I not only put in more than an 8 hour work day but, stay longer than my bosses. This while not being given a nickel of overtime or comp time! (Illegal much???) I've had the pleasure of being screamed at in front of a large group of coworkers because someone was in a bad mood. I have been stabbed in the back by a former coworker. I have the pleasure of being surrounded by a person or two who enjoy butting into other people's conversations, being lazy, and showing off their own stupidity. Said person/people also enjoy rewriting history, talking incessantly and insisting that Betty White was on the Gilmore Girls. ..Oh I almost forgot to mention the part about being sexually harassed by two employees and being accused of having an affair with another.

I come home from work physically and emotionally tired. Some of my personal relationships have become hot and cold (but mostly cold) which only adds fuel to the stress fire.The stress has become so much that despite my best efforts not to internalize it, I get physically sick. As much as I want to paint or work on my long list of projects, I can't. I'm too tired to put in the effort.

So yes, it feels incredibly awesome to be called a nazi, gestapo, liar and Carrie (yes, Pig's Blood Carrie.) I revel in the inappropriate behavior of coworkers, their ignorance and a sincere lack of respect by the higher ups.  Meanwhile, I am actually being much kinder than I ought to be at times.

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