seventhe: (Cock: GIANT COCKFISTING)

Based on this, let's see how we did in January... For context, in January, I:
* Dealt with furnace break and repair for about 5 days
* Babysat my niece from a Thursday night to the next Monday morning
* Went to Pittsburgh with my partner to marry two of my best friends
* Got knocked on my ass for 2 days by a surprise sinus infection
* went through an absolutely horrible HR-centric clusterfuck which ended in having to terminate a previously (technically) excellent employee, which was draining

So, as much as I may not want to admit it, I didn't have as much weekend time as I would have liked. But also, I let things slip.

Let's see....

  1. Health:

    • I didn't make it to the gym at all. I meant to, but it did not happen. I need to make myself a true workout plan and stick to it.
    • I did actually eat pretty healthy (except that weekend in Pittsburgh where I said my words over lemon drop shots and we signed their marriage license making sure there was a nice beer ring on the paper) with food at home - not packing lunches yet. Also, I did clean out my fridge and pantry.
    • not sure on weight -- I had lost 5 lb, and then this morning I'd gained 5 -- I did just put my NuvaRing back in, so it may be hormonal water holding.
    • My dr and I have added a medication to my fibromyalgia treatment package (so I am now on Cymbalta, Lyrica, buproprion, buspirone, Mobic, and trazodone) and I have adjusted my supplement regimen so that I'm focusing on boosting my immune system which is at what may be an all-time low. I had the med adjustment period, but I am hopeful.
  2. Writing: I'm at 1/52 for the prompts (should be at 5/52). I did write two pieces for prompt #1 though?

  3. Art: I'm at 14/365 (should be at 31/365). It actually surprises me that I've done 14, although probably only 25% of them have been anything above the layer of crap. However, it means I should be able to do >0 arts this year - maybe I can keep up with it?

  4. Home: I haven't done this well. Although I did get the fucking furnace fixed; it's great when I can surprise the repairman because shock, I'm an engineer, and while I wouldn't necessarily start pulling out wires inside my furnace panel, I certainly know what a draft inducer blower is, and that it should not have water in it

  5. Mental: I've done OK in letting hobbies be chores. With this new medication plan I'm going through the grieving process of believing I would ever be a healthy, able-bodied person again.

  6. Work: I am taking huge steps in making it clear where my line is between assisting on a project and completing action items for it. I also had the awful situation I outlined above, which will be saved for another post.

  7. F&F: I saw my niece, and went to Pittsburgh to visit (marry) friends - with my partner, and we had an absolutely fantastic time with each other. I did ask him for support when I needed it while going through the horrible HR fiasco, and we talked a bit about where boundaries might be.

Rather than setting firm goals for February, instead I want to just pick three areas to focus in:

  1. GET TO THE GYM. THERE'S ONE RIGHT UP THE ROAD IN A DIFFERENT BUILDING ON THE WORK CAMPUS.
  2. Uncluttering. Laundry / clothes to donate is a big area of shame right now.
  3. Make up some ground on my art & writing commitments.

[EDIT] ok so I really like Markdown but there's something funny about this version of it that's making me mad

seventhe: (Cock: GIANT COCKFISTING)
Yesterday's post is a great example of the trash show that is my life. I started with a great idea and plan, had half the thing written in my head, wanted to get all these great project & hobby ideas out. Then: Came home exhausted, had a bit too much wine, a bit too little sleep, tried to write it while having text chats and watching Netflix, and.... got about 25% of my ideas out then trailed off at the end when I fell asleep on the couch.

I'm a horrible garbage dump of execution. XD

This week I've been helping with some interviews at work - one of the fellow managers wants to bring in a summer intern to work in the labs, and since he's a very new manager HR asked me to help sit in as someone familiar with interviewing (oh god am I familiar with interviewing). Interviewing interns is an interesting experience -- they're so young!!! Our HR guy had to - casually AND NOT formally, kind of as a joke - remind me to not be my usual self (I am pretty tough in interviews) and instead I totally aged/embarrassed myself at the first one by asking whether she was in the new Chem-E building at UAkron. Turns out she's too young to remember the old building. There is no old building. She's a sophomore. Just shoot me now, hide me under a rock, I'm done. *SHAKES CANE*

Anyway. It's hard to be rough on them because they're literally tiny bb students and I was quite welcoming and generous in the interviews themselves - if nothing else it's helping them get experience - but some of them really just committed some of my "favorite" ... interview or resume no-nos and I had to stop myself really hard from turning an interview into a coaching session. (Example: one had work experience listed on his resume in long periods of time to represent the whole period he had worked that job, when it was in fact a part-time job he had worked in small increments. Listing it that way with no other information makes it look like you're trying to pass it off as a fulltime continuous employment, which it isn't, and even if it was an honest mistake rather than being malicious it then makes your resume confusing which is the last thing you want your resume to be! And that's just one. There was some hard-core "selling" on the resumes which could have just been word fodder for itty bbs with no real experience, but I still think there are far more valuable ways to use that real estate.)

It did get me thinking though. I have 11 years of hiring experience at this point and while I don't need any extra work in my life I do enjoy -- giving advice, coaching, that kind of thing. (Teaching, I guess, but on a small scale - I don't have the necessary give-a-fucks about general humanity to survive as a teacher. That job would defeat me.) I've been asked by Case before to be a part of panels for hiring, interviewing, etc. It may be something I want to get more involved in - set up some networking and see if I can start becoming a real resource. I like feeling like I'm helping young kids get jobs - especially if I could focus on ladies in STEM, not because other ladies/gents/others aren't deserving of help, but because that's where my experience is and where I could really shine.

I don't (yet) give back to my college as an alumni, mainly because I have mixed feelings about that whole system, but this would be a way of paying it back / forward that I would be happy to do.

See, tonight I can easily wrap this post up, because I took a 2-hour nap after work and have only had one glass of wine. :D
seventhe: (Snorlax: fuckin owns)
I'd like to reach through my Inbox and strangle someone.

A specific someone.

who is currently achieving new and incredible levels of shitballery
seventhe: (chocobo: hey bb)
I come home from work every day with the intention of working more. I realize this sounds dangerously pathetic or pathetically dangerous - choose one! - but it's the way I get myself out the door: go home, just bring this one thing, NOT EVERYTHING, just this one thing; working from home is much more comfortable and productive than being in the office anyway, you can have no pants on and cats get in your lap and there is always wine and music and more comfortable chairs and your wife the hot pad! don't you love your wife? DON'T YOU LOVE YOUR WIFE SEVENTHE DON'T YOU

it's a fine compromise that I am actually more than willing to make: the workload never stops, but it's much nicer working from home, PLUS it's much nicer to come home and be able to focus and do a much better job on something. it's nice to come home to an hour of catching up on email, or 45 minutes of pulling data into a report: I don't work all night; it's just small individual tasks I can get done in a low-key and helpful way.

But lately. BUT LATELY: lately, I come home and my brain just won't focus on the work. I have this report about all of the kerfuddlefuckery that has taken my plant down for four weeks already that the CEO asked me to write and I am all yes sir please let me hand-deliver this horrible news to your office, shall I seal it in my blood now or later like I actually do want to write this report and show what we are doing, what we are fixing, what we are facing - what the dumb godsbefucked people before me left to us, what I have sacrificed the last fucking six weeks to defeating which is like running a thousand goddamn marathons all at once on three hours of shitty sleep because I have been up at night worrying about my plant and my people because everything is goddamn fucked right now and -- and anyway, I want to write this report. But I get home and I open it and my brain gives this long-ass, horrible groan-sigh noise just like : reeeeeeeally, Sev, we are going to do this?

I am not going that way. No.


I'm trying, I want to, I'm in a comfy chair with the laptop on my lap right now. Come on, fucker. I just need an hour of your energy and we'll be ok.
seventhe: (SAZH)
...but I am, in fact, still here.

The latest wrench thrown into my plans to finally get my shit under control and become the Queen of Slack Ass Island is not a wrench at all, it's a beautiful exciting bunch of daisies: I have a niece. My brother and sister-in-law welcomed adorable bitty (and I mean it, super bitty, so tiny we were concerned) JA in the middle of October. The family all gathered for the birth, and since then we've been staggering vacation days to pitch in and help since newborns are, frankly, awful. Yeah the miracle of birth babies are a gift bundle of joy blah blah blah: newborns are awful. I said it and having done my share of screaming nights already I refuse to take it back. Don't get me wrong, I already love her like the goddamn sun, but yo gurl u r a handful.

Between the job that just won't quit!!!, a house that needs some TLC before the winter, and a suddenly increased travel schedule, I am (still) somewhat stressed. I had to take a leave of absence from DOINK, which makes me pretty sad, but I just can't handle it on top of everything and it wasn't really fair to the team. I've started taking work home on the weekends. I know it's a horrible habit to get into, but I just need to get caught up / stay on target / get ahead with a couple things before the year ends to keep my own sanity. I'm not doing it for the company (directly); I'm doing it for me. It is a sad state of affairs when doing work on a Sunday is the less stressful option but that's where I am right now, the Sad Captain of the SS Overworked, Angry, and Optionless.

I am - finally - learning how to work with my body and my schedule and my stress level, probably because I am at the point where I am being forced to adapt or die. I have become 90% hermit, which does make me sad but that recharge time is what keeps me alive so while I'm sad I'm not sorry about it; weekends where I don't have to leave the house and can spend a good portion of my time alternating housework and relaxing things are literally the only way I can face Monday mornings (whether it's work or adorable screaming niece). I've discovered that I have absolutely no energy when I get home from work, but I've also discovered that if I am smart - feed myself, crash on the couch for an hour or two with some episodes of Bones or Criminal Minds, decompress and relax - I recharge enough to get one or two small productive things done before it's time for bed. This has had much better results than the times I've tried to get things done immediately after getting home to "not lose momentum" and ended up in pain, miserable, and ineffective.

I am not yet sure whether this method will apply to working out as well; every week I tell myself I'm going to get back to the gym (which I'm still merrily paying for) and/or do something, but every week hurts. This week we've been back to stabbing knives between my spine and shoulder blades, which is a sensation I haven't missed. I'm pretty sure my body's serving me repercussions from a weekend full of raking, hours upon hours of leaf blowing, and a final mow before the snow comes (which may be today) -- I like working on my yard but I guess I need to be more on-the-ball and spread the work out better, because piling it all into three days means I can't turn my head for a week. Okay. Message received, you asshole.

Anyway, I do hope to get back into a workout schedule. I am thinking of signing up for some workout classes - not only because I think having a schedule will help me go, but also because having a schedule will help me leave work close to on time :/

I am also seeing a rheumatologist the first week in December to try to get some more helpful drugs and see how else I can deal with these weeks where my entire body just feels inflamed, on fire, sore and tender and weak.

And now, another meeting. Afters I may go up and down the hall and see if I can pay anyone $20 to poke repeatedly at my neck for fifteen minutes.
seventhe: (Cats: I LIKE THEM)
You may have noticed I seem to have vanished off of the map. This is because my new job is absolutely batshit fucking crazy. I think I've only posted like three times in all of July?, and I send far fewer text- and email- based daily communications than I used to (it's funny how long my phone battery lasts when I am not using it!), and this is because my new job is absolutely batshit fucking crazy.

There are days my employees catch me before I have even entered the building; I swear to god they're timing their smoke breaks since they know I pull in at 7:55am every morning, because they flag me down walking from my car to the door with whatever the day's update is. There are days I don't log into my own computer until 10; there are days I don't start my own actual work day until 4-5pm when everything else has calmed down. There have been evenings I am there until 6, 6:30 pm; there are nights I bring work home (tonight being one of them). There have been absolutely zero days where I leave at 4:45pm like I am supposed to. I use my mobile so much for work the company has started subsidizing it.

Did I mention things are absolutely batshit fucking crazy?

I have no time for anything anymore. I'm basically now working the same 10-hr days I was working beforehand, with added bonus 8+ days on Fridays. Becky is joking that I didn't actually get a raise, I'm now just being paid for epic overtime; it's actually truer than it should be.

It's a common joke among the management team (who I think I shall nickname after summons, because it pleases me to think of us all as a team of eidolons), because on those days where shit has been flying off the fan at intense and disastrous rates and we don't sit down at our own desks actually alone until 4:30pm it's actually nice to stay until 6:00pm because we don't know what's going to happen tomorrow but it's quiet now and we can focus. Ditto on Fridays; Fridays have become a blessing, the one day a week I know I will be minimally interrupted and can make a reasonable attempt to churn through all of the work I meant to do during the week and was pulled away from: 40 hours in one 8hr day, that's doable, right. Siren (the manager focused more on products and projects) and I mourn the loss of our ability to tell everyone to fuck off (Siren is also new to her position) and complain about the intense upkeep we need to do to stay targeted on our underperformers; Golem (the manager focused more on mechanical aspects) and I are already planning late-night office pizza parties as we are forced into a software update we weren't consulted on and weren't a part of but are still expected to launch into our maintenance program by some ridiculously unwieldy date like September. I am lucky to be surrounded by amazing people who understand and desperately want me to succeed (although in Golem's case I think that is mainly so that he can stop working on Saturdays); I adore them immensely, even as we all joke about using and abusing each other. (I, as Operations, am the cross-sectional point where Siren's research & development & troubleshooting projects intersect with Golem's preventative maintenance & plant improvement work; this makes my life difficult but also means that they both have to be nice to me, ha.)

I am overwhelmingly, bizzarely, incomprehensibly in love with this job.

This is what I was made for. I have already, after a month-and-change: dealt with a problem underperforming employee in a way that promises to either make progress or GTFO after basically 20 years of experience and 5+ years of not seeming able to do the job; sent nastygram after nastygram until the two worst communicators in the plant specifically come to me to let me know what they are doing before anyone else even knows; solved scheduling mishaps; yelled at the EPA; called our safety director's work stupid and dumb in the same meeting (although that was inadvertant and accidental), to her face (which I realize is tactless; here's the fucks I give, because incompetence is the match that lights this stubborn Taurean fire); defended my own employees against attacks and slander and bullshit they shouldn't have to put up with from other people and been specifically thanked for doing so; learnt how to buy things within our online file management system and promptly spent $300 on hard hats to play with; improved the attitude of a supervisor who has been a negative vendetta-hound for 8+ years; redone the old lab where I used to sit into what will be usable office cubicles (although I can't take full credit for that one); made my boss say the phrase "you are right, he/she/that is fucking clueless" half a dozen times; made my boss either grin maniacally or put his head down when I walk into his office; made my boss regret his decision to hire me probably four hundred times; made people actually run from me; made changes, made improvements, made an impact. I've revamped systems and redone OPSs and made demands of our alarm management system that no one has made until now. I've let out my inner asshole, my inner control freak, my inner perfectionist: they're all running around rampant making decisions and giving orders and frightening bystanders everywhere. I'm not sorry; I was not hired into this position to be good and play along.

I am absolutely loving it which is good because right now this is my only life, my highest priority, the shit I eat and breathe.

It will not last forever. I will not last forever in this: canceling PT because I have to stay until 6 because there's work due tomorrow, not scheduling doctor appointments because I don't have the time, not working on my thesis because fuck more work; this level of intensity will eventually fade as all of the plant becomes used to this position's existence and my presence. I will burn out, the initial activation energy will be met, the workload will become manageable even if I have to light half of it on fire. It's not forever.

But right now all things Sev are absolutely batshit fucking crazy, so please forgive me if I take a while to reply to an email or respond to a comment or do anything I have told you I would do because I am running on fumes and adrenaline and caffeine and stubbornness at the mo.



HOW ARE YOU ALL
seventhe: trowasfacewhen.com (Trowa: OH NO)
  • I am still in love with my sleeping pills. I've discovered through some trial and error that trazodone has a very narrow window of sleeping -- so my usual "get in bed and read/play games/whatever for 45 minutes" method does not work. Once I take that pill I've got 5-10 mins tops and if I get caught up and read through that drowsy couple minutes, I'm back to my usual looonnnnn-n-ngg-g-ggg ass falling-asleep time. Trazodone is apparently a picky mistress. I forgive it its quirks because it is so good to me.

  • I have solved my shorts dilemma - a shorts dilemma I may not have mentioned here; I hate shorts. Absolutely despise them. All ladies shorts I've tried - and I have tried quite a few - just don't fit right, don't look right on my body, make me feel many levels of uncomfortable: it isn't just an issue of how I look and feel while wearing them, uncomfortable in the sense ofoh god I look ridiculous, most are actually legitimately uncomfortable -- like help I cannot bend over, also when I sit down my thighs bulge at angles I didn't think skin could do and my ass sticks to what I am sitting on and also did I mention I cannot really move at all and I feel sweaty and sticky?. The problem is mainly that shorts are tight, and my thighs are ungracefully still built as if I'm running half marathons - even if that muscle has been replaced with pudding - and no matter what length the shorts feel like they are as tight as saran wrap and my legs look like sausages. I swear to god I have tried every style out there in the stores and I just went to wearing maxi skirts made out of the kind of fabric that feels like you're just wearing pajama bottoms even though you look ~fancy~.

    --- BUT THEN I FOUND THE ANSWER, and it is: DUDE SHORTS. They are comfortable as legitimate fuck, exactly the feel and convenience I was wanting, and since my "sense of style" is already kind of like "hobo bum that can't match things" anyway, they go with everything I have. I am legit so happy about these shorts I am blogging about them. Don't make fun. THEY ARE SO COMFORTABLE. I AM SO HAPPY. Today I was actually a normal temperature in the summer because I wasn't wearing jeans. HOW DID I NOT FIND THIS SOONER.

  • I have a lot to say about the new job but it would take up so much time. I have been there late 2/4 nights this week. I had to take Friday off because I was just so fucking behind on everything that I needed a day to lie in bed and then do four loads of laundry. (This is not a joke.) On Wednesday we had a massive storm front move through that flooded out a giant portion of the tank farm - complete with tornado warnings! We evacuated! - this is seriously the kind of thing that makes old hands at the job stress and die, and I had been there all of ten fucking days.

    I am exhausted. But I freaking love the job so far. It is -- it is a breath of fresh air to be actually doing things that will help people, even if they are so far the small things - "low hanging fruit" - and I'm probably going to feel underwater for the next three months before I get the hang of it all. I love the job; and I hate that I love it, because it is very tiring and all-encompassing. I get emails at 1am -- and sometimes I answer them when I get up to pee. But so far this was the right decision. I will not say a GOOD decision because I am so tired and burnt out on people I had to take a vacation day to wash my unmentionables -- but it was the right decision.

  • I'm now out of energy on this entry. Whoops. More later, then.

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