I could do without days like today. I have a thyroid condition that every now and then demands a medicine adjustment in order to keep me from slipping into a coma. Not literally, of course, but oh how tired I feel. It drags me down in the daytime, and unfortunately that corresponds with my working hours. Turns out a few people would rather not tap me on the shoulder and find out why I was sawing logs in front of a computer the past two days. Instead they relayed this juicy observation to a supervisor, who then relayed it to my supervisor. Ugh.
Enter a phone call today from my supervisor. Thank God she values me as an employee and figured it was medically related. Enter signing a “verbal counseling form”, and enter a “p.s.” in an email that the onsite supervisor would like my supervisor to pass on to me that sneakers aren’t allowed during jeans week for the holidays, only jeans. I had no idea any supervisor recognized what shoes I wear. I hardly think anyone recognizes my face. You know, truly recognize. Like acceptance, acknowledgement, not mere visual recognition.
Welcome to the life of an outsourced employee. You are an outsider if you are outsourced. You aren’t part of the workplace culture, despite the “hellos” and “how are yous” that are likely just obligatory as you pass in the hall to the bathroom or break room. It’s hard being an “unknown” in a place where people seem to know each other to the point of having relationships outside of the workplace.
It makes me think of quotes from the German theologian Jurgen Moltmann, or from Mother Teresa, which basically state that acceptance is the air we breath and without it we wither and fade, that indifference is society’s greatest impoverishment and not poverty itself.
But these difficult things I cannot change. I can’t look pretty, I can’t lose weight fast enough, I can’t afford snazzy, fashionable professional attire to be whatever it is that people are drawn to enough to welcome one into the inner circle. I can change them no more than I can change the unknown metabolic imbalance tugging like a pit bull at the cords of my consciousness despite a hefty 3-cup-a-day coffee regimen, which by the way would normally have me twitching like an alleyway geeker waiting in line to buy the next fix.
So once I get home, feeling a greater exhaustion born of the stress of having my job placed in a more precarious situation, I sit down at the computer and seek some kind of reprieve from the hardness of not just a day, but a week, a month, a year, three to four years. Hardness all around, rocks and hard places, jagged little edges of piercing circumstances that I have to dance around, without sneakers mind you. Sneakers are a no-no.
Enter soft kitty, who daily has been the barrier between me and a keyboard since living in my temporary apartment. Warm cuddle bug Timba curls up against my chest and rests. His soft fur, warm body, and moderate motor humming away soothe and comfort me. His unconditional affection for me, his desire to be close and near and intimate semi-wash away the hardness and coldness of circumstance and indifference.
It reminds me of quotes from Jesus … “come to me and I will give you rest, all you who are weary and heavy laden.” It reminds me of Jesus himself sleeping through a hurricane strength storm, sawing his own logs on a pillow while his disciple pals are freaking out on the deck above. I wonder if Jesus snored? Was it an imperfection from which he was spared, or was it the mother of all snores being that he was also fully God? I’m thinking the former, but then again, I doubt people would bother recording the magnitude of a Jesus snore seeing as he had so many more worthy things to be recorded. “Cut me some slack, guys, when I’m gone and you’re writing all this down. Just, uh, tell them that it was the stone rolling away. Remember that, stone rolling away, not snoring to the break of day. K?”
With that little rhetorical question out there, it’s time for me to find my own pillow. It’s not a big storm outside, but the drizzle saps me nonetheless. At least I have my two soft kitties to buffer the day and accept me while I read for a little while.