Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Reaction Is Not Always Equal. Or Opposite.

Some days I discover I'm a control freak. Today might be one of those. I'm just saying.

We were only down a person for half an hour of my entire shift, but since one of our sister stores closed last week, we've been a little busier than usual. Plus, I had one of those stupid six hour shifts which does not give enough time to open the store, do the cash deposit, and take the legally-required "lunch" break all without going over on hours. Trust me. It just doesn't. Today especially.

By the time my relief came in, I was too stressed to be relieved; I felt a little like I did on the day of the Last Straw--nearly hyperventilating and kind of shaking. This time I didn't feel like slamming lockers, but when the safe didn't open as I asked it to, setting me back another few precious minutes, I found myself starting to cry.

This, I told myself, was ridiculous. (Everybody else clearly thought so, too, although they were too polite to say so.) There was absolutely no reason to be so upset or so stressed. These things happen. Once I left, two more people arrived so they had plenty of people to get done the stuff that I hadn't. But I still had to go in the back room and take a deep breath and calm down. And I got neither the cash deposit nor the legally-required lunch break done before it was time for me to go.

I guess I was upset because I was trying so hard to have a good shift turnover for the next person in charge, and no matter how fast I ran up and down my gerbil cage, I just couldn't do it. The money still hadn't gone where it needed to go, the sink was overflowing with dishes and recyclables, the brewed coffee kept running out, the pastry case looked like some pastry-locusts had descended, and my stomach was in knots. (Not to mention growling.) But . . . it still didn't make sense for me to flip out over it that much. It's just that I felt out-of-control, and I don't like that, evidently.

After I left I felt much better, but then I talked to someone in my surgeon's office and found out that he (the surgeon) wants to move my surgery to the 30th instead of the 31st. Not only does this mess up my really good Hallowe'en joke, but it messes up my work schedule, which messes up things for everybody I work with. I was supposed to work that day, and I need those hours, and that pay, and . . . I'm afraid I got a little snippy with Diane. (Poor Diane. I'll bet she gets this all the time.) Also--it didn't help. If I want my particular surgeon to do my surgery (which I do), I have to cooperate with when he is able to do it.

I guess I was upset because this cancer is messing with my plans, and it's opening me up for other people to mess with my plans. It makes me feel helpless, and I don't like that.

Then I had to stop by the hospital to pick up some documents and drop off some documents and try to find the financial counselor's office so I could ask them a question. I couldn't find it, and I wandered down scary hallways past people who looked like they knew where they were and what they were doing, and I had no idea where I was or what I was doing at all. I started to feel like crying again, so I gave up my search and wandered back down all the scary hallways and left. I knew if I went to the desk where the document transfer had occurred and asked for a parking validation, they'd give it to me, but they'd also ask me if I found the financial counselors and I would have to tell them no and feel stupid, and then they'd give me the same directions again and I would want to cry some more. So I paid more for parking than I legitimately should, and went away.

I don't think control should be an issue for Christians. I think we should all just trust Jesus and at the very least keep moving forward with a kind of curiosity to see what happens next. I guess some people do that. I don't, very well. Every once in a while I can. But today wasn't one of those times.


Christianne said...

I'm so sorry, Jenn. That sounds like one crap day. I'm sorry you felt like crying several times, and that you felt lost, and that you felt out of control, and that nothing happened the way you expected or wanted it to.

I'm hoping that the remainder of this day brings you some rest, some peace, some calm, some perspective, and some hope.

Clifford said...

I am definitely feeling you on this one. Wanting control's a natural thing. Especially in scary situations - sometimes it heightens our "need" for it. I'm sorry you had a crappy day. :/ I'll say a prayer for you tonight.

Scott R. Davis said...

thanks for your honesty. I even have trouble while waiting for a bus that does not come for an hour sometimes and act as the announcer if I think the bus is around the corner. Or I will pretend to be a sailor looking through imaginary glasses.

I like your humor of the gerbil cage and the way you scampered around at work. Not all the pieces will be picked up at the end of the day.
You will still have your surgery on the night before halloween. On mischief day. But that will allow you to "enjoy halloween a little more maybe and have a day off as well.



Jenn said...

Christianne--I still feel exhausted (now my own fault!), but in fact, the day (and some of the people in it) really did bring me some of all those things you mentioned.

Clifford--thanks for the prayers.

Scott--I'm not positive how much I will be "enjoying" Hallowe'en, but at least I don't have to worry about any Hallowe'en inspired mishaps. Or something.