Category Archives: work

this is more like it!

Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and now Sunday–and I have done my 5 minutes (at the very least) all of these days. 🙂 It’s mostly journal-type stuff, but Saturday I added some wordage to my NaNoWriMo 2010 re-write. It’s not perfect, of course. I’m kind of looking at this as the second first draft, since a lot of it is just going to be completely different.

I sort of started the reboot yesterday as well, but I’m not sure how that’s going to go, exactly. I kind of thought I could do a short story with it and submit it to Jeremy’s Mad Scientist anthology…but I don’t know about that now. We’ll see what else I can come up with this week.

I’m already kind of full-up on things to do this week already, with sewing the baby quilt (picture to be provided when there is a baby quilt to photograph!), doing my outplacement stuff to get info on either finding a new job or starting my own business (more likely both of these things), helping out at the coffee shop, and doing doula business stuff. It’s going to be a long week, but I think it’ll be a good one. 🙂



2.12.12 checkin

I haven’t done my ROW80 updates this week, but there wasn’t really anythng to tell. I haven’t been doing my 5 minutes, I haven’t been exercising, I haven’t been doing a lot of things.

I also haven’t been working; I got laid off from the job I’d had for almost 6 years on Tuesday. It was a surprise, but most definitely a GOOD surprise. My friend B and I decided that I could take the week off because of the layoff so I can relax and get used to it and get it all out of my system. This week, we start the business plan, fix up my doula website, and start figuring out how that business is all going to look–and what else I’m going to do until my doula business hopefully becomes self-sustaining.

Of course, I’d rather just keep doing what I was doing this week, with a little more writing thrown in. It’s been very relaxing…very nice. 😉

I did just buy a new computer yesterday, since I have to return the work one tomorrow. This one isn’t anything fancy; it’s got Windows 7 on it, but none of the Microsoft suite yet. Gotta love friends with Microsoft hookups for software… I mention the new computer, however, because the bootup time is pretty fast in comparison to the work computer (less than a minute as compared to about 10 minutes!), so I can get up in the morning, turn on the computer, go grab a drink of water, and come back, sit down, and do my morning writing. Now THAT’S pretty amazing! Looking forward to Monday morning, for the first time in a long time!


laid off, and yes, i’m happy about it!

Tuesday morning, I had a planned phone call with my supervisor. I thought she was going to be chatting with me about my schedule, or the fact that I have a doula client due any minute now and we’re short-staffed, or something to that effect. As it turned out, when I answered my phone, it was my supervisor and our director calling to tell me my position has been eliminated.

The company got bought out at the beginning of the year, which was a little bit surreal, because not much changed from my point of view. I went to work, did my work, and went home, same as always. There was new stuff coming down the pipe in terms of our processing line, but I hadn’t been included in any of the new project teams–nothing too surprising, and certainly not upsetting. I’m the kind of employee who doesn’t effect changes within the company, but I’m the total cheerleader for changes and learning new stuff when I’m told to. I figured as a low-to-mid-level peon who showed up and did work and cheerlead for changes, my job was safe. Turns out, not so much.

I wasn’t the only person laid off; there were 22 others sacked as well. Talk about a reorganization!

At first I was stunned; then once I got off the second phone call–this one with HR–and immediately started telling people my GOOD NEWS. This company knows how to lay people off well. And no, I won’t say which one. I don’t think they’re hiring right now. 😉

So yes, I’m thrilled I got laid off. It was far from a dream job of mine, and with the severance and such, it gives me some time to put my doula business together and figure out how to do it well–and then DO IT. It also gives me time to sort some things out for myself, both personally and literally; I’m spending time going through all those boxes of things I wanted to sort before I moved in August that I didn’t have time to sort. It’s taking a while, but it’s worth it.

The next several months will undoubtedly be fraught with moments and days of terror and worry about the next phase of my life, but for the moment, I’m good. 🙂


a wee bit o’ writer’s block

I did my 5 minutes this morning. It wasn’t anything exciting. In fact, it was pretty boring. The most exciting part was that I did it in red pen. Yup, you read that right–IN RED PEN.


Now I’m at work, in the last hour and a half of my shift. There’s only one thing to do, and I’m doing it–watching it go. Whoopee.

And I can’t think of a single thing to write about. I have some stuff started that I was writing for a whilte, and I just have absolutely no interest in any of it right now. Nothing else is coming to mind, either.

Maybe I’ll look up “writing exercises” on Google or something, and see if that gets me anywhere.


very sad birthday

Now I’ve had some not too fun birthdays over the years. Two years ago, in fact, I was deep in the throes of pneumonia, which I thought was just the worst.

Yesterday, unfortunately, took the cake.

My previous post, “sick kitty is sick…”, was about my kitty Theodora being sick (obviously). I was obviously very hopeful that she would get better. But over the past week of in and out of the vet, putting in a feeding tube so she wouldn’t have to fight over force-feeding, and dealing with her sister Wanda’s reaction to “that cat smells BAD!”, it became very clear to me yesterday that Theo was just miserable and suffering. Every time we tried to give her food through her feeding tube (no matter how slowly), she would throw it up.

So I made an appointment at the vet, they gave her a sedative, I held her until she fell asleep, and I left her there. Hardest decision I’ve ever made, and it totally sucked. Still does suck. She was snoring when I left–a VERY Theo thing to do–and twitching a little like she was dreaming. Also a VERY Theo thing to do. It made me feel better to know she was peacefully asleep, and that’s how I remember her when I was leaving.

In a VERY strange turn of events–one of those “holy crap, it’s a small world!” things…one of the vets who had been caring for Theo is from the small city just south of the small city where I grew up. We didn’t figure it out at the time, but later on, my brother told me that she’d been in his class at our very small Catholic grade school for a few years. He remembered she’d moved, and he remembered seeing her at our university a few times as well. And now she’s a vet at an awesome cat clinic in Seattle. Weird…but somehow a little comforting, as well. I’ll be dropping her a note to thank her, and I’ll let her know about that. 🙂

For now…it’s work time. Well, it’s been work time, and I’ve been working as I write this. Hopefully I’ll get some writing time in while I’m here, too; my goals of writing and walking in the mornings haven’t gotten going yet, but they will. It’s high time.



sick kitty is sick…

I have two adorable kitties, Wanda and Theodora (named for my grandmother Wanda and her sister Theodora), who turned 11 years old in September (ish). They were under the care of an aunt and uncle for most of their first year, and then I brought them home with me–much to the dismay/delight of my roommate at the time–my little sister.

Well, we’ve had some ups and downs since 2000. Wanda was fat for a while, so we changed foods and she lost weight–and Theo got fat. Never could get Theo to lose weight, until fairly recently. Theo had licked herself a hot spot in the middle of her back, so I had a vet come to the house to see her. She weighed in at 18 pounds (round kitty!), and all her bloodwork was totally normal.

Since then, we switched to a wet food that is supposed to be awesome for them, and Theo started losing weight. Recently, I’d noticed she’d lost a bunch of weight, and then last week she started dry heaving for no apparent reason. I took her to a vet, and it turns out the poor thing is totally jaundiced. Hard to tell with a kitty whose skin is covered up by tortoiseshell hair everywhere. Turns out you can tell on the insides of her ears, the underside of her tongue, and the whites of her eyes. The tests from Saturday came back, and she’s got hepatic lipidosis, meaning she lost a bunch of weight too fast, the fat filtered through her liver and got stuck there, and its made her sick. She won’t eat on her own, not even the super-yummy gourmet high-calorie food they make for kitties who are sick. I dropped her at the vet to stay at least overnight yesterday, and went to see her today to watch and get a lesson in force-feeding. She REALLY doesn’t like it, but she’s getting calories. And dripping food everywhere while the feeding is going on. Stubborn little sh*t…

But she hasn’t thrown up since Saturday night, which I think is an improvement, and she responded really well to me when I was there. I left her there again for tonight to see if they can get her to eat on her own, but if they don’t, I’m still bringing her home with me tomorrow, and I’ll get to force-feed her here instead. Silly stubborn animal.

Now I’m working at home today, and there’s not much to do at the moment. I don’t know if that’s a reflection of the beginning of the year, or a reflection of the fact that it was announced our company was SOLD from our parent company as of January 1. *sigh* From everything I’ve heard thus far, it’s going to be a positive change, and not much is really going to change over the next three months until the actual transition is done on April 1.

Though honestly, I wouldn’t mind getting laid off… the company’s severance package is NICE.


five-day headache

Just when I think it’s not going to happen today, it happens. It’s not a headache that makes me want to scream and claw my eyes out or anything; it’s just kind of dull and there, mainly on the left side. My mom told me to call the doc if it keeps happening, and I believe I’ll be calling the doc tomorrow morning.

On the writing front, for ROW80: my goals were up and down this time, everything from writing 5 minutes a day to doing NaNoWriMo in November, and a few places in between. Nothing has stuck this time around. It took hearing of Anne McCaffrey‘s death to get me writing again this fall, and I’ve written about 5K words in the past few weeks. I don’t think they’re brilliant, and who knows if they’ll go anywhere, but the point is that I’m writing again.

I think that I may not write tonight, however; though I’ve taken the bulbs out of the light above my head and turned down the brightness and contrast on my three computer monitors, my headache is slowly increasing. Definitely time to call the doc tomorrow.  *sigh*



…is a virtue. Been hearing that for years, and I’m quite certain I’ve said it a few times myself.

I have a doula client, one that I took pro bono, with whom I have a really good rapport. We (she, her husband, and I) met, we’ve had 2 pre-birth appointments, and she was due this past weekend. From the first, I stressed that, as their doula, I’m there to help throughout labor and delivery with whatever they need–even if it’s just a calm presence in the room from which they can both draw strength and confidence. We talked about how, as soon as she thought she was having contractions, she would call me, no matter what time of day or night, and I would come as soon as she wanted me.

This morning around 8:45am, I got a text from the husband saying that they’re at the hospital, she’s in labor, and they’ll let me know when they need me. She was doing well, apparently, and they were fine as they were.

I texted again a little bit before 2pm as I hadn’t heard anything, and didn’t hear back right away. I figured that meant something was happening, and I was right: I got an answer saying that she’d gotten the epidural (“thank God”) and is currently sleeping. He’s ordering lunch. He knows how to get hold of me.

They didn’t call me, they don’t want me yet… So much for that rapport.

As a doula, I am an extremely empathetic, yet eminently practical, woman. I am perfectly aware that when a woman–especially a first-time mother–goes through her pregnancy, she really can’t predict a lot of what’s going to happen. She doesn’t know what she’s going to need from moment to moment, which is why women need a lot of support around this event. I’ve had my training, I’m doing my studying, I’m talking to mothers and doulas and dads, and I can’t wait to do this for a living for real.

Being the empathic yet practical woman I am, educated in the ways of childbirth and the idea that the best way to keep a laboring woman comfortable is to do whatever she needs, I can completely understand that adding me to the equation at any point may actually be a stress to her. That is the last thing anyone wants.

But I’m still disappointed. I was really looking forward to being a part of the birth, and the formation of a new family. Next to being there for whatever the mom needs, that’s my favorite part.

And…since they haven’t said they need me yet, I have to go to work. *sigh*

This counts for five minutes of writing today, I think. Go, me! 😉


with a little help from auntie b…

…I’m taking control of my life. 🙂

I’ve spent a lot of time moaning about how things in my life suck, especially over the past few months. In the past year, I’ve gone from working 10am-7pm, Monday through Friday, to working 4pm-12:30am Tuesday through Friday, and 1:30pm-10pm Saturdays. There were reasons–jobs reshuffling within the company, people leaving for new opportunities, volunteering to change my shift, and then being asked to change it again, and being told I’m working Saturdays because it was my turn “to take one for the team, because seniority doesn’t matter here.” I’ve had discussions with my direct supervisor regarding changing off of the swing shift, and was told yesterday that it’s not going to happen until AT LEAST the end of January, more like sometime February.

The whining has involved many of the following “issues”: not getting enough sleep, getting up too early, going to bed too late, not getting to write, not getting to study for my doula work, not getting to spend time with my friends, and just not having enough time to spend with myself.

This afternoon before work, I had a brainstorming session with a friend, who calls herself my Auntie B–which is absurd, since she’s less than 4 years older than me. 🙂 But she has a lot of life experience, and a very direct (yet caring) way of telling people what they need to hear about themselves. As I am generally pretty good at accepting these things when I hear them, she really helps me out a lot. We sat down, made a list of things I need to do, plus things I want to do, and then started picking days for these things, and general times for some of them.

We first gave me a going to be/getting up schedule. This is one of the things I am the worst at. I love going to bed late, sleeping late, hitting the snooze button, and making excuses to stay in bed with my cats. However, even though I love these things, most of them are the worst things I can do for myself in terms of getting enough sleep and having a consistent “daytime” for myself. It’s always one of those things I “should” have better control over. Well, starting tonight, I DO have control. And I’m accountable to Auntie B for going with the plan, or discussing changes to the plan.

Mondays, which are one of my two “weekend” days, is now reserved for weekly food planning, grocery shopping, cooking food, and non-cooked food prep for the week. This means less money on eating out, and cooking healthier food than I been eating whenever I eat out, which tends to be about once per week.

Tuesdays and Wednesdays I’m training to be a barista for when my friend has a baby in February and needs assistance.

Thursdays is doula study day.

Friday is lunch day: plan lunch with a friend/friends I want to keep in touch with and can’t hang out with because of when I work.

You get the idea.

As it turns out, I just needed a manager to help me figure out what the hell I’m doing with my time. 🙂 Together with figuring out my budget (which I’m doing mainly on my own with a piece of software called YNAB (stands for You Need A Budget), this plan will help me finally put my life in order.

Mostly. 😉


much better

I had my massage this morning (thanks again, Melinda!!) and then had a nice, long, hot shower. I haven’t felt terribly awake since then, but my back feels better, and my wrists and hands…well, they’re probably going to take some more effort on my part.

Now it’s work…though there’s not a lot to work on. Thank goodness for iTunes and downloadable movies! At the moment, I’ve picked “The Mummy“–the first one. The best of the three, definitely. The fact that I’m watching it for the second time this week tells you something about how busy I’m NOT at work right now. 😛

I’ve discovered a budgeting software called YNAB–which stands for “You Need A Budget“. 🙂 I’m working on the free 7-day trial right now, while watching “The Mummy” and pretending to work. I don’t know if I’m going to buy the software, but it LOOKS like a good investment right now…

And now I just want to go home. 😛 Perhaps it’s time to come down with a headache? 😉