Thursday, March 08, 2007

Like a Volcano with Dry Heaves


I’m still burning with anger, but I no longer have any steam. That’s what I realized today when my friend and colleague urged me to write up the whole work saga as one last-ditch attempt to convince people. I think I’ve become enamored with that list of things from yesterday, to the point where I’ve lost my desire to fight.

I thought you were supposed to be down to navel-gazing before retirement, without a single meaningful, necessary thing to do. Instead I find myself putting in ungodly hours, working through lunch, to prepare for what is looking more likely to be my exodus. I met with my staff today and told them about the possibility so that they wouldn’t hear about it from someone else. They sort of blanched and the one whom I always joke about as being so conservative that he wears a belt and suspenders simply said, “Holy moly!”

These are the people I will most regret leaving. I had really intended to spend the next two years gradually turning more and more of what I currently do over to them in an orderly fashion. Instead it may simply be dumped on them as I scurry out the door.

I had a bizarre phone call yesterday from B___ #1's boss. He implored me to just try to be nice to her and everything would work out. He told me that she simply didn’t have time for mediation. It was when he told me that she behaves the way she does because she is passionate about her work that I said I had to go to another meeting. She is obviously much better at PR than I will ever hope to be.

I think it’s OK to feel a red-hot glow, but I’m almost relieved that the urge to spew up molten lava has gone away. It could be a difficult month ahead as I combine anger with sadness with anticipation. What an unlikely combination of emotions!

13 Comments:

Blogger Kate said...

I feel so badly that you may not be able to go out with a good taste in your mouth. That feeling is very satisfying.........I know since I am experiencing it. This all seems so cruel and unfair that I am screaming.....fortunately am alone in my apartment but trying not to scare my neighbors.

You know the brilliant and wonderful work you have accomplished and that others on your team (in your group) will not let that seep away..........

I don't want to be a Pollyana here but it is tough........you are such a good person and jealousy over what you have accomplished can be the only motivator for the "b" behavior in my mind. I am prejudiced because I have gotten to know you, albeit recently. BUT.....I consider myself a pretty good judge of character and you are a superb human being.

I am delighted to see your more open perspective on what is happening "to" you...........and how you can overcome it with the light of a fulfilling retirement at the end of the mishagas (unsure of spelling, but you know what I mean).

Hugs & Hugs

9:14 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Kate -- Thanks so much. This means a lot to me. Every time I write one of these "woe is me" posts, I declare that it will be the last, but then I just have to let go of some additional baggage. This Blog has been my salvation. Instead of screaming out loud, I just write it all down. It has helped immensely to deal with behaviors I don't totally comprehend and probably never will.

9:32 PM  
Blogger media concepts said...

I don't have all the facts here, but in reading your posts, the sentiment comes through that you want to retire and are just about ready to let some office adversaries push you out early. Is that the case? If not, I hope that you will avoid getting into petty disputes with those adversaries, and instead make a slam-dunk case as to your value and effectiveness, complete with documenation and figures, to the bosses.

11:09 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

MediaConcepts -- You've pretty well got the picture. Yes, I do want to retire, but I would prefer to do it on my own timetable, which would have been about 2 years from now. Over the past 4 months, I have felt my right to make key decisions constantly challenged and it has been an uncomfortable feeling. My work colleague suggested I do exactly as you suggested yesterday and that's when I realized that my energy to document my case and defend myself has evaporated. I know I should write just one more "for the record" but it might not happen.

5:57 AM  
Blogger Pauline said...

My grandfather used to say, "Once you weigh your options and make an informed decision, listen to your gut. It will tell you how you're feeling about what you're thinking."

It's an important step in the decision-making process. You sound as though you feel good about leaving early despite what you won't be able to accomplish.

6:55 AM  
Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

You're going through a big change. It would be strange if you didn't have a bunch of different emotions going concurrently right now. Cut yourself some slack, my lovely volcanic friend.

B #1's boss is a piece of work himself (or herself). My goodness, passion for one's work as an excuse to be awful? That's pathetic, really. I laughed out loud when I read about it.

Take care. Have a wonderful weekend! I love you.

8:40 AM  
Blogger Ghetufool said...

retire gracefully.

10:38 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Pauline -- Your grandfather was obviously a wise man. I am still at the crossroads of this decision, but next week I should know which path I'm taking. I, like you, have always enjoyed a high approval rating. Aside from my concerns about the work, it is difficult for me to contemplate leaving when my rating is perhaps not so high with certain people.

Reya -- B #1's boss (male) is somewhat spineless. But I do have the experience of having supervised B #1 for a period of time and she is indeed the piece of work. She was largely the reason I left my last job.

Ghetufool -- I would like to do just that. But it's hard to be graceful when you're under fire!

11:46 AM  
Blogger steve said...

Well Barbara, i wish I could give you some kind of good advice here but seing as how I have been carried out of every job I ever had ON MY SHEILD...
I think an accurate gauge may be that if you are entertaining any notion of kicking Jake, Toby (is that right) or David...its time to go and you will be a better person for it!

12:40 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

If you're into making lists, write down all the pros and cans of each scenario and tally them just to see what it looks like...the more surefire positive outcome. And as Steve says, if you find yourself kicking anything you wouldn't normally kick, or putting another couple of bananas in the mailbox, your decision should be clear!

3:31 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Steve -- The old dog is Dylan, not Toby. I would never kick Dylan, but Jake often invites kicking. Everything is hanging in a very delicate balance over this weekend, but I think I will know what happening on Monday. Stay tuned...

MOI -- Yeah, the banana incident made me see how positively daffy I have become. This decision is not about pros and cons. It's actually quite simple. If they listen to me and agree on Monday, I stay for a while longer. If not, I give them 30 days notice and plan the party. Want to come?

4:02 PM  
Anonymous David said...

I could not agree more with Reya here. What a totally ridiculous comment from B__#1's boss. Not enuf time?? Give me a break. She's just an adviser for G__ sake. And, wouldn't productivity be enhanced if everyone would stop fighting?

But, no time for a 2-3 hour session, come on.

And, passion for your work does not equate to being hateful and obnoxious.

Definitely drop this moron from your lunch invitee list!!

9:19 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

I'd love to come and honour your career! So really, it does sound like a no-lose, for it seems to simply be a question of when you'll retire, which will be soon anyway, even if you stay. You're completely in the driver's seat so just sit back and let it unfold. You're in a good place.

10:19 AM  

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