Month Sixty-Seven


Dear Husband,

This month, I want to say thank you. Thank you for holding back. Thank you for letting me know you were there and making sure I knew you cared. Thank you for not getting all vitriolic on my behalf and making me feel like the recent situation was all my fault because I let it get that far. I know you wanted to let it fly as you have done previously but thank you for not doing that this time around.

It’s never fun when a love affair dies and in my naiveté or perhaps arrogance, I thought this one wouldn’t but hey, they are not the first employer that has blindsided me. Neither are they the first who have tried to put me in my place so perhaps I do just have a puffed up impression of my own self-importance. I wrote the other month that I will always remember my first employer being up front about their not being there for my convenience, I was present for theirs. It’s almost ironic that I find myself surprised when this truth was brought home to me again this month.

And that bringing it home bit? That devastated me. There were waterworks and a near sleepless night and shock at some things that I felt were just plain insensitive. You merely listened and let me have my space though. You agreed that it sucked to be informed that I had been “disqualified” for the previous bonus round but that some of my colleagues had indeed been paid bonuses. Two things I didn’t know. You also understood that being told “you’re not overpaid”, doesn’t make you feel any better about hearing they are not prepared to re-negotiate or even discuss your salary after three plus years. At all.

I thought loyalty and effort would count for more. Or at least something. Especially the acknowledged effort. I thought that the communication going both ways was better this time around. I actually thought I was good at all of my job. Ha! I am apparently doing great at two thirds of my job. Stupid me. They are really happy with that portion too. No complaints whatsoever other than the fact that I apparently do too much. But the third of my job for which they also acknowledge that I have had no training and yet still expect me to perform at the level of an experienced professional? Well I’m not meeting expectations now am I?

Sure, I am a working mum with one day off a week but I need to be honest about what I can commit to and organised in my workflow to accommodate others because of my inconsiderate periods of absence regular day off. Some events late last year were a bit of a scramble and an executive was “left floundering” on the day and had to call someone else in to do what I had not. And this year, someone else had to “step in and take over”. And you know what, I agree in principle about the outcome of these events, I just completely disagree with the interpretation.

I managed my time last year by delegating tasks to staff who agreed to do them so that things would not be left to the last minute. They didn’t actually do them (either at all or as requested). It seemed kind of poor form to jump up and down or whinge about it though so I just got on and did what needed to be done. Or what I thought needed to be done. And the events were received really well externally. As far as I am aware. I had no idea anyone internal was “left floundering” because when I asked what people needed to be organised, I wasn’t given the whole picture. I don’t have enough experience to be a mind reader, sorry. And don’t get me started on the “someone stepping in to take over” because that was just unfair.

So I was a little pissed, a lot upset, rather frustrated, somewhat confused, really conflicted, quite torn and a maelstrom of other emotions that I didn’t know what to do with. You let me be though. You commiserated with the fact that it’s demotivating to be told 8 months into a review period (for the first time) that they’re not totally happy and that they will be marking you as “needs improvement” (and therefore below expectations) for some sections. You got that after hearing last year that I should “trust the business to look after me” and seeing how that has played out now I’ve learned I haven’t been hitting 100% of my role out of the ball park that I just felt…broken. I went from feeling valued to used in the space of one discussion. I feel like I’m beating my head against a brick wall and after the tornado of the last two days, I’m exhausted.

You didn’t yell or jump up and down though. You didn’t get really angry in front of me. You waited and blew your mouth off about the whole situation whilst talking to someone else which was pretty much perfect. We both get irritated with each other when we are emotional because we seem to need very different things. And it’s hard to strike a balance between what you really want to do and what the other person needs so I just wanted to say thanks. You are worth more than a rubber chicken any day!

And this is yet another reason that I really should not have been surprised this week. I mean I am obviously asking way too much from the company that recently decided to instate an employee of the whatever-period-it-has-been-since-we-last-caught-up-via-videoconference (probably will be about 6 weeks) because do you know what the winner gets? A rubber chicken. Which you have to give back. They are really into the making staff feel warm and fuzzy.

At least you make me feel good.

emotionally yours,

Your Loving Wife