school is in session

All work and no play has made Alas a dull girl!

I’ve been enrolled in courses since 2/1, and while life hasn’t been all studying ever since, there has certainly been a lot of it. As always, I am a bit shocked to realize that it’s been a few months since I last published anything here. I say published, because I have a drafts folder full of half-composed ideas and tidbits of news and no clear idea of if or when they’ll be completed.

Anyhow, I can now say that I have finished every course for which I was officially enrolled originally and have added two more into the mix since I have a bit over 4 more months to go before my term ends.

Let me be honest: I am beyond pleased with myself.

Let me be honest again: I am annoyed with the school’s model on just one point.

First off, I knew that this would be the model going in, so it’s not like someone decided to spring something on me. I also figured I stood a pretty good chance of not liking this particular portion of the model. Since, um, I work more or less closely with the people who are in charge of this portion of events and most of them seem pretty dumb. Like, exceptionally dumb.

As a student, I don’t have any control over this forced interaction with someone I figured was going to know less than I did about a lot of the University policies and procedures. But then? Then I also got saddled with someone who not only was one of these people, but is also a person who has been around for a scant few months.

I haven’t been around a whole lot longer, in the grand scheme of things, but I have been around in what is – so far as I have been able to tell – the one freakin’ department in the whole place that isn’t allowed to pass the buck.

So even if I get asked something I don’t know, as a staff member, I can’t just be like, “LOL. This is someone else’s problem now!” and give it the heave-ho. I have to figure it out. I have to provide a solution.

I appreciate this to a certain point, but not as student in the department that I am in, being condescended to by someone who literally could not do his job without my department being there to support him and his kind.

Secondly (remember where I said “first off” several paragraphs ago?), I am actually making this condescending bullshit work out for me. For every time my mentor expresses doubt in my ability (which is often), I am automatically all fierce and in my mind all, “Fuck you, [mentor name]!” because I respond to perceived slights on my ability with ferocious displays of prowess.

At least in my own mind.

Which is where I operate.

And I have completed 14 credits with an eye towards another three this weekend and I am less than halfway through my term.

Again, I am beyond pleased with myself. Someone should probably come along and make an honest go at trying to wrangle my ego into submission.

And that is basically where I have been ever since February 1. Tied up in studying or working or semi-raging against the mentor I’ve been assigned as a student.

At least since I have finished 14 CU’s, I am no longer required to maintain the same level of communication. I am down to a bi-weekly basis and this? This is the best news I have had in a while because it means that 1) I get to sleep in this Friday and 2) I am trusted enough to do the work without regular check-ins.

Which, wow, of course I have been.

I can’t believe they made me wait two months to prove that I don’t need someone to hold my gorram hand the entire way.

whether you’re having fun or not

I knew it had been a little while since I had last managed to post something, but I was a little stunned to realize I’d been incommunicado ever since early July and now we’re practically halfway through September and damn. Time flies.

It’s been a busy few months but I am certain I don’t need to bore anyone with all the tedious details and so can sum up fairly quickly.

The new job is going much better than I had expected and I grew a tough exterior pretty quickly. I am definitely one of the more lenient team members on the readmission staff, but I don’t have any problems turning away obviously bad candidates either. In fact, I have only felt bad once and that was only because the student accepted my decision so graciously. Usually they’re a lot more bitchy and will write emails wishing all our family members will get cancer and it’s tough to feel like a wrong decision was made when someone comes at you with that sort of shit.

All of that being said, I did end up applying for another job within the University, in their accounting office. Since I intend to be an accountant when I grow up, it seemed to make sense to start as soon as possible. The interviews were stressful, but just this morning, I ran into the hiring manager in the elevator on the way into work and she said they were still looking, but only because HR was giving them grief about the fact that I haven’t been with the company for 6 months yet, so it sounds like they would make me an offer if HR would let them. My understanding is that they are going to interview some more candidates and if they truly can’t find someone that they think will work, I should get the offer anyhow.

We’ll see. Either way, I am content.

Speaking of being an accountant, I started the enrollment process this last week and am hoping to officially start school on Jan. 1. My 75% discount will be in effect and I’ll have time to study the course material between then and now. Right now, I just feel like I am waiting on my transcripts to be evaluated so I’ll know what transferred and what didn’t. Being on staff in Records means I will know when all this happens and could probably do a rough estimate myself if they would only upload my damn transcript.

/kicks Transcripts team

While I am waiting on that, I am spending time in WoW and really enjoying Legion so far. I adore what they’ve done with the whole choose your own adventure/start where you want leveling path and I’ve been taking the questing slowly. My main just hit 107 tonight, so I am getting close, but not in a rush. However, it looks as though my new guild home will be raiding on a casual basis and I find this suits me very well. Having Grimm and Yngwe around is also lovely!

Of course, I manipulated that whole casual raiding decision and was surprised it only took one enthusiastic conversation with Grimm to do so. I seem to have a knack for suggesting things in the right places or the right ways lately. Following a post of mine on Facebook, my church has recently kicked off small group dinner fellowships. And I am all about getting to know people better over food, so I am thrilled they ran with it and made it A Thing.1

I’ve always wanted to be a Soother.2

That seems to be the major stuff. Just got back from Colorado again, this time there for a family reunion on At’s side. That was splendid and I got to apologize to my in-laws for all the times I’ve been an asshole3 and I think it made… well. Their evening anyway.

The roommate, in the meantime, is still here. But he is also giving me way more space, which is what I need. All the space.

Oh, and my best friend is coming to visit for like two weeks! So. Excite!

So I guess life is pretty great. How be you fine folks?

  1. Yes, I did just segue from WoW raiding into church small groups. What? I’ve always thought the two things had striking similarities!
  2. Ever since I read Mistborn for the first time anyhow.
  3. See: the last 13 years I’ve been married to At

guys, I’m in my 30’s

I am recently returned to civilization after a long weekend spent camping up in the mountains of southwest Colorado. At more than 9000 feet, it was cold, especially at night or when it rained, which was pretty much all of the time. I think I am reaching the point of my life where I am definitely too old for this shit, because we cut our trip short by a day and I am still trying to recover from the whole ordeal, especially in terms of catching up on sleep.

Molas

I returned to work Wednesday, expecting to settle back into my routine and to do so without a fuss. But about 15 minutes after settling in at my desk, my supervisor asked me to meet with her in the conference room. My first thought was that I was in trouble and then my second thought was that she was probably just going to catch me up on whatever announcements I had missed by having the previous day off and so was unable to attend the team meeting.

But it was neither of those things.

She started with a comment about how we had talked in my last one-on-one meeting with her that I wasn’t destined to remain on her team for long. The follow up was that I had been moved to another team and another process. Effective almost immediately, because a person on that process was moving to another position within the university.

My first reaction was to be flattered, because come on. I’ve been there two months. I am not even off my three month probation and they want to freaking promote me and hand me a raise. Not a small raise as I found out a day later. A $2/hour raise, bringing me back up to what I had been making at my previous job, only including benefits and really freaking good benefits at that. It’s a financial win all around.

But. But. HOWEVER.

I’ve been working the new process for a few days now and not only do I think I will quickly grow bored with only dealing with one thing, but I think I will hate, hate, HATE dealing with that one thing for any length of time.

They’ve put me on readmissions, so it’s basically my job to look at anyone looking to come back to one of the four colleges we have, and decide whether to approve, conditionally approve, or flat out deny them re-entry. A previous version of myself might have relished the chance to have that kind of power, but the current me, who has felt so called to love even the least worthy because that is what my God does, is sick over it. I cannot be making these decisions. I have no idea where the lines between mercy and judgment lie these days.

In fact, for the last month, this song has been stuck in my head non-stop. Which is weird for me, because it has nothing to do with me and my struggles with anxiety, so there you go. It’s been a place outside of myself and my selfish ways.

At the same time, I am recalled to how I felt when I first was offered this job, like I was being specifically granted favor for a purpose. And now I am being given even more favor. For the first time in my life, I have been promoted based off my merits and performance. And I am in my 30’s y’all. And I have never been a slacker.

So perhaps this is where I am meant to be. Perhaps this is what I am meant to be doing. Perhaps I have been granted this favor for a reason.

I have no idea.

I only know that it’s the weekend and I am so afraid to go into work on Monday, because I know they are going to demand I do some part of this new job at some point that day. I know I don’t feel ready, no matter how well I’ve already mastered the process so far as the technical “click this thing and then this thing and also this box” process is concerned.

So here I am, crying about a promotion and a raise when I feel I ought to be happy, but instead feeling sick. Perhaps this is the very first of all first world problems, but I don’t think I want this, not if it’s going to be so much anxiety and stress for so little reward. On the other hand, there’s a chance I can take my new heart for mercy and apply it to people who wouldn’t otherwise get the chance. I have no idea.

Here’s where I am though. Please send help. Or prayers. Or the force. Whatever you want, really.

busy

Oh jeeze. I did not mean to let that long lapse between posts happen.

I blame real life in general and my new job in particular. Well, I suppose I’ve been making choices in my personal life that have also contributed to the not writing, but it’s mostly work y’all. For real.

It started out like all new jobs do: Information Overload. And the more complex a job, I’ve noticed, the more overload there is. So in a way, I am very grateful indeed that I’m a week and a half in and still come home feeling like my head is about to burst. I should be challenged for some time to come, especially since so far I’ve only been taught a very tiny portion of what there is to learn.

I’m working in the Records Department for a university, and it’s not your run of the mill university. They’re all online, all at your own pace and accredited to the hilt. Also, they don’t run on artificial schedules, so when a student comes on for a term, it’s for 6 months and it starts whenever the first of the next month is. Also, there are somewhere between 60,000-70,000 students. I mean damn.

This makes life interesting in Records, to put it mildly!

So far, they have me posting grades for students in the Business and IT Colleges, which are two of the four colleges there are (nursing and teaching are the other two), and the ones with the easiest to comprehend rules for posting scores. The way it works is that the student will email the department email with their official score report and that will open a “ticket” basically, which will be dumped into a queue, where someone on the team will grab it, check to make sure everything is good from the quality of the document(s) submitted to there not being extra tickets floating around for the same thing (these students get antsy, yo) to making sure the  course the assessment is for is actually showing up in that student’s courses for the terms. If everything is a go, we post the score, pass or fail. So, you know, kind of deeply important work to all these people working on their education.

Eventually, I’ll move beyond posting grades and into other things that have to do with Records, like name/gender changes, getting transcripts out to other entities and I have no idea what else, but probably a little bit of everything from initial enrollment to graduation.

Anyhow, that’s the essence of it. I’m on a team of introverts, so haven’t gotten to really know anyone yet, but I have a feeling if we find common ground outside of work tasks, we’ll click along nicely.

All in all I’m optimistic. And tired. And my brain is super tired. Here’s hoping I’ll have the hang of my job in 6 months when I’ll qualify for a discount on tuition!

short-timer syndrome

Oh boy, you guys. I have not wanted to be at work like at all this past week.

A large part of that has certainly been good old short-timer syndrome, wherein an employee on their way out of  a job loses all motivation to do anything productive or possibly even show up at all because what are they going to do? Fire you?

I think the other part reflects even more poorly on me. When I informed my boss on Monday that I would be moving on, he just smiled in a contented sort of fashion, as though I were a problem that had just resolved itself without his needing to take any action.

Possibly he has wanted to get rid of me ever since my sister started working on a more consistent basis. I don’t entirely blame him since she kicks ass at this whole job. Given a choice between the two of us, I’d pick her, no questions asked.

At the same time, it was me who got him through all the early days of the transition and who has been here keeping things going for the past year. That’s not nothing.

I guess I’m a bit disgruntled that he seems so happy to be getting rid of me even though it was my own choice to go and I am fairly certain I’ll be happy in the new job. I feel as though he places no value on the service I have provided in the past, so it’s been kind of difficult to work up to wanting to provide more than the bare minimum just at present.

Despite that, I will say that I haven’t shirked anything, no matter how tempting it has been to do so. That’s rewarding in a way, I suppose, being able to have pride in myself for knowing of my own integrity. It also made it possible for me to give my utmost to a recent project that will be a big time saver for the office long after I’m gone1, and I have to say, I think the spreadsheet I was able to put together is pretty slick. I had a lot of fun with it, too, which was extra nice since I’ve basically just had to force myself to make it to the office at all, but most especially on the days when my sister is there2.

Anyhow, not much to say here except that I’ve got that low level blah sort of feeling and my lunch hour just went by way too quickly, rather unlike the rest of this day.

Guess it’s back to the salt mines with me for now! How are you guys doing towards the ends of your work weeks?

  1. That I had to do this project at all is actually Very Silly. It was just to get some raw data presented in a sexier fashion than just the plain and stark original report that worked just fine for the last dentist for years, but whatever.
  2. Because she doesn’t need me at all, so I sort of want to just let her handle it and be able to stay in bed myself.

on work

I was gonna write a thing about my recent job search and my conflict in not knowing which option to go for should I get any offers. In fact, I wrote a lot of words about the whole thing. And then before I reached a conclusion of any sort, well…

I got a job offer.

And yeah, I accepted it.

I am mostly sure that it was the right thing to do, but I’d be lying if I said I were positive.

The thing is, I am fairly certain that it’s not the job that I want. In the job I’m about to leave, I discovered a deep passion for Accounts Receivable, of all things, and the job I just accepted has basically nothing to do with that.  I mean, I need to have accuracy in data entry, but whatever. I can’t think of any jobs that don’t require that in some way, shape or form.

So I took this job for the benefits, including the ones that the company doesn’t actually offer (those being that the husband works for this place as well so shared commute and use of carpool lane on the way there and shared lunches and blah, blah, blah). One of those benefits will be a massive discount on tuition1, which will at least put me on the path towards my Bachelor’s in Accounting.

I’m giving my current boss my two weeks’ notice on Monday, and I’d by lying if I said I weren’t looking forward to that, at least a little. Of course, that’s mostly because I’m so tired of him and his shenanigans2 and it’s kind of just driven me to the point where I want to embrace a workplace that has an employee handbook, no matter how out of date said handbook seems.

Anyhow, all of that is to make some explanation to my one whole reader as to why I’m saying I’m all on fire to write but then haven’t actually pulled anything together enough to get anything posted.

Sometimes, I am not organized.

Also, I’ve been busy.

I had to jump through all the “on-boarding” hoops3, which was really not that bad, but was still worse than it needed to be. There was just so much repetitiveness in having to type all my personal information out time and time again. If you have my address, birthday and SSN in one document, why do you need all of them in all the other documents? Annoying.

But I quibble, and that’s mostly because that little part of me was wondering if I made the right choice in accepting this job. I’ve been reflecting on that over the past few days and here’s what I’ve come up with:

  1. I was applying for jobs a while ago but that had been mostly out of a sense of anger and/or dissatisfaction with my boss. Nothing ever came of that, despite my being a whole lot more assiduous about applying to places back then.
  2. My decision to start looking for a new job most recently was due to some really good reasons that have a lot to do with my sister.
  3. I actually realized this latest go-round with applying to places that, I don’t know, maybe I should pray about it first and see if I felt like God was guiding me in this direction or if I was doing it for wrong reasons again.
  4. Yep. That is a feeling I did and do have.
  5. I had three interviews in a three week period which seemed like confirmation that I was on the right track.
  6. I asked God specifically to not let me have favor in a place/environment that I wasn’t meant to be and to make it really obvious where I was supposed to go.
  7. I had so much favor in this latest interview at my new job that I was interviewed on Wednesday, given a job offer on Thursday and on-boarded on Friday. It’s been very fast, especially when I was told at the end of my interview that they wouldn’t be making any decisions until this end of the next week and then got an email the next afternoon saying they didn’t want to wait to make the offer. Favor.

At the end of that list or the day, it doesn’t really make any sense that I should still feel a sense of hesitation about this new position, so perhaps it’s just one more way in which I allow fear to dictate to me.

If so, I am not going to allow fear to stop me from stepping out. I’m taking this job and I have every intention of absolutely rocking it.

All I have to do now is make it through a few more weeks of work without letting everything I genuinely do love about my current job make me feel regret over my decision to move on.

  1. I guess I just gave away that this place is a university
  2. Wherein ‘shenanigans’ is code for fucking idiocy
  3. Remember when it was “orientation” and I’d call it “disorientation”? Yeah, me too. I think all of American corporate culture changed the word they call it so that people like me couldn’t mock it quite as easily. Okay, this is probably not true.