I had to work late, last night – as in, early this morning. We started an installation project around midnight, and we were all on the phone till 2 a.m.
The install didn’t actually work 100%, but my piece of it did, which was a huge credit to my team, because although we were the ones who had tested out our piece of the puzzle the least, we were the ones who actually had the least amount of problems.
We had one little thing we needed to re-do, but other than that, we were good.
Which was really what we needed to prove, anyway.
The rest of the extended team has to sort things out, but we’re good to go, the next time we take a crack at it.
So, I got to bed around 2:30, and I actually managed to sleep till 9:30, which is a rarity with me. It truly is. Typically, I would wake up at 7 a.m. and just be awake — which would have given me all of 4-1/2 hours of sleep. No good. As it was, I got about 7 hours of sleep, which is my minimum for basic functionality.
It’s been an exciting week. I had a phone screen job interview on Thursday, and I think it went okay. It’s a permanent job, not a contract, and there are lots of benefits and paid time off and all that. I’m not sure if the money is there in the paycheck, but it has lots of other perks to go along with it.
I thought the conversation went fine. It didn’t fire me up and get me really excited. It’s a job I’ve done a number of times in the past, so I could do it. I’m just not sure I really want to. After considering getting the hell out of my current job, it occurs to me that I’m actually fine, being where I am. I know I complain and bitch about things, but that’s to be expected — anywhere I am. If it’s not one thing, it’s another.
So, to make a change from the situation I’m in, which is safe and guaranteed and has plenty of money associated with it, and is actually really easy for me to do, might not be the smartest thing. My present situation gives me plenty of flexibility and leeway to come and go as I please — not to mention affords me plenty of time to work on my other projects, like this blog. If I transfer to a permanent, full-time position, then I’m stuck in the corporate world with a corporate job and all the strings attached that come with it.
Nothing’s free — least of all a “good job”. It has a price tag attached.
So, if it works out with the new thing, it works out. But I have a feeling it’s not going to give me what I’m looking for. I’ll go talk to them, if they want to meet, but I’m not putting all my eggs in that basket. And I’m interviewing them, not just being interviewed by them.
I have my pride. And I know my worth. I know the worth of my freedom, and even though I’m not fully vested with any one company right now, my freedom is worth it. Everything has a price, you know?
So, I’m still a little groggy from the late night. I almost fell last night, when I was standing up from the table. That’s not good. I really need to take care of myself this weekend and recuperate. It takes a lot out of me, to work late. More than I’d like. But there it is.
Main thing is, I did get 7 hours of solid sleep. And I have another day and a half to make up the difference.
8 thoughts on “Late night, and late morning, too”
Executive system dysfunction is the most insidious and disabling problem that occurs with TBI. Most of what we do everyday is actually done on autopilot once we are familiar with what we are doing. The executive dysfunction rears its ugly head most when we are dealing with new or novel situations.The time that a TBI survivor is most at risk for disabled functioning is during transitions, particularly moving on to a new job. In the past that has been when I had the most difficulty.
I started a new job (same work description, but another city and state). I knew that I had to keep my conscious mind maximally engaged and aware in order to anticipate and prevent potential brain-injured moments. So far, so good, except for yesterday. I was told that I needed to go to building 24 to pick up a key. I was careful to write down the building and room numbers on a piece of paper and to take a map of the campus with me.
However, I ended up going to parking lot 24, not building 24, all because I did not consider the map key. I saw 24 on a gray square and did not doublecheck if grey meant a building. Building 24 was at the opposite end of campus. On my way to building 24, I entered another building and came out of an entrance facing east rather than north, which meant that I trudged to another wrong corner of the campus before I realized my mistake and finally found my way to the right building. What should have been a 10 minute task ended up taking close to an hour, all in hot sun at a muggy 93 degree F.
I have rarely been this disoriented in my life, but it was my fault. Although I thought I was being careful, I was not careful enough when I read the map. I did not give the task of reading a map the proper respect as a hard task. I thought it was an easy task, but it was not.I was too casual in my approach to that particular task and suffered the consequences of not taking the few extra seconds to orient myself properly.
Oh, I know that feeling well. Things that could/should be so easy turn into trials.
today i decided to walk home from local airport. a man stoppedand for reasons i know now, i decided to trust man- no small feat for ptsd guy who does not care for a taxi. but he saw that i was headed in a wrong direction. i’m very good with sense of direction still, but it is the transitional thing. my therapist saw it as panic attack mode. maybe a little of both and she is very helpful still but i know in secret there is more to story. it is what marie speaks of. transitional stuff and for me that old lag time. extra time needed to get oriented unless it automatic pilot stuff.
once while teaching, the staff noticed that i had no orientaion even though i had subbed there several times and the building was straight forward. a few were like how does this guy run a class so well, and does not know how to exit this building yet. always one or two catch it. i heard through wall teachers discussing me. one says its that the guys implicit memory is so strong but the explicit memory- big problems. one very interesting thing was in the identity loss thru tbi. i forgot of this feeling passion for soccer and someone kicked a ball my way and i found myself doing very well with it after 10 years of no touch. somebody says how come you never told us about you had past with soccer. we needed a coach here. i said that i forgot or something that seemed very strange. but what they never knew was the deep pain involved in forgetting one’s passions in life. it comes down to the one big fact, unless you have personally suffered it, you don’t get it and we waste our time trying to explain it. spontanious confabulation is another area that can be troublesome. bb had good post on that one.
just thinking about futility in discussing effects of tbi with average person. explained to a brilliant niece i have of how dating was for me the first year from coma. people think self-esteem takes a hit. no self-confidence. or well some people choose to share less on dates- different dating styles. no dammit. i not only forgot unwritten rules of dating, and who i was but i blurted out nonsenses for awhile. sorry i didn’t suddenly forgot my orientation or some abuse 30 years ago popped up. no no no. un less i was in monologue form or the music playing i knew no dance of any form of love or dating. no no no i did not have narcissistic disorder or borderline, i was trying to figure out guy in mirror. i had empathy i forgot too process it or show it for many years. i wasn’t a great liar. i didn’t know what was up- for awhile. i asked myself why i like this book and relate so much to this jill somebody and her “stroke of insight” Why nurses on a street ask me to walk straight again. no i hadn’t been drinking. and few years later so coordinated again. no wondr i am the great con man. it could not be the man had brain injury and never told us. we are not all neorscientists talking of their own experience of stroke and besides i didn’t have a stroke. leave me alone all of you. write what you wish in your notes. guy who picked me up walking in wrong direction said he thought i needed medical doctor. just a give me a few minutes i’ll get it together. please i don’t need your help like that. i’m no threat to self or others. let me stay in my room forever if i make you feel uncomfortable at times. don’t tell me how well i look or how well i acted such and such a time. “passive agressive” that one is true. i’m human not character disorder. ever think the way you treat me helps me go that repulsive to me way of “passive-aggressive”
I’m terrible with directions, when I am going somewhere new. Just terrible. And I tend to make poor choices, when I “wing it”. Once, I decided to go for long walk on a train track behind the apartment complex where I lived. I must have walked a couple of miles, and it was literally in the middle of nowhere. And the grade beside the tracks was so steep that getting to safety with a train bearing down on me would have been dangerous. A couple of guys on a repair handcar (the kind where you push those handles up and down to get where you’re going) found me and gave me a lift to the nearest town. For some reason I trusted them – and I got to ride on their handcar. It was far from the smartest thing I’ve ever done — people disappeared in those woods, every now and then — but it was an experience.
Sometimes people just want to help someone else. And it’s important to let them. It’s good for both of us.
I’ve been there, too. I used to contract for different companies, providing professional services, and one of the buildings I was working in had six floors or so — spread out over seven stories. So, each floor was a little different, but the building was shaped the same way. And I used to walk in circles, because I couldn’t figure out where the elevators or fax machine were. I was on medication for chronic pain at the time, which did not help. After people looked at me strangely a bunch of times, it occurred to me that my job might be in danger, if they doubted me state of mind, so I just started walking with a sense of purpose, acting like it was on purpose.
That’s actually the story of my life. If I can’t beat it, own it — and act like I’m doing it on purpose.
The only problem is — as you say — when someone challenges me, and the wrong thing pops out of my mouth. Then we have trouble.
People know desperately little. And they make sh*t up as they go along. They hear an expert say part of something, then they get it all scrambled up in their heads, then they improvise and combine it with other sh*t they heard some other expert say… and before you know it, they’ve got things completely messed up — but they’re not the ones who suffer for it.
Some of the benefits that have come from raised awareness about mental health and different abilities, have been:
– getting access to better care
– people being better able to discuss things
– explaining why things are a certain way, that’s not all about demon possession or character flaw
On the other hand, the knowledge is terribly incomplete and people forget that we still have a long way to go in understanding structurally based “neurodiversity”.
It gets too much for me, and my head starts to ache.
My chief strategy is to focus on the good I have and work from there. Focus on my strengths. Make them my main focus. I can think of at least one, at any given time — even if it’s just the ability to lower my heart rate.
Sometimes that’s the best thing I can possibly do for myself.
Oh, and ignore other people. Especially the ones who “know”.