Job Interviews

I should be more than happy about this situation. I had a job interview with the old job I had that I left in September earlier this week. Yes, the one that I left in September.

It pays $20,000 more a year than what I was making at the state. I share an office instead of a desk in a pod, and it is mostly self directed. Then why do I absolutely hate the idea of going back you might ask? Because I left originally because of the anti-trans issues that popped up from some employees and from the County Council.

I have the second interview there today and there is a huge part of me that is praying they pass me over. I suspect they won’t, they are using the desk guide I wrote and the guidelines I developed for whoever gets hired back. However, there is evidently three of us getting the second interview and one of the people had worked closely with the boss of this department. The voice inside my head is hoping that they give it to them. I hate nepotism but the dark side of me is hoping it gets used today. There is a part of me that just twists at the idea of having to deal with those looks daily at me for being trans. To be honest though, that would probably only only last for a few months.

No matter how I feel though, I know I can’t reasonably tank the interview on purpose. I watch the husband struggle with pressure that our finances rest on him. My face is going to cost the same OR MORE than getting a master’s degree (above $36,000) and it is going to be all credit. I do have unemployment and we do make enough to squeak by making that extra payment so we won’t crash financially (even with the payments on my face I can scavenge enough to keep us going at least 12-18 months). Even so, while I do have the ability to keep going financially,  I can’t say no if I get offered it.

I am already expecting though, if I get hired and find they are still the douchebag coworkers that I left because of, that I probably won’t return after my actual facial surgery. I am even looking at returning to the DoD as I felt there was more support there. Some of the management already said they would pick me up without a hesitation and since we won’t have to rely on the DoD for my medical that is an option. This is because the hubby is still working state and my insurance will still be through the state.

So I feel horrible that I even think I would like to not get the job. Like I am failing the hubby. I have no doubt this is all nudged by my transition specific stresses as well. It becomes this large ball of stress and I don’t know what to do.

That isn’t true, I know what to do and I will do it. I will go to the interview and give my best performance and take the job if it is offered, work my ass off on it no matter what others say and determine in May when I come back from my facial surgery whether I want to jump to the feds or not (right now higher probability then staying).

If I don’t get the job, I will keep applying at places and most likely go back to the DoD as well. Either way its going to suck mentally, but I need to do it. I can’t leave the hubby hanging.

The only thing about all of this is I have never been able to take time to just relax, or focus on my transition. It has been about work and money the whole time. It would be nice to focus on me at some point, but maybe once this is over I can work it out.

Anxiety, Unemployment and Job Interviews

I have been quiet the last couple of weeks due to an overabundance of anxiety, projects and money stress. Overall it has been going ok, and only some of my stuff is transition related so I will cover that in a future post.

As we all know, I was laid off 25 minutes after I put in my request for time off for FFS related to my transitioning. It was unexpected although not necessarily unwelcomed. I hated that job anyways, the management I worked with (as part of management) had favorites, targeted specific employees they didn’t like and overall, I disapproved of how they did it. So, my being cut out was fine, especially if it made me eligible for unemployment. Sort of a win-win.

Five weeks later they still were not approving my unemployment (sadly I worked for the people that handle unemployment, so it was a bit awkward signing up for it) and that has caused a massive amount of stress financially.

We can totally get by on what my hubby makes, even if it is super tight budget wise. He is working his ass off, but it crushes me every time I see him having to do what he does, and he does it willingly to help support me and my transition. That is why it was so important I get unemployment so I can take that burden off and smooth our wait for my surgery in April.

Last week I got asked to come in for an interview at the job I had before last. I left that job because of some pretty transphobic coworkers (they didn’t know I was transgender) and so I made a soft exit and went on to what was a cursed job. Now they wanted to interview me again so while I dislike the idea of working there again, I know the job and it pays fairly good, better than my hell job.

I went in to the first interview, part of me really hoping they wouldn’t want me back just so I could actually have some time to be a stress ball about transitioning and surgery. I was clear on the massive amount of time I was going to be requesting off this year due to four surgeries (at least, not counting any revisions or fixes needed). They seemed mildly ok with it.

I got home and the next day I find I am approved for unemployment. Massive amount of pressure taken off both the hubby and I for at least six months. It isn’t a lot of money and it means we will not be paying any of the large debt we are incurring for my face, but it would keep us going.

Not more than three hours later I get an invite to the second interview for that job, a job I don’t want but pays too much for me to justify not taking it. So now there is a little frustration that I got the unemployment but that will probably be going away by the beginning of February IF they hire me (that is still not even close to a definite yet).

So now I have this cognitive dissonance. I am getting unemployment and am happy, but stressed it isn’t more money. I may get a job that pays about double my unemployment but will hate and here I sit spinning my wheels stressed about all of it.

Stress like a rat on a wheel, circling round and round.

I find if I express this it sometimes helps, which is why you get to all read about it. There are some transition things happening that add greatly to this, but like I said those will be their own post.

So here I am stressing out that I might have a better paying job, or that I am not making enough on unemployment. You would think between the two choices I would find myself happy, but I am not. Such is the life of a girl.

A quiet week of scanning.

One of my goals in 2019 was to post several times a week, but already I got a little behind. For the last week or so I have been scanning our pictures packed away. I did this about two years ago shortly after my parents passed. it was done in a hurry, the scan qualities probably not the best, but I did it so I could get the degrading photos safely saved and handed out to my family members.

The photos from my childhood had traveled with us homeless for years, we moved more than 20 times in my childhood (eviction, poverty and homelessness) and this meant all we had left were some ratty photo albums that we kept no matter what. So when my parents died, I figured it was important to scan them, evidently not as important to my family in the end. Lesson learned on that front.

Now that we are settled and I am taking some photo restoration online classes I am learning a lot. I want to go back through not just my childhood, but the hubby and I’s photos and scan everything that I WANT. I make this distinction because there were a lot of photos I scanned that I had no idea who the person was, where it was at, etc. It was only done in case someone wanted it in the future. Now that I am doing it for myself, I can be picky. The other problem is my organization when I scanned it makes it hard to figure out what photos I want to keep and if I can get them in better quality, so here we are scanning.

That being said, being picky is pretty hard. I can for the most part not blink as I put aside photography dealing with people I don’t know who they are. I can also avoid photos of scenic (or not so scenic) views of places that don’t mean so much to me.

I have however found it difficult anyways to not scan some stupid imagery. Not that it means anything to me, but I think it is some sort of resonance, or worry that I don’t want to lose what my parents were looking at, at one point in time of their life. It makes me super anxious that I might be squishing out their point of view.

Don’t get me wrong, I am still not scanning all of the photos I will never look at anyways, but it does give me anxiety about doing it. I am about 1/3 of the way done after a week and I will be glad to have it done, and stop the scanning.

At least at that point I can use my computer to figure out duplicates, remove them. Then remove photos I can’t restore and are no good. I will then go back through my current photo library (after backing it up) and deleting or replacing photos I don’t want or need.

The other good experience is I am learning pretty fast how to restore photos, it is both easier and harder than you would think. Hey, maybe now that my job prospects are shakier with being out and trans I might be able to pick up a little side money restoring photos, or even photo manipulation.

Either way, next couple of weeks will be busy as I do this.

Wrapping up 2018

I have been remiss lately in my postings due to holidays, stress and other factors. However, I really want to start engaging more. I find that posting about my life lets me explore things and learn things about myself, or at the very least let’s me see where I was at a given point in time (even if sometimes embarrassing).

I am not someone who really has ever particularly liked the whole “magic day” that makes new things possible. Your new year starts when you want it to, it isn’t a date, but because I am more hypocrite then anything I thought I would start though with a bullet list of where I stand currently in my life, give me something in one year to look back and determine how things have changed at a glance.

Important Points in 2018:

  • I am married to the most fantastic, supportive man and love of my life for 26 years. Only decision (other than maybe transition) that I have not ever regretted.
  • I came out and began my transition in 2018, I have never been happier with how I looked or felt, lost 100lbs from March – December and am excited about the changes (20lbs more is my target, but I am ok where I am at if I don’t make it).
  • I am unemployed due to transitioning. I left my long term job because of the transition and working for the department of defense. I then left the county job to go to the state job in order to go to a place that would know who I am and support my transition. Only to be let go 25 minutes after I request off time for my upcoming gender confirming surgery (FFS/Orchie/Chest Reconstruction).
  • I have a great set of family I have chosen, it is small but meets what I need.
  • I have a great gaming group, first long term roleplaying game in over a decade.
  • We are financially stable even being unemployed thanks to my husband and being out of almost all debt (we got 100% out except student loans until I started medical transitioning and we had to buy a car).
  • I am in a secure apartment, with our goal to stay here for five years.
  • I am learning to walk away from toxic relationships, no matter who.
  • Our cat Ghost passed this year after spending three years with us.
  • I started photoshop, photography and digital art tutorials/classes online. Not much progress yet.
  • I finished 52 books this year.
  • Our book we are writing (accidentally gay) is at the editor and finally had first edit done, target date is around Valentine’s Day for publishing.

I will probably update this list as I think about it. It is after all only 3:55am and mornings are rough.

So, there you have in a nutshell (or bullet list) the big things this year that I remember happening). I will posts soon about what I want to do in the next year and see if it works out.

Apartment Gathering (dream)

I fell asleep this morning on our slightly comfortable couch after a lot of insomnia. It was the first dream I remember was end of last October.

We were living in an old apartment, it was above the first floor (but not top floor) and it was about 3 in the morning. We had a ton of people were in the apartment visiting, which in real life is extremely unusual. Several people I liked like Trisha, Kailey and some legacies/dying light people were there chatting away, it was almost the start of something like the parties we did use to host in Bellingham.

There were also several people over visiting that were maybe friends of those people, but who I didn’t have a clue about. They were kind of snotty, annoying, made themselves too much at home and would not have been invited by me, but they were with people I liked so I let it go. I need to make a clear note here though, everyone was about my current age, not actual age we were when we played dying light/legacies.

This went on for a little while when there was a singular older guy just on my last nerve. It wasn’t anything specifically, but he was kind of a whiny white guy twat who just bitched about everything. It was that weird entitlement you see in some boy gamers, along with the whole “friends’ zone” vibe he kept giving off. He should have been wearing a fedora. He kept trying to one up everyone in the stories when it was clear to everyone that he was lying about his experiences.

It was at this time that I noticed everyone kept coming in and out of my living room window from the outside. It didn’t make sense for a few moments in the dream since I knew it wasn’t street level outside.

It turns out that they were hanging on one of the rooftops around the building. We were in a similar apartment building to where I lived as a kid where there was multiple stories and roofs/ledges you could climb out on (more like a giant old mansion building where there was 1st, 2nd and 3rd story roofs scattered, depending on the location of the apartment).

On about the fourth time they are climbing back into the apartment I realized I had neighbors and I told them to get their ass in the apartment and off the roof, and to keep their voices down since the clock said it was 3am. There were murmurs of people not happy with that decision, but I didn’t care.

That older whiny guy whined some more for several minutes, and I sort of lost my shit, I told him to get the fuck out of my apartment, it was my place and I didn’t know him from jack anyways so he could go pound sand. He was really tugging at my last nerve and funny enough I didn’t feel bad about saying it after it was out of my mouth (I normally do feel bad even if they deserved it).

He sort of threw a hissy fit and started to act like I couldn’t do that while his friends were here, that was until I got closer to him and instead of getting more physically aggressive as would be my normal mode up to a few months ago, I pulled out my phone and said I was calling the cops if he didn’t get the fuck out of my house. Not sure what brought this change in tactics for me, I don’t recall being any shorter, but maybe I was skinnier like I am now and didn’t have the bulk.

Then everyone started packing up, I wasn’t sure if it was one of those things were, they all had caravanned in so had to go if he went or what, but I didn’t really care. However, asshole kept taking forever to leave my apartment. I stood up and told him he has 10 seconds and started counting down. I pulled out my phone and started dialing, this is when he still bitched but headed out with everything else without too much of a struggle after that.

A little relieved I watched as everyone left. I then turn down the stairs to the bottom floor and on the second set of stairs I see coming up are another large group of people, talking loud, and I dreaded they were heading for my place. The only one coming up that I didn’t dread was my mom in a wheel chair at the front of the group. I was caught off guard because I think I was half awake and realized she was dead and shouldn’t be there.

That is when I woke up disorientated on the couch with the hubby asking about the socks (ok I think he asked after I woke up, but it is all discombobulated).

Centering Myself

I have been quiet because I needed to take some time away and center myself. I talked about being fired last week, and that it caught me completely off guard. I needed some quiet time to set up for the long wait of unemployment, and to see where the finances stood for the husband and I. Mostly I just needed to work through the feeling of being betrayed.

The finances are still ok. We got both our student loans deferred (I am unemployed and eligible, he still had optional deferment available) so we can make it on his income alone, even with our car payment. So financially we are doing ok without any income from me.

I have turned in all the required paperwork, I wasn’t let go for cause and there should be no issues on my work record. I should get unemployment. However, that can take some time, since the four quarters they count my income are when I worked for the feds. The feds don’t report wages to the state unless a person requests, so it could be weeks before I get any unemployment… We can get by, but it means I can’t put money aside for the FFS.

Of course this all happened the same week I flew down to Phoenix, got my FFS, and everything medically is going into fast gear. So a lot of anxiety has been occurring. That being said, a week later I find myself happier. I truly was despising that job. Mainly the way my management team I was on would target employees they didn’t like. That put me on the other side of my co-managing team several times when I couldn’t agree to punish my auditors for things that didn’t merit that level of punishment.

On top of all this there was a lot of disdain for my transition that had been building up. There were some people that were great, but several people I worked directly with would get that weird lip pull back when I talked about it, and obviously they were uncomfortable. Evidently uncomfortable enough that after I submitted an FMLA request for my FFS surgery I was walked out of the office 25 minutes later with no disciplinary actions, no warnings, it was just cashing in on the CBA and giving me “no cause” for my being released.

The frustrating part is the reason I came here was they are supposedly open to transgender employees, that wasn’t the case in the end. Even now I am really frustrated I took a 30k a year pay-cut, my commute when from 15-20 minutes to over an hour and all because a boss I used to work for and thought was a good person turned out to be a pretty shitty person. It all kind of hit me there and then. This job was taken purely because of my old boss, and it was nothing like I was told.

This means that I am now applying at jobs as much as possible. I would like to earn as much money as I can before surgery to help offset the cost, but the odds are that no one will pick me up before April. I don’t pass anymore, and I am ok with that. I suspect job interviews in the conservative business world will not go as planned. You never know though, maybe I will be surprised.

So this week I have been meditating a LOT. Trying to sleep enough and taking care of the husband since he has a stressful job and the money responsibility is on him. I think he is liking that I cook, clean, take care of him overall. I hope it is making it easier.

Now a week later there is a part of me to be fulfilling the traditional wife roles, I have always been motherly to people (it is joked about) but now it feels like I can be who I am. The meditation and supportive family I have chosen has made this experience so far better than I had hoped. Now that I am feeling centered, it is time to prepare for the surgeries (4 of them in 2019) and to get mentally in the groove.

So there I am, more centered now that I am not working for a shitty boss. Finances are tough, but aren’t they for almost everyone?

 

Fired!

I was going to write all about my consult itself, but it turns out something more exciting happened. I got fired after submitting my FMLA paperwork for my transition surgery.

To be honest, it is more of a laid off situation, I am currently in a probationary period and within the first six months they can let you go no matter the reason (and they never have to tell you why). I assume this means I will be able to collect unemployment, the problem being is my job during the “unemployment year” was with the department of defense and there is a slew of hoops I have to jump through.

I have never received any disciplinary comments, never had any issues that I know of. I even asked my boss last Thursday how things were and she was fine. She even talked to me on Tuesday, the day before I was “separated” and was all chatty with me on chat while I was in Phoenix.

I went into work yesterday morning, and while I dislike my job I was putting 100% into it. I sent an email in explaining I am going to need to file for FMLA, that I am getting the surgeries and will need LWOP. Within 25 minutes HR had called me in and issued me a letter saying I was being separated. 

All it quoted was the Union CBA that outlines the authority they have to release me, they don’t need cause and they don’t need to say why. The letter is dated the same day as my email too so that means they ran down to the director immediately and had her sign it.

Now, I am waiting on my unemployment decision (the hard part is I worked for the agency who handles unemployment, so this is awkward) before I make any final decisions on what to do. I may just walk away if I get my unemployment and look for a better job, or I may pursue this.

ok, there is something funny about this.

While the union agreement does cover their butts and allow them to do this, there is no way that my FMLA request for transgender services wasn’t involved since I have had no personnel issues. With that information it is actually against state law to lay out retribution for my FMLA request (and in WA state transgender care is covered under FMLA, or at least the state’s expansion of it).

That however will wait until I hear back. For now I will be anxious, begin my job searches and try and get unemployment. All the while arranging for my surgery in April. It just means more debt… However, the alternative is worse.

Rough Feeling

manager
So much truth right now

I have been kind of quiet lately. Work isn’t working out the way it was presented so now I am stuck in a job that seems about as intolerant as other jobs made me worry about. Plus now I commute 2+ hours a day, working a set shift and for $20k a year less.

It has been a disappointing experience, and I will also admit my emotions have been all over the place. I suspect it is the holidays, stress, and my damn testosterone levels keep fighting my estrogen levels leaving everything a battlefield.

That being said, I have a wonderful husband, and great family made up of people I choose. Everything is going well logically. Our finances are fine at the moment, I am going to a consult for FFS on Sunday (maybe that is also adding to my stress), we are out of debt other than car and student loans. Life is good, just my emotions are lying.

I decided I needed to kind of blog about my emotions too. I have talked about doing it privately, but I find the only time I am good about recording things is if its publicly. Maybe I am just an exhibitionist. 

So it has been a rough few weeks, I am tired and I think I am starting to feel depressed again. Although I broke that big depression and I can feel emotions and I think that is also contributing to it. So maybe it is a sign things are getting better. I had a great Thanksgiving and I will probably post about that. It is good to get positive things posted.

Things will go well (and other than the work front are going well). 

Goodbye Ghost

I had a bunch of posts I wanted to do, I have been traveling for work, hanging with husband. Sadly though Ghost had taken a turn for the worst. Yesterday he wouldn’t really get out of his blanket area except to go check out the outside when we opened the kitchen deck door (he hated outside before this apartment).

So yesterday we contacted The Good Life, the same vet that helped him a few weeks ago to have her visit today and help us say goodbye. However, Ghost will do what he wants and he passed away after we went to bed last night.

The hubby has been sweet, he tried to keep me from having to see it or deal with it. I have helped with all our other animals and while it is a lot harder to not cry right now and I appreciated his effort, it was my duty to help.

Goodbye old man cat, Mr. Pinchy, Ghost… We love you very much and I really do hope something like the rainbow bridge exists. Take care.

Prepare to be bombarded with cat pictures. We will get back to my regular thoughts after I can get back to it.

Shoes

I have never cared about my shoes, or honestly about any of my clothing. For years my spouse has struggled to buy me cool things and I would wear what he directed, but never cared at all. I hated the way I looked and that was that.

Since the transition that has changed, the further along I get, the more excited about clothing. This time its about shoes. Even when I got my Uggs I was ok with it (better than normal reaction) but I was still at beginning of my transition. However, last night the red converse my hubby sent me came and I was excited.

Shoes!

The weird part is now I want more clothing, more accessories (necklaces, bracelets, etc) and definitely more shoes. It is the first time in my life I was excited about clothing (except larping clothes, I always got excited by that).

Just thought I would share, I want a huge closet of clothes and shoes and I realize how stereotypical that is, but it is just the way it is.