Category Archives: Ramblings
What about the Victim?
Pittsburgh news has been inundated with stories surrounding the death of Canonsburg police officer, Scott Bashioum. While his death was a tragic and senseless one, little has been mentioned in the news about any services for the other victim of this senseless crime, Dalia Sabae, and her unborn child.
Ms. Sabae had filed protection from abuse (PFA) orders against her husband on more than one occasion. An active PFA prohibits the abuser from owning any firearms. However, the now-deceased abuser husband had access to firearms for hunting, according to his family, who stated to news sources that “they never thought something like this would happen.” Family, friends, neighbors are always the first to be surprised when they learn what happens behind closed doors.
Ms. Sabae was three months pregnant at the time of her unfortunate death. The final hours of her life (and her baby’s) were most likely terrifying with threats and probable violence at the hands of her abuser. A piece of paper (the PFA) couldn’t and wouldn’t save her life from a violent man.
More needs to be done to enforce PFAs. More needs to be done to get (and keep) partners away from abusive partners and get them safely out of and away from abusive relationships. As a domestic violence survivor (previous life; I don’t talk about it), it is upsetting to me that another woman has lost her life at the hands of a violent man. Mr. Bashioum certainly deserves the recognition for his dedicated service as a police officer, but what about the domestic violence victim?
Shit Week and Hard Decisions!
What is it about the month of March?
If you follow me on twitter, you may know that I had some car issues on Tuesday. (Allow me to mention here that the car passed inspection on the prior Friday the 13th!) On my way to work Tuesday morning, as I stepped on the gas to accelerate up a hill, my transmission slipped into neutral. My first thought (after OH SHIT!) was what the hell was that and why did it happen? The car sat in my parking lot and I had hoped that it would settle/improve for the ride home.
No such luck!
The ride home Tuesday night was more of the same. The car slipped into neutral numerous times on the way home. So many times that I actually called the ex-husband to ask him to show me where my transmission fluid was so I could check it. I stopped at his place of work, we checked the fluid (it was fine), and I continued my commute home. The car slipped out of gear two more times on the short drive home.
On Wednesday, I drove to the park n ride to take the trolley to work. I called my normal garage as soon as I got there and explained the problem. They told me I could bring the car by on Thursday. I was able to leave work early on Wednesday to get the car to the garage. The car slipped out of gear so many times that I ended up driving most of the way in first gear!
I get the “bad news call” from my garage at 3 PM on Thursday. They tell my that my transmission is bad. My options are either to get a rebuilt transmission for $3,000 that would come with a 3 year/100,000 mile warranty OR go with a used transmission that would come with a 30 day guarantee. Dilemma #1!
I place a call to another garage who specializes in transmissions. The owner talks me into a second opinion. My plan is to have my car towed there for them to evaluate.
Moving on to Friday. I go into work early because I want to leave early. I meet the tow truck driver and watch my baby get loaded onto a flatbed. This sounds weird, but it made me really sad to see my car loaded on the flatbed!
Moving on to today, Saturday. I have appointments at two car dealerships. I’m interested in a Toyota RAV4 and a Hyuandi Elantra. While I am at the Toyota dealership, the transmission garage calls to say that he thinks I need a new solenoid and the work would be $450. Dilemma #2! What to do, what to do? I tell him to go ahead with the work, hoping that it will allow me to physically drive the car to a dealership for evaluation to trade it in.
I test drove both the RAV4 and the Elantra. Each has options that I really like. The monthly price difference is around $100 (with the RAV4 being more expensive). Toyota would give me a decent trade in sight unseen. Hyuandi wants to evaluate the vehicle.
Transmission garage says work should be done on Monday. I’m hoping to pick up my car after work and drive it to both dealerships to see what the trade in offers will be. I’m hoping for the trade to be enough of a down payment but I’m prepared to throw some cash as well if I need to. I have a payment figure in my head that I would be comfortable with. I’d love to drive an SUV again, but the car is roomy, has more features, gets great gas mileage, and isn’t as expensive. Dilemma #3!
Smart me thinks I should be careful and go with the lower payment and get the car. Impulsive me wants to go with the SUV. And they’re both so pretty!
Should I flip a coin? Draw straws? Throw pictures in a hat? It’s been ages since I’ve had to make such a large financial decision. I need some level-headed opinions to talk me through this!
They’re both SO pretty!
As my last post noted, I was offered and accepted a position in another department at the Evil Empire (but I’ll be switching employers). While both my current administrator and one of my physicians took the news well, everyone else I told reacted in almost the same way.
Me: “I wanted to let you know that I’m leaving the department.”
I explained that I hadn’t been actively looking, but that I learned about the opening via social media.
I tried explaining that I had been offered a great opportunity with excellent benefits.
One very dear co-worker teared up. She peppered me with many questions as she tried to wrap her head around the news. She questioned whether it was time for her retire.
Sure, I thought I had another 20 years in this department and was pretty convinced that I’d retire from here. There really is nowhere for me to go within the Department. As I observe others moving on to other (and possibly better) opportunities, I have frequently questioned myself. Should I stay where I am because I know what I’m doing? Or should I challenge myself with something new? Sure, it’s nice for others to know that they can always call me with questions or for help on who to call, but do I really want to feel like my job is stagnant? The “reformed” position I was promised a few years back never did become a reality. There are concerning issues looming in the future. Two of my physicians are nearing retirement. While this is a really bad time for me to leave my current position, this really is the best time for me to make a change.
While it was a very difficult decision to leave the comfort and flexibility of my current position, I am nervous and excited for this new opportunity. Only one more week before I start!
Gah! Which Way?
I’ve found myself at a crossroads and I don’t know which direction to take.
A few weeks ago, I saw a tweet asking if anyone was looking for an administrative position. Knowing this person worked at a local university, I asked if the position was with the university. The reply was “yes,” so I took the conversation out of the public view. I made a few inquiries about the position, the department, and the people, and whether I could confidentially share my resume. I was asked to officially apply and was scheduled for an initial interview which went well enough that I was scheduled for a second interview to be held with the department Chair the following week.
I didn’t stress at all about the first interview. It truly helps to interview for a job when you have a job. The second interview, however, was a completely different story. The more I read about the Chair, the more nervous I got as my interview time came closer. By the time we sat down to talk, I was a nervous rambling mess. The interview went so quickly, I thought for sure I blew it.
Moving on to the next week, I begin to resign myself to the fact that I blew the second interview and that they were moving forward with another candidate. And then I get the email: You are our finalist and we need your permission to talk with your current administrator. I, of course, need to talk to him first to let him know that this call is coming. I am surprised that he actually encourages me and things it would be a good move for me.
[I should probably also throw in some background that I’ve been fortunate to have only two employers in my lifetime and have 27+ years in my current department.]
Moving forward to this week, I hear from two of my references that they were contacted. That leaves just one more reference for them to hear from … the main physician I support who is only at our location on Fridays. Late in the afternoon, he calls me into his office to tell me that he had a message and asks me how much do I want the job. Awkwardly, I explain that I haven’t received an offer yet, but that it might be a good opportunity. I apologize for not giving him a heads up about it (I didn’t realize they would contact the references my application rather than the references I had provided on paper).
So moving forward to tonight, I can’t stop thinking about what I am going to do. Do I stay in my current position, where I have built good working relationships with my physicians, where I know my job, and I have autonomy and flexibly? Or do I take a leap of faith at the new position, which will be a promotion, have better University benefits, and will take me in a different direction.
As I recently joked “I don’t do well with disconnecting.” But I keep telling myself that I need to think about what’s best for me and what’s best for my kids. I just need to figure out what that “best” is.
Are You Fucking Kidding Me? The Office Edition
Happy Monday folks!
A co-worker shared with my cubemate that she got engaged over the weekend.
FOUR MONTHS TO THE DAY OF WHEN THEY STARTED DATING!
Yep, that’s right. I said four months to the day of when they started dating.
D A T I N G !
Co-worker is older and has never been married. She and her new fiance recently decided to move in together, even though she just bought a new townhouse last Spring. She has made comments that “he better put a ring on it” when she talks about her upcoming move into his house.
Are you ready for this? He was engaged to another woman not too long ago, and I believe it may have been over last Summer (2013). I don’t know the details about their split, but I do know that relationship was a long-distance (different states) one.
Granted, my cynical bitch side has eyerolled all day about this news. It’s exciting when people choose to commit to building a life together with someone. Having been married, divorced, and a few unsuccessful relationships under my belt, I don’t have any desire to remarry nor do I have a timeline of how a relationship should progress. But isn’t four months really quite fast?
[I realize when you know you want to spend the rest of your life with someone, you know it. I just don’t know that things should be so rushed. (says the woman whose on and off relationship hasn’t changed much AT ALL over the past six years, ahem)]
I’ve read that “forgiveness is not something we do for OTHER PEOPLE. It is something we do for OURSELVES to be able to move forward.”
But for me, forgiveness is one of those ‘easier said than done’ tasks. If you’re one who tends to hold grudges (I am), how do you let go of the wrongs and move on, especially when trust is involved? How do you move forward when the guilty party hasn’t found the courage to talk with you directly about the issues that caused the distrust in the first place?
I don’t struggle with thoughts of forgiveness when I’m committed to hibernating at home. When I’m home alone, I can stew in my angry thoughts. I run into trouble when paths cross socially.
I’m trying to figure out just what exactly I want and whether I can let go. If I expect others to change and grow as a person, I should challenge myself to do the same.
Day 30: A Day of Being Productive
I can’t believe we’re at the last day of November.
Since the kids and I went to a movie on Thanksgiving and they went over the ex’s early, I didn’t bother cooking my turkey on Thanksgiving Day. I cooked it today instead and it turned out beautiful!
I also managed to get out early this morning to pick up groceries. Yay, we can eat for a week!
I also stopped at Busy Beaver to pick up some plastic to cover my living room windows. I spent the afternoon hanging the plastic and a set of mini blinds on the windows. Wow, what a difference! There is no longer a cold breeze on my neck when I’m sitting in my chair!
Tomorrow, I am going to try to rustle up some Christmas spirit and hopefully start my Christmas decorating. And I still have cookies to make and decorate. And I have Christmas cards to address and mail. So much to do!
I must say, I do like this week’s work three days with five days off. I know I’ll enjoy my Sunday a little better knowing that I don’t have to go to work on Monday. (Sorry, just a little gloat about that.)
Day 27: Pre-Turkey Day Eve
It’s the night before Thanksgiving.
My bird is thawing in the fridge. Kids are full of pizza and hoagie. I’m full of pizza and wine. I’ll be cooking tomorrow, but not for a crowd nor even a sit down meal. My initial plan was to go to a movie by myself tomorrow, but now I’m going with the kids to see Frozen. After the movie, I’ll likely drop them at their dad’s after the movie. Then I’m free until I meet up with friends for drinks later. And I’m hoping to get my drink on later! [I am way overdue.]
It will be an interesting Thanksgiving for me. I found out a cousin passed away this past weekend. Tomorrow would have been my dad’s 68th birthday. I have a bazillion cookies I need to make for Christmas gifts.
So if you’re reading tonight, happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.
Day 26: Horoscope Tweets
I fell down the twitter horoscope hole this afternoon.
It all started when I saw this tweet:
I do admit to this. I do prefer things to be done my way and on my timeline. Honestly, though, I do try to reign this quirk in when dealing with kids and friends.
Of course, I had to click on their entire timeline. A few favorites:
I’m not really hard to please as long as you do it my way and on my timeline. 😉
I would suck in politics. I hate BS and stories and lies, etc.
I’m struggling with this right now.
I have read before that I am more compatible with other water signs. I’ll certainly be keeping this in mind when exploring new relationships.
I know horoscopes are crap, but these are just a few horoscope tweets that caught my eye today.
Day 25: Working from Home
So on one of the coldest days of the season so far (it was 20* outside yesterday), I discovered after a day of baking that my furnace was not working correctly. The thermostat was set for 70, yet the inside temperature was 63. A quick call to the landlord got me the name of their HVAC company and permission to call them first thing this morning. I sent off an email to my supervisor and co-worker to tell them of the problem and request that I work from home while waiting for the service call.
The repairman showed up pretty quickly this morning after receiving a call from my landlady to authorize the call and a call from me to request a service all. Landlady was concerned as I wasn’t getting any heat last night when I talked to her. The furnace seemed to kick on around 7 last night and seemed to work ok, but this morning I woke up to an inside temperature of 63 again. I almost considered going to work, but I’m glad I didn’t.
Turns out that the furnace’s safety feature was kicking of the distribution of heat. The serviceman asked when I last replaced the filter and I told him a little over a month ago when I turned the furnace on for the season. Apparently, higher-end filters attract more dust/dirt and should be replaced monthly. That was news to me!
Repairman was gone by 10. I thought for a minute about getting changed and heading into work, but then talked sense into myself. I would lose two hours of work if I did that, so I sat back down at my makeshift desk (the dining room table) and got back to work. Unfortunately, I couldn’t print anything I wanted to work on, so I was swapping windows all day! At 2:30, I signed off and headed out to pick up Social Diva from school (since it’s so cold). A quick check of emails when I returned, and I am done for the day.
Unlike most of our departmental personnel, I think I actually work harder and longer when allowed to work from home! I need to negotiate on being able to work from home more often.