How to better myself



Feb 23, 2019

I posted on the introductions forum on Saturday - basically I have come here as I have been feeling a little down about my life and I apologise in advance for the long post.

So I am a 34 female, married for a year to a devoted husband who I've known since I was 17 years old. I met him at church whilst my relationship with another boy at the time was breaking down. I am not as religious as my husband but I am flexible.

I noticed I was feeling more tired and sweaty, periods being more painful, headaches, feeling depressed and I was acting a bit more closed off in the job I was in even though I enjoyed it and so I had some blood work done. I didn't hear back so I thought all was well. I then underwent an investigation at work because of my "erratic" behaviour and was put forward for a counsellor employed by the company to support me but this appointment never surfaced.

The next time I spoke with my doctor was about 2 weeks after the blood draw and I was found to be quite unwell. I had further investigations done but received no treatment and over this period of time I became too unwell to continue in my job and applied for voluntary redundancy. Really, I just felt like I needed time off to sort myself out. This was at the end of 2012.

Future husband and I went on holiday to see my parents who leased out a villa for 8 weeks in the Mediterranean in early 2013 (mum's condition improves in sunny climate) and both parents noticed how much thinner I'd gotten due to not eating that much (my gullet had developed a stricture thus reducing my appetite and ability to swallow) My body mass index was 18.7 with healthy range at 18.7 - 32.0. At this time my parents considered me to have an eating disorder which I knew I didn't have, but they wouldn't have it any other way.

I became sicker to the point where I needed lifelong medication because my condition went untreated and my weight went even lower because of the lack of motivation to eat as well as the stricture in my gullet. I was put on disability allowance but this fell through in early 2014 because I didn't meet the full criteria and even though the assessor I saw noted that I looked tired, pale, ill and down.

Things with future husband fell apart and so we split up. I moved out of his flat in January 2015 and moved in with my parents about 20 miles away. Future husband and I remained friends until February 2015 when he said he couldn't bear to be without me. In March 2015 I found care work which I thought would suit me.

At first I handled the work quite well but in November 2015 I was assaulted by one of my clients in their home. Two weeks later my grandfather passed away in hospital which devastated me since he was my substitute father (my biological father absconded from my care when I was still a baby). He was only 71. I was hoping to get some form of compassionate leave but I was still required to do my shift and I only had time off for the funeral.

I began to feel messed about with my employer and so I switched to another provider a friend recommended in May 2016. Most days I worked nonstop from 7am until 2pm and drive home 8 miles away then drive another 8 miles back out to cover 7pm until around about 11pm before going back home again. I barely ate because I was focusing my attentions more on others than myself and my health also suffered which contributed to a lot of brain fog and an inability to retain information. This continued for 6 weeks and at the end of it I resigned.

Unfortunately my new employer was given a bad reference about me from my former one and they had to let me go immediately. I moved back in with future husband and, as I took stock of my situation, I knew that I had to do everything within my power to get myself well, healthy and "work-fit" again.

I first signed back onto the jobcentre and I then invested in a folder to document my "life goals". I didn't plan to write in it as such; for it to serve as a reminder or focal point was enough. I wrote a few goals, mainly 1. Get a job. 2. Manage my conditions. 3. Take up a course and so on and so forth.

Since I'd been attending the jobcentre frequently enough I was given the choice to undertake a vocational course in 2017. I wanted to be put forward for one since I spent pretty much the rest of the time at home with no one to talk to for as good as all the daylight hours and it would get my brain working again. I chose to take up hospitality. I passed the course and was qualified in this and I made some really good friends in the process. I could feel my confidence rising again and I was able to eat better. My body mass index was and now is around about 25 (18.7 - 32.0)

Future husband then encountered a recruitment agency and suggested I pop in and ask them about any vacancies. I registered with them and they offered me work the following day. After that contract was over I was then offered a 1 month deal and I remained there for 3 months and a week after that I was given work at another company for initially 3 months but remained there for 15 months, so until Sep 2018.

I really wanted to stay in the last role since I felt I was a perfect fit for the team and both managers said they would help me look for work. The role was to expire since processes were changing and so since I was left with the option of being left with no further work I spoke to my recruitment representative who put me forward for another vacancy in the building, on an ongoing basis with the potential for permanency.

I continued to feel guilty in leaving the other department, mainly because I felt there was no real closure and my departure was very sudden. One moment I was there and the next I was gone; but my representative reassured me about this, saying where I was before didn't and couldn't offer me anything better and he was under the illusion that the department took advantage of me but I guess I couldn't see how they were.

In Nov 2018 my former department then moved onto the same floor as my new team. At first I mainly kept my distance with them but at times it was very hard to do so when I had to go to the printer or do some paper shredding. A vacancy appeared on my former department and my former manager recommended I apply for it. I applied for that one and another on the department.

I didn't hear back about either application until New Year just gone but I secured an interview for both at the same time. I felt it went well and that I'd be told about whether or not I was successful at the end of January 2019, which came and went.

I came into work this morning (Monday 25 February) and encountered one of my former managers who coincidentally interviewed me for both roles with two unfamiliar looking people. She stopped in her tracks, stared at me and stopped talking and the two other people with her just looked at me, confused. I shifted my gaze away and looked straight ahead after looking at the floor briefly and after we passed each other she then resumed talking again. I suspected they were the new starters and I did some investigative work in checking the jobs board and finding both vacancies had been taken off. It became apparent to me they were the successful applicants.

I was beginning to feel pretty upset in not being given any feedback and so I raised my concerns with my current manager who has spoken to his own manager about my situation and they have discussed my role between themselves. They are both aware that there is just not enough work for me to be kept on for much longer but they would like to make my role being made permanent by doing telephony work. I would be trained on telephony and I would receive one-on-one coaching for two weeks. I said I would be happy to do this but my manager wants me to consider it for as long as possible.

So I am here basically to gather my thoughts if not to get some sort of understanding as to why I continue to feel so bad about my old team. I'd been with them for a long time, a lot longer than I should have been and I felt they were friends and I guess since I am in such close proximity to them I want to remain calm and professional but also confident. I have gained a lot more confidence just in remaining in employment and getting to where I am after being at such a rock-bottom level from 2015 to the end of 2016 but I feel like I have to gain even more confidence or try to be someone I'm not just to make them see that way, if that makes sense?


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