One big, glaring flaw in my personality has begun to rise to the surface more frequently than I would like to admit. Maybe it's not really part of my personality, per se....I guess it would be better characterized as my "flesh," my human sin nature. And on many occasions at work recently, following quick, unforeseen outbursts of my wicked, short temper, I have had to stop, pause, and repent.
The pressure at work has not lessened any. It has simply become more manageable as we have fallen into a routine and begun to accept that insanely busy days are the "new normal" for our office. I am a reasonable person. I ask intelligent questions. I do my job to the best of my ability. I can deal with crabby customers and make the difficult phone calls that nobody else wants to make. But it has been a long summer. And every now and then, my niceties buckle. Aggression takes over. And I, ever so sweetly, tell the snippy City of Wheat Ridge employee that her customer service skills essentially suck. Or when the City of Lakewood threatens to take legal action against our company because we didn't know we had to pull a siding permit in addition to our roofing permit, I argue with the guy and stand up in my company's defense until he backs down and admits that he is overreacting. When our subcontractor comes to pick up his Friday check, I make him wait by the front desk. For an hour. Because he still hasn't gotten the repairs completed that I asked him to do a week ago. I am becoming bolder. I'm becoming more confrontational. It's necessary, but I'm not sure I like it.
I just want people to know that I'm not an idiot. I don't like being told by co-workers that my desk is a mess; I don't like being told by customers that I do a poor job of invoicing. Defensiveness builds within me. I want to know how they would do if they were in my position. I want to know if they could do any better. I want to stop being judged. I am human, but I am smart. I am operating via God's grace. And I am literally doing the very best that I can, short of eating, sleeping, and breathing roofs.
Another struggle is workplace ethics. One of our employees broke his leg a few weeks ago. He was wrestling a friend while drunk... Yeah, really classy. But I have been instructed by him to tell people that he fell off a ladder (apparently because it sounds more professional). So anyway, this sweet-as-apple-pie direct mail girl named Amy calls me once a week just to see how Brandon is holding up.
"Oh, bless his heart! How did he break his leg?" she asks, in her sweet southern accent.
"He, um, fell off a ladder," I lie.
"No kidding! Oh, those ladders are soooo dangerous! My father-in-law fell off a ladder and broke his neck!" She goes on to tell me the details of his injury and how it's a miracle that he has returned to normal life. Then, "So was he going up or going down? How far did he fall?"
I am in so deep. There's no turning back now. I have to keep up my end of the lie. I've lied about this situation so much, at his request, that I have begun to picture him falling off the ladder; I have literally constructed the situation in my imagination. But I know it's wrong. I am still mulling over this one and whether or not I should come clean with her...
I found out this week that Rick, my boss when we lived in Montana, finally lost his fight with cancer. It made me so, so sad. I shared an office with him when he found out he had cancer and began chemo treatments six years ago. I watched him get so worn down, and I helped to lighten his workload back then. But I never actually thought he'd die. I was a brand-new working mom, dealing with all those emotions, and he used to talk my ear off with all his advice on parenting, marriage, and life itself. And I listened. I learned from him, and I still think about his advice from time to time. He was just the neatest guy.
It's hard to believe that October is almost over. We had Ryley's first-quarter parent/teacher conference and were told that "Ryley brings a lot of spunk to the classroom." Yes, well. She brings a lot of spunk to her life. :-)
The other day, I opened up an Internet window with my blog so that I could catch up on the posts of family and friends, via the links over to the left. Ryley walked into the office and started reading aloud my previous post about the funny things she says.
"Oh, no!" she said. "Why did you put that on there? I'm angry with you. Now people can know all about my life!"
All about it indeed.... ;-)
Ryan fell asleep in the office chair, so Ryley decided to make him a little more comfy:
Trip to the nursery to pick out our pumpkins:
This is Ryley's reaction to getting pumpkin goo unexpectedly on her hand:
The tears were so many that we almost had to stop. She eventually got over it, but kept running to the sink to wash her hands every two minutes.
She enjoys a cookie while Daddy carves...
The finished product!!
happy birthday to us
3 weeks ago