Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Life in "Blog" - Continued

As expected, I have returned again less than a week later.  It turns out that once I've written a blog entry, I continue to think in "blog".  So here I am.

I have a new job.  This job took me a solid six weeks to find and it ended up being a job I didn't even apply for.  I guess two weeks in the hospital + a two week extension on a paper + six weeks of job finding = ten weeks longer than I'd originally given myself to start working = a mild form of panicky desperation.  Thus, when  I received two "sorry-no-job-but-on-the-bright-side-you-were-the-runner-up" phone calls on the same day, I did tell one of the two employers that I would take his much-lower-pay call center position instead, just so I would be working at all.

In reality, it didn't go quite like that.  I agreed to come into the office to allow them to persuade me to accept their other position, since they claimed they liked me so much and really wanted me "on board".  They bargained quite well, and when they promised 1) to start me at a higher rate than their other callers, 2) to move me into administration/management in just a couple months as they continued to grow and 3 [and this was the kicker]) to allow me to continue interviewing for other positions even while I was working for them - I did, I agreed to come in and spend my days calling the clients of various State Farm Insurance agents to set up appointments to review their current policies.  [If you have State Farm policies, beware.  I'll probably be calling you tomorrow].  My first pay check was a beautiful sight, as the next one will be. Unfortunately, I have to put up with some fairly stressful tedium to get it.  On the other hand, it comes nowhere near comparing with the tedium of my summer in California when I was doing lonely data entering for a medical machinery company.  And I really like the owners and managers of the company, as well as most of the kids who work there.  It is probably the best environment I could imagine for a call center.

Additionally, I was helping my boss interview other call center candidates
on my first day of work.  That was promising.  Here's hoping to more 
responsibility in the weeks (instead of months) to come!

In other news, tonight I was supposed to go to a "girls' night out" with some of the girls in my church congregation.  They were really sweet to invite me, since I'm still pretty new. They were going to go eat sushi and talk and laugh and get to know each other better. 

I chickened out.

It was a long and early day at work and I was so tired by the time I came home.  I felt far too over-stimulated....something about the ringing of the phone in your ears all day... I have also been feeling out of control at work.  Persuasion has never been my brightest quality, and even though we're just asking well-established clients to meet with their agents about policies they already own, the masses of the world seem to be ridiculously "busy".  A little persuasion is, therefore, helpful.  Part of my problem is that I know in my nagging inner-self that if someone called me, I probably would decline too.  Confidence gone.  

I am usually a very confident person and I usually feel very in control.  In the last few weeks I have discovered that it takes a lot of my energy to survive eight hours of shifting control.  So yes, I was physically tired from my early wake-up call, but honestly, I wasn't prepared emotionally to be social with a dynamic group of strangers.  It just would have been a few more hours of feeling out of control.

Instead, I took a girl's night IN.  Dave was out tutoring this evening, so I came home and made myself a personal pan of German Pancakes.  Heaven.  I laid on the floor and listened to "Impossible Dream" from Man of La Mancha about five times.  I memorized the words - do you think if I sing it to my children every night of their growing-up years they will actually believe the message?:

To dream the impossible dream
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow
To run where the brave dare not go

To right the unrightable wrong
To love pure and chaste from afar
To try when your arms are too weary
To reach the unreachable star

This is my quest
To follow that star
No matter how hopeless
No matter how far

To fight for the right
Without question or pause
To be willing to march into Hell
For a heavenly cause

And I know if I'll only be true
To this glorious quest
That my heart will lie peaceful and calm
When I'm laid to my rest

And the world will be better for this
That one man, scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage

To reach the unreachable star  

And for your listening pleasure:

I love that.  So much.  

The other thing tonight (and during my lunch and mid-shift breaks)?  A religious book by M. Catherine Thomas.  It was on my shelf, but I'm not sure where I got it.  Possibly as a gift from someone in my mother's congregation, since they threw me a book shower pre-wedding?  Anyway, I decided to explore it, and I have been very impressed.  She has given me so much to think about theologically, which is something I learned to love doing during my Master's program.  Her topics are deeply reverent and profound and have given me much to ponder about my own spiritual life.  In addition, I have been delighted by her writing voice.  Her choice of words astounds me, and I find myself rolling her phrases over and over in my mind, testing the words she uses and falling in love with them.  I have never read an author who could choose so words so surprisingly, yet so descriptively and accurately.  

Some brief examples:

"The power to 'see' is already in us, but may be blocked by our spiritual inexperience and meager trust.

"I could accept what comes with greater trust, quiet, even gratitude."

Speaking of the fore-ordained reasons for the all-encompassing weaknesses of mortal man, she says, "So, if we find that we have a sturdy Natural Man, that is to be expected."  

One of my favorites:

"The fretful Seeker knows that the fallen world is not all there is; his searches make him aware of glories that lie just beyond his perception, and his restiveness drives him on to penetrate the veil. He often finds the path obscure, fraught with conundrums, and the opposition to his transformation insuperable.  Life can seem a hopeless tangle."  

According to one of my very favorite books, Team of Rivals, about the life of Abraham Lincoln and his political peers, Lincoln spent much of his young life listening to long, dramatic tales that his father would tell to the other men in the boarding house.  The young Abe would savor the words spoken and memorize their patterns, discovering for himself which words sounded good together, which words had emotive power and how to assemble those words to best resonate with an audience.  It wasn't by accident that the President Lincoln was such a successful public speaker.  

Thomas's book is becoming my Lincoln story collection.  I feel like I have to read every page four times: three times to ponder the theological significance of Thomas's words, and once to catch every marvelous turn of phrase.  She is a brilliant writer, and I have been inspired by her as I have never been inspired by a writer before.       

In final news, I found out today that my Cambridge college is issuing me a 300 pound check - reimbursement for a deposit that was apparently paid as part of my first payment installation.  I hadn't remembered that any part of that money was to be returned.  I am so grateful for these little tender mercies!      

1 comment:

Joyous said...

Amy, I sure like you. I LOVE "The Impossible Dream." I helped Joey memorize it on one of our early dates.

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