Thursday, July 11, 2019

Focus on My Mental Health - pt. 19 - The Next Interview

     Actually all of this happened yesterday so I'm a bit behind on my keeping this updated.  But then again, things have been kind of a rollercoaster this week and it's not going to slow down for the next week or so I fear.  So, given that, I thought I'd sit down and ponder how my mental state is doing currently and what I'm hoping will happen during the rest of July.

     Firstly, I finally had another phone interview and I thought it went fairly well.  Because of the holiday (4th) happening the next week I was told not to expect any news right away and it was okay with me because I had a lot of things going.  I had some D&D campaigns to play in and run, had some 4th of July plans, although no company, which was a mixed blessing as it was nice and relaxing but also felt 'off' somehow since we were by ourselves for the first time in awhile with no parties, cook-outs or family visitors.
     Then the 4th came and went and very soon after I found out that they were going to be bringing me in for an in-person interview the following week, so I was pretty excited about it.  At least until anxiety brain kicked in off and on and I couldn't sleep that first day (it got better once it was scheduled and in place for nearly a week later).  Anxiety brain would pop up from time to time but I'd remind myself that there was no use worrying about it when I had so many other things that needed to be worked on.
     So a cookout the Saturday after the 4th, followed by a D&D game where my players literally did the thing I thought they would: abandoned the city to destruction by an unknown force that was most likely their own doing (or rather, by ignoring it, will ultimately cause it's destruction).  They simply said, "eh, not a dragon, not our problem, we're out!"  So, just as I had expected, I created their exit story and over a week later they're in a cool new city they're ready to explore next week.  I'm really looking forward to writing more of that story because I have some ideas for it - and also all of the things that will be happening elsewhere in the world as they're completely ignoring the things that are going on in the world to pursue their own selfish desires.  HA!
   
     Skip forward to the next day which began my trip to Michigan to visit my mother for a few days.  It got cut a bit short because of the interview on Wednesday scheduled.  Mostly because of my anxiety over interviews and traveling when there's something scheduled.  I keep thinking "what if my car breaks down on the way home?  If I leave too late I'll never get any sleep for the interview!"  And you know, all of the other things.  Plus, being home really stresses me out anyway because my Mom has no money for upkeep of the house so it's just slowly degrading year after year.  I do a few things like keep branches off the roof, leaves out of the gutters and try to drag some garbage from the basement...
     See, my mom won't admit to being a hoarder, but she's really super borderline.  And I understand she doesn't have a lot of money but being frugal and being a hoarder really are two separate things.  She's not frugal.  She buys things for decorations and then the old d├ęcor just gets thrown in a spare room, closet or basement and then stays there.  For example, I found an old bathroom curtain and rod - both had been completely replaced some two or three years ago - sitting in the basement.  The curtain was old and plastic and could never be used again, and yet, there it sat in a corner.
     Boxes were growing black mold from the multiple floods down there, and they remained untouched.  When I'd go to throw something out she'd ask, "Could that be sold?  What about donated?"  It's covered in mildew...so, no.  Four garbage bags this trip before my sinuses (I'm fairly certain the dust and mold will eventually give me asthma) couldn't take it and I gave up.  She'll take them out to the road but I have yet to actually see any changes in the basement between trips to her house.  Six months will go by, I'll ask her just to take ONE bag up...deal with ONE pile... and instead it just grows worse and worse.
     And she wonders why I don't want to visit.  The house itself upstairs would fool someone as she keeps it relatively clean.  But you can see the paint peeling on the ceilings, the carpets are starting to wear down, there are bowing portions and missing shingles on the roof that I try to repair but I know at least one spot is too far gone... and I have no idea how long that house is going to remain livable.
     So usually when I'm there I want to just leave the house and go places, and that's usually what we do.  But I'm without a job (hopefully not too much longer!  I'm getting to it!) and she's in so much debt now that her credit card bounced a few times while we were out... so then I feel doubly bad that I can't help my mom out with this money problem.  But she's done it to herself and when she gets really upset she lashes out and blames my brother and myself.  First off, I paid rent once I got out of college (which she made me finish, so okay, there's that, but I had to work my way through it) and my brother didn't work and then had a bunch of student debt so she didn't really ask him to pay for much - although I guess he paid for some things while he was still at home.
     But she really never stressed how bad off we were.  I tried to quit college to work more and I tried to get her to work, but she had one episode and quit her job and it was years before she went back to working.  And mostly I just tried my best to just find a way to get out.  It wasn't exactly for selfish reasons either, it was because I thought if I wasn't contributing to the problem, things would get better and maybe my brother would start contributing more (boy was I wrong).  But, I digress, this wasn't really about me getting away, but it is about why it's so uncomfortable being at my old home any more.
     A year or so before I completed college I'd actually had the basement cleaned up.  We'd started to hold gaming meetings in the basement of my mom's house because we had large tables built (initially for a huge train set my father had put together for us and we stripped apart for table-top gaming) so we had to have a clean space.  So, around 2001 or so we had it organized, cleaned up, and ready for company.  Even after that my brother helped her clean out the garage so she could hold garage sales.  (She has never had one to my knowledge)  So between those two things, when I'm at her house I just remember how clean everything was and how all she had to do was leave it clean...

     I came home on Tuesday.  She tried to keep me longer but I headed out around 10am and got home four or five hours later after making a couple stops for lunch and driving breaks.  It was really good to get back home to stop worrying about my old house and my mother and her debt, and start back to worrying about my interview.

     Having gone shopping while I was up at my old home (again, remember not spending a lot of time AT the house) I had my clothes picked out and then proceeded to worry and clean the house while I was worrying about everything.
     But Wednesday came and I got to the interview on time - early even - the interviewer was actually late getting back from lunch which made me start to doubt myself a bit (I've been completely forgotten about for interviews in the past as I blended in...?  I don't know) but eventually we got started and the next couple hours flew by pretty quickly and only as I was walking back to my car did I realize that I'd missed a bunch of opportunities and hoped no one would think less of me for not asking certain questions...
     Anxiety brain, remember?
     But I got a whole lot of stuff done yesterday after the interview - working on the garden, watering outside, doing some cleaning, washing the bed sheets...  When anxiety brain kicks in, I find a bunch of stuff to try to keep it occupied.
   
     Haven't heard anything today, rather hoped I would but knew that they were doing more interviews so I remain patient since it didn't feel like I'd done anything super wrong at the job.  I thought I had a pleasant voice during the phone portion and could follow their software without much issue, so that's always a plus.  I just hope that I wasn't too unprofessional because I just don't know what people are looking for nowadays.

     So, now I wait.  And I anxiety it out and I cleaned the house (again) and I did more painting and I got all of my facebook page posts scheduled for the weekend and I'm just about to start getting ready for my weekend plans and I'm trying to just relax.  If it doesn't happen, it doesn't happen... and I've got so much stuff going in July and the beginning of August I'll almost be relieved to not hear anything for a little bit...so we'll see I guess!


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