My Life as a Puddle

Creating hyperhidrosis hope and awareness one drop at a time

Tag: job search

Getting the Job I Wanted

When I got back home from visiting my grandma, I met with my friend who had created the vision statement for me. She helped me create a quadrant of pros and cons for the two jobs that were now potentially on my plate. The four sections were Big Yes, Big No, Little Yes, and Little No. She asked me several questions about both jobs that helped me to fill in each section. Once we were done, she said I had my answer to which job I really wanted, which isn’t to say that the first job I had already accepted wasn’t what I wanted. They were both good positions that were a good fit for me.

 

Then my friend said something really profound. “Why don’t you just call the second employer, Maria?” Wait, WHAT? Me? Call THEM? It never even occurred to me that I could take charge with an employer and actually fight for what I wanted as their job candidate. By calling them, I could take my worrying out of the equation. I could do everything in my power to create the result I wanted. So, we walked through what I should say when I called, and I went straight home to get the phone call out of the way. So, with sweaty hands and a wobbly voice, I left a voice mail saying I certainly didn’t want to be presumptuous, but that I was wondering if an offer was forthcoming as I had been offered another position.

 

This pro-activeness on my part got the ball rolling a bit faster on their end. It also allowed me to relax and feel like I had done all I could. Oh! I forgot to mention the part that happened before this. The day after I got home, I was sitting in church and noticed a woman a few rows in front of me who looked very familiar. I basically stalked her for the rest of the service, and when she left a few minutes early I hightailed it out of the sanctuary to follow her. She had disappeared! I decided to walk to the front entrance of the church and wait for a few minutes. Next thing I know, she’s right next to me with her son. So I stopped her and said hello. I then told her that she had interviewed me several days ago and that they were doing a reference check on me for the position. She replied that they all really liked me and that she especially enjoyed the writing samples I had provided as part of the application process. Isn’t it crazy how God works?! I don’t usually talk to “strangers”, but I couldn’t stop thinking about making contact with her once I saw her in church that day. It was a good reminder for her to see my face again.

 

So, after seeing one of the people who interviewed me at church and then making the phone call asking for what I wanted, the next day my phone rang. On the other end was the woman who would be my supervisor. She said that when she was speaking with my references, her heart was breaking when they told her about my layoff. My former boss told her that I was on the verge of a promotion and that laying me off was one of the hardest things she’s ever had to do. Well, it was one of the hardest things I’ve had to go through as well. Another of my references spoke to how I deal with failure and adversity. She used the specific example of when I was lucky number 13 on the list of only 12 who would be accepted into the Aspen Summer Words Memoir Writing Program. (I still need to blog about that, by the way.)

 

After we got all that out of the way, she offered me the job! Hallelujah and hot damn! Shockingly, I held my sh** together during this phone call. I kind of felt like crying, but I was outside facing the mountains and it was like the sky just opened up and the sunlight poured over me. The outcome I wanted was unfolding right before my eyes. I really took charge of my life over the past few weeks and felt comfortable with how I had performed in my interviews. The amped up level of my hyperhidrosis in all of those interviews was something I dealt with in the moment, but on this awesome job offer day, I was outside in the cool breeze looking west and NOT sweating.

 

I hung up the phone with a huge grin on my face, and if I didn’t care what other people thought of me half as much as I usually do, I totally would have gone to my car while sporting a John Travolta Saturday Night Fever walk. Because that is seriously the song that popped into my head when I hung up.

 

I’d like to thank every one of you for being so supportive and encouraging, and for reminding me of what I have to offer the world when there were days when I truly thought I had nothing left. A special thanks to my parents and siblings, my Young Marrieds and tea committee peeps at church for praying for me, my closest friends (you all know who you are), and to my awesome husband. He has been amazing through these last few months, picking up the additional financial responsibilities with grace and love, and telling me numerous times not to freak out (because I NEVER do that).

 

If you’re facing adversity in your life, keep fighting the good fight. Nothing lasts forever. Well, except maybe hyperhidrosis, but even that shouldn’t stop you from creating the life you want. Never stop believing in yourself. I still struggle with this, but every day I make an effort to remind myself that I am enough. So are you.

 

Here’s to stayin’ alive!


Copyright © 2012 My Life as a Puddle

Coming From a Place of Yes

Since I had left all of my job interviews and worries behind when I went to visit my grandma, I was able to begin some forward thinking and visualization of what I wanted my life to look like when I got home. Rather than telling the universe what I didn’t want, I chose to tell it what I did want.

 

My mom and I did some shopping while we were visiting. I bought a new messenger bag for my new job that I didn’t yet have. I also bought a few new clothes that were business dress appropriate. As one of my friends would say, “Forward thinking, young grasshopper!” So that’s exactly what I did. Just because you don’t yet have what you want or need doesn’t mean that you can’t guide yourself into achieving it. Just like I don’t have a cure for my hyperhidrosis, I can think toward the future and do the best I can with what I’ve been given.

 

The next day, my lovely aunt contributed to my unemployment fund by donating her services to cut and highlight my hair. She owns her own salon and is ridiculously talented at what she does. I went into the salon wanting a change. My thinking was New Year, New Job, New ‘Do. What a difference a good haircut makes! My confidence improved so much from an hour at the salon. Of note, I usually sweat when I go and get my hair cut, especially when the blow drying begins and I’m trapped underneath the cape. That’s always fun. If I’m getting my hair done in the summer, I can never wear sandals or flip flops because all the hair that’s trimmed off will stick to my feet when it falls. Not a fan of hairy feet!

 

The next day, I got a phone call. The company I had submitted the marketing plan to offered me the job! I accepted immediately, as I didn’t really need to think about it. I didn’t think I’d be offered any other jobs, so why wouldn’t I accept their offer? I had thought about the position and felt it was a good fit. If you know me personally, I feel things very deeply and also wear my heart on my sleeve. This can be good and bad. So, what does touchy, feely me do after hanging up the phone? Cry. It was such a relief to know I no longer had to worry about or fight for a job. So, combine my tears with the fact that I just got off a rather important phone call, and I was sweating. I went downstairs and told my family the good news.

 

It was nice to receive happy news before my grandma’s next round of chemotherapy two days later. I thought I was pretty much okay emotionally regarding this, but once we got to the hospital for her infusion of poison I had a really hard time holding my sh** together. (Um, yeah. Did I mention I tend to use profanity at times? I’m kind of a language-oriented person if you didn’t already know. Sometimes you just need a cuss word to round out a sentence.) I was in the room when the nurse opened the port in my grandma’s chest. My mom left for that part, but I decided to stay. It was the least I could do considering what my grandma was going through. She squeezed my hand as the nurse inserted the needle, and I didn’t even allow myself to go through the inner monologue of Super, my hand is dripping wet and she’s holding it. It was so not about that in that moment.

 

After awhile, my uncle came to the hospital, and I met him in the lobby. That’s when I really freaked out. I was crying and pondering why were we doing this? Was it going to affect her quality of life and be worth it in the long run? My grandma is in her early 80s for crying out loud! But she has always had a choice, and she wanted to try the chemo. We’ve all told her that one round is better than none, two is better than one, etc. If at any time she wants to tell the chemo to take a hike, she can do so. My grandma is one tough lady, and I’ve never heard her complain.

 

It’s important to come from a place of yes in your life. (I’m actually reading a book right now by Bethenny Frankel called A Place of Yes. She is hysterical, by the way. I love her show Bethenny Ever After on the Bravo network.) Like attracts like, so by acting like I had a job already it made sense that I bought a new messenger bag and clothes. It made sense that I got a new haircut. It made sense that yes, I love my grandma and was there to support her and hold her hand. It makes sense that my grandma has a choice of whether to say yes to chemo or yes she’d like to stop. How often are you saying No in your life and attracting what you don’t want? Be able to turn whatever it is that you’re facing into a Yes.

 

Yes, I have hyperhidrosis and it makes my life harder. But yes, I can work with what I’ve got and make it work for me to the best of my ability.


Copyright © 2012 My Life as a Puddle

Sweaty Job Interviews (part 1)

53 applications. That’s how many jobs I’ve applied for in the last 3 months. You should see the spreadsheet I created to keep track of all of them in case I am audited by the Department of Labor while I collect unemployment benefits. It’s even color coded: red for stop/no, green for proceed/yes, white for haven’t heard a thing. I was able to get my foot in the door for interviews with 5 companies, a feat in and of itself considering the level of competition for jobs vs the number of openings there are.

My first interview was for a technical writer position. I started getting ready several hours in advance so that I wouldn’t feel rushed. If I feel rushed, my sweating becomes much worse, and it’s automatically much worse anyway if I’m getting ready for an interview. It was the middle of November when I had this interview, yet I still used a fan on the floor of the bathroom as I was getting ready. Between my blow dryer and flat iron, it gets a bit warm in there. My hands were sweating as I applied my makeup, too, so I had a hand towel on the sink to wipe my fingers off in between dabs of my foundation. After the beauty routine was over (I swear, life would be so much easier if I were a dude), next came the dreaded business attire. Bleck. It makes me sweat just thinking about it. I hate dress clothes, but they are a necessary evil when it comes to job interviews.

So, I get dressed in my pants suit and go to put on my dress socks and shoes. It’s a struggle to get my socks on, as my feet are already dripping. Somehow I manage and then put my shoes on. It’s probably only 40-something degrees outside as I drive to the interview, but I’ve taken off my suit jacket and am driving with just my short sleeve shirt on and the cool air blasting from the AC vents, which are strategically angled directly on my hands as they grip the steering wheel (which has an absorbent cover on it) and on my feet. I arrive about 20 minutes early, again because of the whole rushing scenario and because you should be a few minutes early to an interview.

I sit in my car for a few minutes and review the copy of the job description, my resume, and my portfolio containing samples of my work. Since this is my first interview in 4 years, I’m pretty nervous and trying not to focus on the fact that I’m pretty annoyed I’ve been placed in this situation to begin with. I’ve been taken out of my comfort zone, laid off, and now I’m supposed to go inside and act like life’s great and put on a happy face? Yes, I’m totally playing the victim scenario in my head for the few minutes I’m sitting in the car, and that’s okay. I’m pretty sure that’s normal.

When I had the phone interview for this position, the woman told me that it wouldn’t be a typical job interview, that the owner of the company basically liked to talk about himself and what he’s created with his company and not ask too many questions of the interviewee. So, I was prepared to listen, which was good. And listen, I did. Your life speaks to you in whispers. Pay attention to those whispers so they don’t have to turn into pebbles, or bricks, or brick walls before you finally get it. When the VP of the company said to me, “So and so will bite your head off if she doesn’t like what you’ve done, and if you’re working on something with her you won’t leave until it’s done. But she’s a really great resource if you have any questions…”, I took that as a sign of what it would be like to work there. There is certainly no perfect work environment, but I don’t thrive when I’m told things like that, or am warned that most of their employees are Type A and will bite your head off in company-wide meetings if they don’t like what you’re presenting. It was a very linear-thinking environment, which makes sense considering what they do there. Lesson learned. They offered me the job, but I turned it down. I didn’t want to accept a job out of fear that it was the only offer I’d get. I didn’t want to settle just to get a paycheck.

Stay tuned. Next I’ll be discussing the awesome set of interviews I had with the next company. I got to educate them about hyperhidrosis!


Copyright © 2012 My Life as a Puddle

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