|I've always believed God purposely places seemingly insurmountable challenges in our life. He does this for a variety of reasons, but it's always for our own good. We grow more patient, faithful, or compassionate to name a few.
Life's challenges can also show us our weaknesses, so we are forced to turn to God for strength we could never possess without him.
God has thrown a challenge at me that has in part exacerbated my body's normal reaction to stress -- hives. Yay.
This particular challenge came in the form of a new co-worker.
I think I'm an easy person to get along with. I can think of only three people in my entire life who I absolutely could not stand being in the same room with. It used to be two until this guy came along.
I am an optimist by nature, so I tend to look at the positive in almost any situation, no matter how dark. This guy, is the opposite. He is never happy, and when it turns out there is absolutely nothing to get pissed or frustrated about, he'll find something. It's an astonishing gift he has in finding shadows in the brightest of sunlight.
Okay, a bit of background.
He was hired as a surveyor starting last summer. For the most part, his work itself is above reproach. He often finds section or property corners I neither asked for or expected him to find.
After a few months, there was a lot of tension developing between him, our bosses and other engineers in the office. I decided to take the incentive and told everyone all surveys must go through me. Tell me what needs to be done, and I will give that information to the New Guy.
It's helped some, but instead of hearing all the complaints second-hand, now I'm the one who "can't get her shit together" simply because I make an occasional error - or don't give him exactly the kind of information he requests.
For example, we had to survey a lot for improvements. I told him, quoth, "Tie in everything, including the buildings driveways and power poles."
He heard, "Tie in only the buildings and driveways." He also apparently didn't read the sheet I gave him that said, "Tie in everything, because it's for a site plan."
Another instance is I told him that I needed him out to a site "right after lunch."
Two o'clock rolls around and I ask why he hadn't left yet.
His response, "You said after lunch. It's after lunch now."
I have tried to accommodate this guy including writing every single little thing down. No matter what I do, it's not good enough. He rolls his eyes or sighs in frustration every time I give him a job. He complains to our boss about -- well, everything. It's made me consider a new career, because I obviously suck at what I do now. He complains about not enough communication, but doesn't tell me when he's finished with a job, let alone what he's found in the field. When an engineer comes to me for the status, I'm left shrugging my shoulders. I am at a total loss on what to do, because I feel as though I can no longer do my job well. I used to have pride in my work. Now I have no abilities short of breathing.
I've seriously considered leaving, but the problem is, how do I know I won't run into a similar -- or worse -- situation at a different company?
I know it's frustration and fear driving me to run away. Unfortunately, God has never allowed me to run away from my problems and challenges, he's certainly not going to let me slide (slither) out of it this time.
I've complained to my hubby, and his advice was to let it all go. Some problems can't be solved. Since I have to work with this guy, this is not something I can ignore. It's like being stuck in the mud. I can't pretend it's not there and expect to magically get out of it.
This entire situation makes me feel my age like I've never had, like I'm being forced into a mid-life crisis. It's made seeing the brighter side of things more difficult. I dread going to work every day when I used to look forward to it. My blood pressure rises whenever I end up in the same room with New Guy, expecting to be critiqued on my knowledge and capabilities as a land surveyor.
New Guy isn't a bad person, because as I said, much of his work is top-notch (and, boy, can he bake! He made cinnamon rolls once that could rival most restaurants). The main problem, I think, is he and the company I work for are not the best fit. We're a small company, and as such, we're more informal when it comes to inter-office communications and working with clients. He would actually work better at a larger company that has more structure and separation between departments.
That's not to say some of his complaints aren't valid, but he expresses them in such a way as to put me instantly on edge. It takes me a while to actually take his words into consideration, and that's not right, either. I can't ask or expect him to change; I have to find a way to not let his attitude and personality get under my skin.
I don't know the end result of all this, except to say I can't run away from it as much as I would like. I will come out of this a better person; there's no way I can't. In looking at one optimistic outcome, if I come out of this unscathed, there is not another human being I won't be able to deal with (I know, possible famous last words here, because God might just decide to prove me wrong).
Whew. I feel better now. Writing always does. Thanks for enduring my little rant. Happy Friday!