Friday, October 10, 2008

Day Jobs, the Having Of

It feels...weird to be posting without a sketch. How will I function without artsy goodness to hide behind? Oh, wait, I have a meme. Day saved. Thanks, Etsy Bloggers!

Regular readers of this blog (all four of you) may have noticed a seeming discrepancy in my daily narrative. How can I be seriously disabled and still talk about my day job? That, I can answer in one word:

Nepotism!

Ok, it's not exactly nepotism; I got my job on the strength of my training, on my qualifications, on the basis of total inability to work more than 10 hours a week outside the home!

I did find out about it from my mom, though.

And she has since been promoted to be my direct supervisor.

Ahem.

My actual supposed job is testing center assistant. Basically, I proctor at the local community college. When I found out about the job, the office was *almost* fully staffed. They needed another person oh, about 10 hours a week. Weird hours, but not impossible ones.

Turns out it is near impossible to find a person with at least an associates' degree, willing to work 10 hours a week with no real hope of more, with no conflicting schedule requirements, who isn't a student.

Unless you're willing to work blue.

Blue badge, I mean- the color of "handicap" in the US. You'll see it at all the parking spaces up near the front, where, believe me, you want us spazzy crippled types to go.

Employers, even of hourlies, often don't consider people with noticeable disabilities. Let me tell you, employers, especially of hourlies, you are missing a gold mine. We're desperate like few legal citizens are: desperate to prove what we can do, desperate to have even a little income, desperate to feel part of the community, desperate to GET OUT OF THE HOUSE BEFORE I SNAP AND PAINT THE WALLS WITH MUSTARD.

Seriously, it had been two years. I was going all Charlotte Perkins Gilmore. I needed that job. Not the money, though I won't lie, the money is nice to have-- I needed a JOB. And my boss needed someone to work 10 hours a week without being bitter.

Bitter? The job is pretty much Stuff I Love. I have a high-speed internet connected computer, get to see a few dozen people in the day,most of whom I chat with, and spend the rest of the time yakking with my mother or my coworkers. It's pretty darn awesome.

Of course there are some rough times, especially at the end of the semester. We get very busy then, and being very busy is hard on my fizzing brain. And easy job or no, my brain is a pile of electrified pudding, and holding it together enough to be in public wears me out. I miss work sometimes, and I miss work sincerely when that happens. No one could be happier to have a clerical job.

I'm the sort of artist who needs a day job; the forced artistic down time and change of scenery makes creating easier later, and encourages me to structure my time. And I'm the sort of worker who needs a lot of time at home, lest I be taken to the ER. So here's to making a living, and the things we need to live; may they overlap as often as possible!

10 comments:

Rose Works Jewelry said...

That's cool that you have something you can do :) Now lets hope I get to find some sort of job that I can do around my severe asthma!

Mannie Vincent said...

I know what you mean about getting stir crazy, lol! Glad you've got something now!

T.Allen-Mercado said...

Good for you! I wish I...well it isn't really a wish. See, part of the problem with me is I have periods where I can and have tried to conquer the world only to fall into periods where I can't conquer the task of pulling back the comforter. They haven't come up with a colored parking spot for me yet! And, my nerves keep me from getting a license so...yeah that's my story. I like yours better. :)

Nice piece, and thanks for stopping by.

Tulip's Talking said...

Wow Sarah, thank you for sharing.

BTW, I think maybe relish would look better!

~Lily

P.S. I am a "blue" park-er.

agoodwitchtoo said...

Painting the walls with mustard? LOL!!!

I enjoyed your post, Cara!

TiLT said...

It was strange to be sketchless, but I'm glad - nice to hear you have something you like to do. My out time is with you guys :)
And the mustard look - not so hot - glad you got saved ... well, your walls anyway

Carapace said...

Wow, thanks for stopping by, everyone! From the top:

Rose, I'm sure you can find something to do! I found it was harder finding a job I could accept (was it loud? Bright? Was there hidden lifting?) than finding an employer who would accept me. Of course I am fabulous, and so are you! When you find your job, I'll be saying "I told you so!"

Mannie- I don't know what the stir might have done to my health, but it was a good thing for my husband when I got out.;)

t.allen- I do sympathize. When I'm flat, I'm utterly flat, and so when I'm up I'm trying to make up for all the time I don't have. It confuses people who expect diability to be a constant state, but most folks behind the badge are like me and Rose-and you! And darn it, we will conquer the world one day!;)
Thanks for coming by-- I really love your writing! Everyone, check out T's blog!
Lily- Oh, it's a good thing I didn't think of the relish! Green..shiny...the walls would not have survived.
I love my blue badge.:)
Witchy-Ever read The Yellow Wallpaper? I did, in the middle of my stir crazy. Ahem. It's like reading The Stand in the middle of flu season. A bit too relevant...
Nice to see you again!
Tilt: Oh heavens yes, the internet is my lifeline on the world. I grew up with it; the days the net goes down are among the darkest in my stuttering memory. Glad to have you here in the invisible world!

storybeader said...

cara - you seem to have a good attitude about the whole situation. Glad that you're getting out of the house, and being around other people. I think that's why I always wanted to work - to be able to interact with others!

Jen said...

OMG "Going all CHarlotte Perkins Gilmore" .... seriously LMAO! As a former English and Women's Studies major I give big kudos to anybody who makes such literary references. Thanks!!!

Carapace said...

Storybeader- Socializing is the real only reason to work, I swear. Money's just an excuse introverts give to leave the house for a while.;) If all I wanted was money, I don't know, I could sell organs on ebay or something.

Jen- That story is going to haunt me til I die. How could I not love it? I have to read some more Gilmore-- maybe Herland...
Feel free to litgeek here any time! You may have guessed I have a fondness for the English language:).

Thanks for stopping by!