Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Stress

Work is horrible. I should be on leave before I retire but I was forced back to work. My and two others 40 years of service are to be celebrated by a luncheon later this month. I was going to refuse to attend. But then one of the others with forty years service really asked me to attend, and he said, we are getting watches! I haven't worn one for years as I am allergic to metal on my skin and who needs one now when I can touch my phone screen and see the time, or even have it permanently displayed.

Of course some people like watches on their wrists to check their email.

It has been a stressful few weeks back at work, annoyingly so but not like the stress where you kill yourself.

It all came to a head on Saturday night when over a bottle of Scotch we shared, R and I sorted the world and then complicated it. We argued, we nitpicked and we went to bed drunk after a bang on argument about which neither of us I think can recall. We normally have such good self control. I can't speak for R, but I slept too late, was way behind on my social www connections and my thinking was below par. I wasn't game to check my blood pressure.

I cast my mind back to 2017 when we were travelling on the train weekly to Heidelberg to see Hippie Niece who was pregnant with the twins. Once she gets through this pregnancy and they are born healthy, all will be well. Little did we know.

Speaking of parenthood, you don't often hear it from a dad's perspective. I would rather like Adam's wife to write about how she felt and dealt with a new baby. Nevertheless, I think this read about being a new dad is really good. Of particular note is what he says about breastfeeding.

So, back in 2017 when going to see Hippie Niece in hospital, we stopped off at Victoria Park Station and bought new LED lamps from Beacon Lighting for our over counter lights in the kitchen. They came with a three year warranty. Two weeks ago one began to flicker and then Sunday morning the other on went out.

We pulled the first light out with no problem but had some difficulty with the second. Brain fail number one, R said part of the fitting was bent and he would straighten it with pliers. It snapped. At the back of my brain I knew it was cast aluminium and cannot be bent. So we now need new light fittings as well as new LEDs.

Off by tram to Beacon Lighting in St Kilda. We bought new fittings, and received spare LED lamps as warranty replacement for the failed lamps.

We went on to Acland Street for lunch at Cafe 95, I think it is called. Acland Street is a place to lunch where you put your phone down on the table because the passing parade is far more interesting than what might be on your phone screen. We both walked away from the cafe without the new lamps. Brain fail number 2. We didn't get far before I remembered them and retrieved the bag.

We went to the supermarket to buy some bread mix for the bread maker as it was one of the rare occasions I had cooked our evening meal, pea and ham soup, and I have down to two days rather than three. It was really good, accompanied by the home made bread, albeit from a packet mix. Our bread making machine is old, but it does a good job. We eschewed margarine and slapped lovely soft and salty butter on the still warm bread. It is rare for me to eat too much, but I ate too much soup and bread and felt bloated afterwards.

Once home we realised the new light fittings came with standard plugs, not bare wires to connect them. Oh, we need our electrician. Brain fail number 3. We will have a little rest lying on our beds and it came to R. We just need to buy female plugs and connect them for the new male plugs to fit into. Out in the motor car this time to the big green hardware shed and bought said plugs. We connected them up (that sounds so easy. It wasn't for a 62 and 70 year old up on a ladder) and we are so pleased with the new lamps, that come with a 5 year warranty. They look so modern, unlike the old units, which were new a few years ago.

I was looking forward to a relaxing day. It wasn't. Nevertheless, achievement. R called Ex Sis in Law, as her husband's mother is dying at around the age of 88. It was in her home when she was a young newish wife that the Philip Morris cigarette dispensing machine was installed, along with the pay tv to view and to pay off the tv.

Meanwhile Mother called. Can R come Wednesday instead of Thursday? The muscle man is only in my town on Thursday and I have an appointment with him. R reluctantly said yes, reluctant because he does not want her to manipulate him more than she does.

I could have gone with him, but I have a doctor's appointment that day to have a week of stress leave from work.

I only feel like I am going slightly mad.

53 comments:

  1. I felt stressed just reading that post Andrew.

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    1. Don't worry Marie. I am theatrical when I write.

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  2. Can I ask a favour of you? There has been no activity on my 'Underground' blog for over 24 hours. I wonder if you could try and see if there is a problem accessing it. Thanks.

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    1. Marie, it seems to be fine to me. I haven't commented yet. I started reading Hammersmith but I was distracted by something.

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  3. Oh my. I too am stressed just reading this. I do hope that your life settles into a more even keel soon. And am v glad that you had the positive of being (finally) pleased with the new lamps. Ladders? Shudder.

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    1. EC, yes men on ladders when they are over 50. Not a great idea.

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  4. Nice busy times; at least you are coping. Stressed is what you’ll feel once you are retired and thousands of things clamour for your attention which you can safely overlook when you were working.

    Have fun!

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    1. Friko, how amazingly right you are.

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  5. I should think your work would be upset with themselves for how they dealt with your leave situation but likely they are not.

    When you see your doctor, perhaps ask if there is a chance of getting a "mental health care plan" which -at least in NSW but you'd have to check for VIC - allows you 6 free sessions with a psychologist and then they can add on an extra four if you need them. Might be very helpful in getting to retirement and also might be helpful in any further stress leave you might need.

    How much longer exactly before you can retire? :)

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    1. Snoskred, better that I get a skin care cancer plan as a chronic condition. I am fine mentally. Just p'''ed orf.

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    2. Of course you are fine mentally however this is also an opportunity you could take up and run with especially given the soon to be changes which will be happening - retirement is not an easy process and talking through all of this with someone could be a good thing worth doing.

      I have had a psychologist for some years now after my Aspergers diagnosis - I like to call her my qualified adult. I don't think I'd be sitting here anywhere near as happy and sane without her. ;)


      Pissed off is not a good place to remain for any length of time! ;)

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    3. All noted Snoskred. I admire you for you rising above whatever life throws at you. You do it all very well, and I haven't forgotten your sage advice about many things.

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  6. Anonymous10:46 am

    you should get an apple watch. I was given one by a group who chucked in, for a recent significant occasion. I love it.

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    1. Anon, I don't do Apple but what a nice thing for friends to do for you.

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  7. Acland Street is certainly a place to lunch where you put your phone down on the table because the passing parade is far more interesting than anything else.

    But I wouldn't be getting sloshed on whiskey at a time of high anxiety - it makes it worse when you wake up. I would be going outside, eating light food, playing sport and people watching.

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    1. Hels, I was with you until you mentioned playing sport. Never done it and have no intention to do it.

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    2. Broaden your definition of sport. Include billiards, poker, darts, walking between coffee shops and sitting in a sauna :)

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  8. Take it easy old boy! Ditch the job as soon as you can. And don't climb up ladders. Doctors say after 55 our balance is shot and ladders are a no no. Bill's friend fell from a ladder and became a paraplegic.

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    1. Diane, gosh, that is bad about Bill's friend. R nearly fell from the steps and he is 70. I am 62 and I am very cautious.

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  9. Work stress I think we all who has jobs can relate. At this time doing personal care I have wonderful clients. But there been time there been some real nightmares.
    Plus I do like Scotch also.
    Coffee is on

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    1. Dora, it ain't easy at times is it. A little Scotch can help us make sense of things in life. Too much just mucks things up.

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  10. Many years ago I treated myself to a Rolex. I scratched the glass front and had to send it back to Switzerland for repair. After receiving the bill, I decided to sell it, and haven't worn a watch since. The village church clock strikes the hour and half hour, so I have no problem with timekeeping.

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    1. Cro, that is so nice to not be governed by the minute but the half hour.

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  11. Gosh, you are tired of your job and don't want to be there it seems. Take it easy.
    No to ladder, husband falls off them so I've banned him for using, he has done that same, banned himself too.
    Pleased you like your new nights, new 'things' do make a difference.

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    1. PS Andrew - that link doesn't work, but I expect you know that! :)

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    2. Yes Margaret, I don't want to be there at work.

      Good thing about ladders. Older men can be so stupid. We are using just steps, but nearly as bad.

      The links work for me. I have just checked them.

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    3. The 1st link works :) the second for me doesn't even right now...it's ok though.

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    4. Mysterious, as it works for me :(

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  12. Quite a few "senior moments' there Andrew, but at least you have nice new lighting now and the work stress will soon be gone forever. Could we 'see' the new lighting please?

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    1. Thanks River. I can only show the new lights as a non direct photo. I guess I can show them if they are off.

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  13. Andrew, I was confused that you even went back to work believing that your trail period of Retirement didn't suit you. After all you did fret about your up and coming retirement.
    I don't understand the Australian work ending system.
    Did you not have the choice to simply leave your job a while ago, and not return. What or who made you go back?

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    1. Dee, I had 31 weeks of leave booked and then I would retire. At the end of the first week I was called and told I could have no more than 13 weeks consecutavly. I did and do fret a little about retirement, but I have put in my hard yards at work and I no longer want to be there.

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    2. Can you take some more leave now you've been back at work for some time? Maybe another 13 weeks? :)

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    3. Snoskred, yes. It was nine weeks back at work before holidays for a month in July.

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    4. It really is silly of them. When I retired, they calculated my accumulated leave, added on my long service leave and asked if I wanted the pay in a lump sum or weekly into my bank account. I opted for weekly and had a lovely six months off, then because I was only officially on holiday for some of that time, I accumulated another two weeks of pay which I took all at once when the six months were over and I haven't set foot in that store since then.

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    5. River, that is roughly how I wanted it to work for me.

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  14. After everything you've been through, I say sell the watch on eBay, and use the funds for a calm, soothing dinner,,or to have a chef come to your home. Never a dull day in your world Andrew! Hugs...RO

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    1. RO, lol. I never thought of that. Sell the watch. I hope they don't put my name on it. Gee, a chef to come into the home would be pretty cool.

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  15. I've not worn a watch for many, many years. I have no need for one...and I don't have a mobile phone.

    Wearing a watch when I was cooking in restaurants was out of the question. My hands were in and out of water all the time...and a watch just got in the way...in every way when preparing food before and during a busy, hectic service.

    It sounds like you need to take a few deep breaths, Andrew...ease your stress....feeling that is no good for you...as you are well aware. Take care.

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    1. Lee, yes, I see how impractical a watch would be for you. Deep breathing as I type. All good.

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  16. Yup, you are done with work! I would want to skip the celebration as well. Always remember John getting a work watch, it never worked properly. I never wear a watch nowadays.
    I need lights under my kitchen counters, we had a brain fail when we had the ceiling lighting done, should have added a few more.
    Scotch fights are dangerous!!

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    1. Jackie, so many like large flashy watches as a status thing. I don't care at all. We too looked at under cupboard lighting over benches and it would cost and intrude into the cupboards. It may be possible now with just LED running on batteries. Some Scotch fights can be. Some you just forget.

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  17. Such a shame you had to go back Andrew. The watch might come in handy at some point as a re-gift.. there must be someone in the family that wears one 😉 Drinking a whole bottle of whiskey is never going to end well, I remember once a very long time ago I did a similar thing resulting in alcohol poisoning, P tried to pass it off as food poisoning to the locum doctor when he arrived.. don't think he bought it 😀

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    1. Grace, lol about a whole bottle of Scotch. Food poisoning, haha. It is only half a bottle each and it used to be no problem, but as you get older, it takes a harder toll.

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  18. I think I might have taken the watch just to get something free from work.

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    1. Kirk, I will see. I amy attend and receive the watch.

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  19. My husband put a new roof on our house over the course of two summers just a couple of years back (he would have been 62/63) and I think I held my breath the entire time. No ladders for me. Heck, I can't even use the stairs without slipping - twice now, once resulting in six weeks of pain when sitting . . . be careful, you two!

    I admire you replacing your lights yourselves. You're very handy.

    I hope your last weeks at work go quickly. Sadly, time has a way of stretching out forever when we're not having a good time.

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    1. Jenny, I too would have been holding my breath. I think in your early sixties, you no longer bounce when you hit the ground. Yes, the time back at work is dragging.

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  20. Oh no, your life sounds too busy for enjoyment sometimes. Too much stress.

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    1. Strayer, it can be busy at times, but we do have quite a bit of chill time too.

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  21. This is why I escaped to Florida. I was simply up to here with everything, and my stress levels were exceptionally high!
    After the rest, and coming back home, I am attempting to stay destressed. Ha! But I try.
    I hope you got your leave.

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    1. Maribeth, you are recharged but it seems nothing has changed at home. I now what it is like.

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