I Did Something Crazy: I Went On a Job Interview

I Did Something Crazy: I Went On a Job Interview

I Did Something Crazy -by TheSunnyShadow.com >> Click to Read >>I did something crazy this week. I went on a job interview.

Some may ask why something as simple as a job interview would be considered crazy. And that’s a fair question. A question that, 13 years ago, I never thought I’d have to answer. But this week I did, again.

To get fully acquainted with my situation, you may want to read Bipolar Disorder, Disability, & Stigma. 

I didn’t expect to try for a “real” job again so soon after my last failed attempt, but I found myself in a financial situation that warranted the consideration. I thought, “Why not give it one more try? An interview won’t hurt anything.” But there was one thing I failed to consider, my esteem.

As soon as the interview changed from theory to reality, anxieties rose. Not only mine, but my husband’s and my mother’s as well. The thing is, neither of them spoke up. This is odd for my mother, who’s rarely shy about sharing her opinions. But my husband tends to patiently allow me to go through all the motions myself. I’m sure that he hopes I’ll eventually reach a conclusion he’s comfortable with, but if I don’t he lovingly finds a way to adapt and support me. Why? Because he wants happiness for me. I appreciate him dearly. But sometimes, like this time, I wish he would just tell me the way things are as to save me from myself.

Through the motions I began, with the interview less than 24 hours away! As always, I researched the company, researched and formulated responses to common interview questions, freshened-up and printed-off my resume, and laid-out “business professional” attire! And as usual, I neglected all the cons and glorified potential pros.

What If

Then I crunched numbers. My asking salary would be equal to → What rate of pay would compensate for the risks of losing my disability, my sanity, and ultimately my family?

I assigned the “what ifs” a monetary value as I neatly stored them away in a dark corner of my mind. What if working turns out to be too much for me but I’ve already lost my disability? What if working exacerbates my bipolar disorder? What if working exacerbates my alcoholism? What if I miss the red flags and my illnesses become destructive, again? What if working ultimately leads to me losing my family, again?

But the only “what if” I truly focused on was, what if this turns out to be an opportunity of a lifetime… the perfect job that I love, that doesn’t exacerbate my illnesses and pays a lot of money.

I Did Something Crazy -by TheSunnyShadow.com >> Click to Read >>

I killed the interview. I always prepare and fake it until I make it, a skill I first learned in A.A. The interview was not my concern.

Reality

But once I got home, the realities of what working really meant began to settle in. I realized that my thinking had been delusional. There was no possible way I could work, take care of my two daughters, my mother, and myself! Especially considering that there are times when I fail to take care of myself at all!

When I initially started my job search, I could sense my husband’s concerns. To ease his anxiety I told him, “I’m more educated and aware now, so I’ll notice red flags sooner. I won’t allow things to get out of control.” HA! It must have been so difficult for him to bite his tongue as he watched me ignoring the huge red flags bouncing off my forehead.

Even though me working would have greatly impacted our entire family, my husband completely left the decision up to me. When I finally decided that working wasn’t a reality, I had mixed feelings. Initially I felt like a failure. I admit it, there was a minute when I even felt sorry for myself and cried. I thought, “damn you bipolar!” I see other people who live with bipolar and work and do all kinds of things. But that only lasted for a minute.

The Lesson

Soon I felt relieved. And though part of me feels that I’ve wasted everyone’s time and energy with this whole job thing, I know that there’s a lesson to be learned from every situation. I realized that I was building it up to be something it wasn’t. I remembered that I don’t want to be like anyone else. I remembered that success is what we make it out to be, and that I’m already successful. Just look at my loving family and YOU, the supportive readers of this blog.

It’s up to us to create our own versions of success. Mine looks different from the way I once thought it would – and that’s okay. If I would have followed the path I’d originally laid out for myself, my life would lack meaning. And I wouldn’t be fulfilled in the way I am now. Money is not everything.

If my old therapist was here she may be disappointed. We worked so hard on me recognizing my red flags. So I’d say that I need to work on increasing self-awareness and acceptance. It makes sense that I’m not as in-tune with myself right now. I’ve gotten away from my Morning Routine and I’ve been under a lot of stress. And stressful times are when we need grounding and centering activities the most. Some more grounding/centering activities that increase self-awareness are deep breathing, journaling, meditation, mindfulness, and yoga.

Have you done anything “crazy” lately? What lesson did it teach you?

Krista-Lee-Pfeiffer

8 comments on “I Did Something Crazy: I Went On a Job Interview
  1. I so get this Krista and I think you are so marvellous for knowing these things, and yet you took a leap back into scary territory. That’s called being brave yet cautious. I think that since you are on disability don’t jeopardize it. I would kill to be on disability but I don’t think my shrink is smart enough to realize that that is the best thing for me. I’ll go back to work after this sick leave, when I absolutely have to, and hopefully withstand the stresses, but part of me suspects it’s the worst thing for me. Unfortunately I can’t afford to just quit my job. I really would need disability. Don’t beat yourself up. You’ve made peace with having to be on disability leave. Embrace that aspect of yourself. Excellent read and you had me at the title of this blog post!

    • Thanks Sandra (i.e. my biggest fan). Have you ever considered just telling your pdoc that you don’t think you can handle working and that you believe you need to be on disability? I’d just hate for you to keep pushing yourself to the point of having a complete breakdown… and unnecessarily! Just a thought. I’m glad you’re feeling better, I’d just like for you to keep it that way <3

  2. Iva K says:

    Don’t be so hard on yourself Krista. All I see is your bravery to go the lengths and try anyway. It may not be always right for us but often we won’t know until we try. And you tried, no regrets there ;). I hope you stay strong through the hard times and your situation gets better soon. Take care.

    • Thanks Iva. It’s all about perspective, isn’t it? Thanks so much for taking the time to share yours with me. You’re helping me reframe the situation in a way I wasn’t able to do on my own. I really appreciate it. Hope you are well. -Krista

  3. Andrea says:

    So this is the first time I’ve your blog, very interesting! And your an inspiration to me, for I have been struggling more than I let on. Time to focus! Thankyou!

  4. Ezi says:

    Hey don’t feel bad for wanting to pursue a job. Think of it as good thing. You thought about taking care of the family that has been taking care and loving you. It’s not completely bad, it’s completely human. I myself find myself it hard to manage my mental illnesses, my humanity, working 2 jobs, and going to school at the sametime. However, I do it because I believe in the success that awaits me if I don’t let my illnesses stop me. And you’re right! We are responsible of creating our own success, albeit small it is. So don’t feel bad for pursuing a “real” job or managing your blog, because it seems to me at the end of it all at the bottom of your heart, you just want to shine no matter which path of success you choose!

    • What a beautiful comment. And wow, tell the truth, are you secretly Super Woman? How in the world are you able to do all that stuff? And more importantly, how are you able to do it all and stay sane? I’m worn out from just reading it! Lol.

      Your determination inspires me. Thank you for the motivation and for all your support along the way. We’re stronger together and I truly do appreciate you. It’s people like you who make the bad days manageable. There’s no doubt in my mind that you will be successful. Take care. -Krista

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