Anxiety/Panic and Making A Fool Out of Myself

According to this website, I probably had an anxiety attack instead of a panic attack, although my physical symptoms at that moment were more aligned with those of a panic attack.  Both have been foreign to me, even though I am familiar with anxiety somewhat.  Actually, I believe it is in my DNA to be anxious.  I refuse to allow it to become a “thing.”  Not disparaging anyone who suffers from either.  My daughter had severe anxiety all of the time, and that anxiety more than likely led to her pre-mature death of a heart attack.  If there was something to worry about, she worried about it. She took medicine and even that didn’t control it completely.

I can say, other than in some extreme situations, I didn’t suffer with prolong anxiety (meaning beyond the situation that provoked the anxiety) until I was married for a few years to my ex-husband (a.k.a limp dick cheater Fuckface).  There was always a “nervousness” when dealing with him, especially when it was time for him to be home from work.  I wasn’t always conscious of that, it is only becoming clearer now.  Now that I’m far away from him and safe. The fear of someone knocking at my door with some type of warrant, summons, etc. is slowly disappearing.  Eight times.  Imagine that.  Eight times, I was either served to appear in court (for non-divorce reasons) or visited by the police.  Eight times in a six-month period. It was as if he was trying to kill me.

I just triggered myself talking about this.  I feel the heat rising to my head. Deep breaths.  Deep breaths.

His griminess is why I will never be made to feel guilty for not informing him of or letting him know what’s happening with our child.  He is not worthy of knowing anything.  His input would be useless and counterproductive. What good could he be to our child, a man who sent the authorities to that child’s mother’s home eight times? No.

Nevertheless, I’m suffering and must find my way free from all of this because it’s affecting me.  Recently, (I can only talk about it now because I was too embarrassed the week it actually happened) I think I had a panic/anxiety attack and made a fool of myself all in the same day.  A hos.pit.al called me to take a data entry-typing test. With standard text, I type about 98 WPM.  Most positions I have been looking at only require 40-WPM.  I have never been asked to take a typing/data entry test without the job being offered to me soon afterwards (well, that was years ago).  Therefore, I knew this job would be mine, especially since they had already asked for my references, and those references told me that they had already received an email survey.  A little aside, I could not remember which job this was for.  I’ve applied for well over 50 jobs in the last few months.  Turns out it was for a part-time/PRN position (not sure what my reasoning at time was for applying for a part-time/PRN job).   All I need is my foot in the door. I am capable.  I am observant.  I catch on quickly.  I can problem solve.  I am an asset to anyone who hires me. There is no office/administrative environment that I couldn’t ease right into within a month and appear as if I have been there for years.  I know this.  I didn’t know this years ago, but I do in fact know this now.  I have never stopped volu.nteer.ing while I was a stay-at-home mother and usually the tasks I were assigned were child’s play.  Often  managers “allowed” me to work on other things (“allowed” because technically and probably legally, I probably didn’t supposed to).

I mean for God’s Sake, I am the woman who was the first woman in the blank-blank-blank who became a blank-blank-blank. Again, that was years ago, pre-marriage.

The anxiety started when the security guard didn’t keep calling HR in close enough intervals for my liking.  I arrived 15 minutes early and because HR departments are now locked down tighter than Fort Knox you have to be escorted in or some button has to be released to allow you through. He told me that she was on the phone.  As the clock ticked away, I was worried that she would believe that I arrived late.  Finally, four minutes after I was scheduled to be there, he got in touch with her and I was shown up to the right floor.

What was my fault was not asking about the tests or taking time to familiarize myself adequately.  I had been practicing with tests online and had been doing great with around 99% accuracy and 98WPM.  This position only required 90% accuracy with 40 WPM.   Turns out the tests that I’ve used to practice online were useless.  They had too many words and not enough word/number and space bar use entries.

Welcome to seeing my stupidity.  Here I go:  I got three practice panes.  Yet, I didn’t realize they were in fact practice panes.  A pane appeared and it asked for my name, address, phone number, sex, and social security number.  I entered it.  When that was done, another pane appeared and it asked for my name, address, phone number, sex, and social security number.  I entered it.  It wasn’t until the third pane that I realized that it wasn’t asking for my information; I was to fill in the panes with the information on the right of the screen.  My peripheral vision had seen something but I dismissed it as one of those windows that give you the date/weather, etc.  What a fucking idiot! No harm done though, because that was just the practice. Little did I know that would be the lead-in to my panic.  All of this is in the span of five minutes.  HR takes you in, sits you down, you warm up, you take the test, and then you leave and wait for the results.

I pressed start and began the exam.

First pane, no problem, second pane, no problem, third pane no problem……..seventh pane and suddenly it was like the dam separating my double consciousness broke and raging waters came flooding in carrying torrents of fear and destruction.  On one side of my thoughts was me taking the test, trying to concentrate, and attempting to maintain the confidence in knowing that this was just an easy task that one must do in order to proceed.  On the other side of my thoughts was how desperate I needed to pass the test to get the job.  How I desperately needed this job to assure April’s rent and utilities.  How the alimony will not make it through the red tape before May, mid-April at the earliest, how when the alimony does come through it will still not be enough, how the children needed another pair of shoes, how the car may go out any second, how my life has been a complete and utter failure……

When the dam broke, my vision became blurred.  My face reddened and I felt heated, dizzy even.  Without intending to I clicked off pane 7 before I was done and wasn’t able to back space.   In pane 8 nothing would roll off my fingers but nonsense.  I could see the gibberish on the screen, numbers going in spaces where words belonged, words going into spaces where numbers belonged and my brain couldn’t regain control.  Then pane 10 appeared, and before I could rein myself in, the test was over.

Never in the history of my life had that happened.  Even once in the military I fell asleep during a written exam because I had to work midnight to 4:00 am six nights in a row and I was still able to wake myself up, finish and pass the test. This was an unfamiliar desperation.  An ugly desperation that is embarrassing and scary.

But that is still not how I made a fool of myself.  When I got the test results back, 80% (not good enough), through email, I told the HR woman that I was very nervous during the test, and I told her why I was nervous.  Big mistake.  I knew it was a mistake.  Never in a million years would’ve I disclosed my personal business in a professional setting.  But I’m not myself, and I’m doubting what I think/do.  The day before, I got my haircut (coincidentally the hair stylist was raised by a grandmother because when she was 3, her mother died).  When we were talking about jobs and interviews, I allowed myself to rationalize her advice.  Her advice was to tell people that I need a job because I am raising my grandchildren.  I know HR people don’t give a damn about tales of woe.  I know this.  Nevertheless, as I said, I started rationalizing, and thinking, “Well, she is from around here, maybe she knows the culture/climate/sentiment better than I do.” … “Maybe people here are more compassionate and understanding and will consider cases such as mine.”  Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

I humiliated myself.

Chagrined.

Mortified.

Ashamed.

I am a big-fat fool who cannot believe that I essentially pleaded to take the test over.  Basically HR said something along the lines, “Sorry for your situation…….you are encouraged to test again in 90 days.”

If in 90 days, I still need a part-time/PRN job because I don’t have a full-time job,  I am going to top myself.

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. I have found that if a job can’t at least be sympathetic to the needs of others, then they aren’t the right fit for me. A job that doesn’t care about an individual and their struggles, aren’t going to later on care about who you are; you will just be another number in their payroll book. Keep looking. The right door will open for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. williexplode says:

      I keep moving along. I can’t afford not to. I read somewhere where an HR person was griping about people telling him their sad stories. He ended his tirade with “No one wants to hire anyone with all of that baggage.” And I couldn’t help but think, “Needing to support your family is considered baggage? WTF?” Is that how they really look at job seekers.

      Like

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