If My Next Boss Was In My Room At 2:17 a.m.


2:17 a.m. That’s what the clock displayed when I looked over at it this morning. My head was throbbing from a headache that must have arrived with a change in the atmospheric pressure sometime between 10:20 p.m. the night before and the 4 hour interval.

I was also aware that it was incredibly hot in bed, and so I got up to open a window and let in some cool air. Then for some inexplicable reason, I also felt like – and there’s no nice way to say this – throw up. So I tried unsuccessfully. Back in bed after taking some headache medication, it was a fitful 45 minutes and I was up again trying to once again throw up. Again, unsuccessful.

And what was going through my mind at 3:00 a.m.? Well conflicting emotions honestly. Today is my birthday and I’m happy about that; I’m always happy about my birthday. On the downside, there could be the possibility of the union I’m part of calling a strike today which would start on Monday. And for a couple of moments I wondered what it might look like calling in sick on the day of one’s birthday when a strike might be called too. Especially when I’ve had an Exceptional Attendance award year after year and can’t even remember the last year I took time off for illness.

And just to show I need a life outside of the work I love so much, within a couple of minutes of these thoughts, I imagined some future boss or interviewer sitting quietly in the room being able to see all the thoughts running through my brain. “Will he take a day off or fight it and show up for work?”

It was a fitful, restless 3 hours until finally at 6:00 a.m. I got up. The headache was gone, and looking briefly outside I could see the rain had come, the pressure had broken and the stomach was settled. What was with that anyhow?

After a shower, (showers always help me – it’s like any negativity gets washed down the drain with the water) I was shaving when I heard for the first time that Mitchell family tradition playing on the stereo. “Birthday” by the Beatles was playing loud and clear and surprise, surprise, my wife was up early making pancakes just for me. Ah to be loved.

But I wonder about that silent future boss or interviewer sitting in my bedroom who I had somehow conjured up in the wee hours of the morn. If I was ever in an interview and the interviewer asked me to share an example of my dependability, would this be an example? “Sure thing”, I’d start off, “Remember that June 13th morning back in 2014? You know, you were there. I spend most of the night awake, headache, felt ill, concerned about a strike at work, how it might look if I stayed home and would I really be believed or not, but then I got my act together and there really was no question about my going in to work. Remember?”

I don’t know if I could ever really pull off that answer. I mean, sitting with an interviewer I’m meeting for the first time, they might just think it extraordinarily creepy that I lay prone in bed thinking of future interviewers sitting watching me as I sleep. More than likely the next thing out of their mouth would be, “Well thanks for coming in Kelly. We’ll be in touch.”

So how do I feel now sitting here at 7:50 a.m.? Great. Really good. It was a nice drive into work and I brought along a favourite CD I mine to listen to on the way forgoing much of the news that normally accompanies me on my drive. And when I first got to work, I noticed right off the ‘Happy Birthday’ banner over my door, the balloons on my desk and appreciate the efforts of our committee who does these little things.

And then there was a surprise email from someone who remembered my birthday that I’ve known for several years but didn’t expect to even remember. What a nice surprise that was! Thanks Rochelle.

Of course, over than a blog about me and my start to the day on my birthday, I’ve woven a learning opportunity in here for anyone who is currently employed or seeking to be. It’s a good idea to make the effort to pull yourself together and be dependable. Often, like today, you’ll find that getting up, relieving yourself, showering and having a bite is enough to get you going and you’re well on your way. Sure sometimes you’re too ill to go in, I know that too.

Thing is…from an employer’s point of view, there’s work that needs doing and you’re relied on to get in and do it. The more reliable you are, the more people can attest to your dependability. And right here is where it just kicked me between the eyes. I don’t need to tell some future interviewer I imagined her or him sitting at my beside some fitful night in the past – no! I can just provide the name and phone number of my immediate boss of the present, who can and will state how reliable I am.

You see that’s the thing, you’re present job is in some ways, a very long testimony about how you may be right or wrong for a future job!

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