Yes, I realize that may sound ridiculous. But let me give you some background.
I once talked about the cream of broccoli soup in the café in my building. They have delicious coffee, sandwiches and smoothies. I found myself purchasing tea quite frequently because the cup was so large.
The quest began! Find a beautiful mug that was a larger size, bring my own tea and save money, and maybe even choose a nice beach-y scene to help me trudge through winter. When I found the mug with the palm trees, it was love at first sight.
I have this thing for palm trees. This picture is from my wedding, which took place on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. The venue imports palm trees for the summer, and I can’t tell you how many people asked me on which island we were married.
So me, palm trees, a cool breeze and sand between my toes … that is the happy place where I go on the days when the temperature is not my friend. One of these days I’ll tell you more about how the cold affects someone with fibromyalgia, but that’s another post.
I’ve learned to accept the new people even though they have come with much baggage. The baggage was understandable at first, because who hasn’t experienced a rough time in their life? And when the voices got louder, the phones were slammed harder and the words feeding into my head became more toxic, I still tried to keep the peace.
But when I went to make tea and my mug was gone, I was puzzled. There were several mugs in the sink, where they had been for days. (I may want to keep peace, but I’m not doing their dishes.) I asked via text if anyone had seen it, since no one from their office was actually in the office. No one knew.
It was my boss who stumbled upon it, and it was not in the kitchen sink. It was sitting in the doctor’s sink, filled with filthy water and a pair of medical scissors, and blotched with some crusty material that I really don’t want to think about. I had been out of the office two days and my mug was left unprotected. (*gasp*)
Lord forbid I ask, but I did anyway. I was told that no one knew it was mine even though I had actually made a show of the mug when I brought it in. It’s hard to forget when someone is giddy over a tea-cup.
This happened on the same day where I came in to my phone being unplugged. I responded that I was respectful of their “stuff” and expected the same in return. I definitely threw in the fact that it was ludicrous to use that mug for medical equipment, but I was not snarky. (I love that word!)
What happens next is what one might expect had I launched an attack on this girl. I was told “I don’t have time for your ^%#$ right now” and if I brought something in to the office, it was silly for me to not expect others to use it.
What? I’ve worked in many jobs and there was always the unwritten rule of being respectful of other people’s things, especially something they use to eat or drink with.
Then she called me the “b” word. She said I was fake, a hypocrite, that I sat at my desk like a goody-two-shoes and pretended to be nice to her. I always had something to complain about and I was a child for going behind her back to speak to my boss about her.
I talked to my boss because I was tired of hearing the f-bomb dropped in front of my patients. I spoke with her about it, it didn’t change, and I went to my boss. You will never get an apology from me for that one.
But you know the worst part? I used to be that person; the one who was dramatic at work, who spoke too loudly on the phone, who slammed things when things went awry. I’m not that person now, but I’m sharing an office with someone who is. And as much as I want to beat myself up over the sins of my past, I’ve learned to let it go.
I just don’t want to work with someone who dominates the entire office with negativity. I may have been obnoxious, but this situation is quite alarming. I’ve been told to disengage, that you can’t ever win with someone with this type of personality. (I will refrain from my diagnosis, I am not a doctor, but have experience with dealing with similar behavior.) There are so many stories but this has become far too long. (*yawn*)
Tomorrow is a new day. I will say “Good morning” in a civil manner because I am a professional who values her job. Fighting with someone like this just brings us to equal levels, and I don’t want to be dragged into the abyss. Not again.
I have too much to be thankful for. So I’ll wash my palm tree mug and I’ll think of try not to get so upset over “things,” and learn how to maintain the integrity that is worth so much more.