Is This How Indentured Servitude Feels?

I am exhausted.

My body aches from the stress and the long hours. My mind hurts from the non-stop adrenaline needed to stay on top of my work.

But there will be no rest for me these three days off. We are seriously short of staff and I have to work overtime just to try to keep a handle on my cases.

Cute! I need cute, and lots of it! Here's a cute June Buggie.
Cute! I need cute, and lots of it! Here’s a cute June Buggie.

I feel like such a failure.

I know that’s not rational. After all, I am doing the best that I can. But what if I miss something? How can I juggle each of these families, many in crisis, all with unique needs, and get their cases wrapped up while more and more new cases get assigned to me?

And I do all of this with no relief in sight. The soonest our unit will get an additional, fully trained investigator is September. Until investigators are fully trained, they can provide support, but they are limited in the kinds of tasks they can do.

Our bigwigs show us how grateful they are for killing ourselves by scheduling a cookout, then cancelling it because it rained. It was not rescheduled. Then they scheduled for us a getaway at a resort an hour away, but it’s for the second half of the day on day one and the first half of the day on day two. And we will still be assigned cases on those days. So it’s really not a getaway so much as a punishment.

At least someone gets plenty of rest around here!
At least someone gets plenty of rest around here!

For my sanity, I’m scrolling through the daily Indeed job recommendations and applying for anything I feel I’m remotely qualified to do. It’s not much of a job search, but it gives me hope that my life won’t be this way forever. I feel like I’m one of the children of Israel awaiting  the day God leads my people out of Egyptian bondage.

Until that day of sweet release, I will continue to exercise to keep up my physical and mental health. I’ll continue  to walk my dog, because that is the equivalent of meditation for me. I will pet a cat when I lie down at night and when I awaken in the morning.

And I will pray that someone calls me to interview for a job.

28 thoughts on “Is This How Indentured Servitude Feels?

  1. I am sorry you are so inundated with pressure from all sides. Physical-emotional, and no end in sight. I hope someone calls you for an interview, and I am glad you have your wonderful 4 legged friends to help you through. Failure is a word that should not even be on your radar, you are champion doing more than your share and carrying a heavy load. Winner in my eyes

  2. Oh Jen…..I’m very sorry that you’ve been under stress so much…..Yes, your life and your health are much more important, so I hope you get the other job that is less stress and gives you more time to spend for your family and yourself.
    Please take very good care of you, Jen…we love you. from Angel Kevin, mom, Shiro, Chibi, Tora and Hime. xoxo

    1. It’s all good. Because eventually I’ll mess up and they’ll fire me, maybe even slam me in the media. They’ll never mention the impossible expectations put upon me, only that something happened to a child. Then I will have plenty of time to rest.

  3. Dear Jen – Perhaps it would help if you redefined what success is for you. People have different ideas of what it is but you need your own definition to work from. Once you have it clearly, I think you will find that, since failure is the opposite of success, you are not the failure you assumed, not at all!

    However, having said that, it think it is urgent for you to find some peace, even if it means taking time off from work without pay. If necessary, go to your doctor and explain the situation and request a slip prescribing time off due to your condition of exhaustion. Nothing is worth what you are going through. Having been there a few times myself, I can say this with some assurance. Without anything to change it, you will eventually end up in depression, and that is really hard to get out of.

    I so hope things will right themselves for you.


    Sandra Bell Kirchman
    Ling Ling’s Mommy

  4. Nothing’s more fun than a boss that holds “parties” for a treat for everyone…at her house ( 1 hr drive each way for some), with wine ( did I mention the driving?) in the middle of your day off/Sat., each person has to bring a dish, and of course it’s “voluntary” and so much fun sitting around with all the people you see everyday. Great way to completely overload the stress for all (but her, the “cruise director” who does little but sign her name to the paperwork/reports staff does.
    You know you are not a failure – even superwoman/superman would weep if they tried to do what you do.
    Yes, paws crossed and totally focusing energy for a new opportunity to arrive for you!
    (meanwhile, sparkle, Rumpy, sparkle to encourage Jen. Cat purrs are soothing sleep aids.)

  5. I hate to learn about your situation, Jen. I think most family service outfits are overworked and understaffed. People complain about child abuse and other family-related crises, but often won’t approve a tax increase to hire more staff and provide other services. If you’re doing the best you can, then you haven’t failed.

  6. From what I’ve read of your latest posts Rumpy…your on your way to the job your here to do. All of the pieces of it are right in front of you just waiting for you to assemble the puzzle. Doing what is good and just is seldom easy but some people are the only ones strong enough to do such things. Something tells me you are such a person and the way for you to do it will come from an obvious and delightfully surprising source! Hugs! The way I got out of the “hell I was in for 16 years was one word – surrender. Once I accepted I couldn’t control everything, fix everything by myself the door opened, violently in my case because I went on too long. I have hope for you!

      1. Nah…I don’t think so. Get beyond the fear of what you think with your head so you can do with your heart! It takes time – cripes I’m 47 and STILL having to practice this each day. Bad renters are hard to evict! Hugs.

  7. After being a foster parent for 18 years I know a lot about how things go in your kind of work. I know there are not enough people to do the job, the pay stinks, the work is time consuming and they give each person way more than it is possible for them to do. So with you sweet Jen I will be praying you get a call, interview and a job and one that is not so demanding and that you like. Big hugs

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