Worried? Stressed? Filled With Anxiety? Join the Club.

Published February 7, 2014 by Malia

Mom says that when I was born, I had this worried little look on my face.  Apparently it was such a good impression of my dead great-grandmother, it earned me the instant nickname, “Little Wilma.”  (Wilma was the dead great-grandmother, and apparently was a bit of a worrywart. I felt I should probably clarify that).  I didn’t used to think I deserved the nickname.  Lately, though, I’m starting to think I do.

A few years ago, I went through the terrifying experience of being unemployed for over a year (after being employed at what I thought was a long term job for 3.5 years).  It was at the end of that year that I went back to school for a year and a half.  The time from when my last “real” job ended until I was employed at my current job was two and a half years.  It was a horrible time in my life, especially the first year when I was job hunting.  I came to believe that I was the most worthless waste of space on planet Earth.  It didn’t help that there’s was this constant thought in my head that I didn’t even deserve to have a roof over my head.  Even now, I’m very aware of the fact that I should have been homeless.

When I got hired at my current job, I was so excited.  It was my dream job.  Working in a lab.  Wearing a lab coat.  Being an integral part of the medical community, but not having to actually deal with patients (just, y’know, what comes out of their bodies).  Even now, just over a year there, I still get excited that I get to work there.  However, with the excitement comes a whole slew of other emotions.

I’m really scared and stressed out.  Every day, I’m filled with panic because I love my job so much, and I don’t want to lose it.  And the funny thing is, that’s not even something I’m looking at having happen.  Everything has been really good.  My co-workers are great.  My boss is great.  The work is fantastic.  My last job and those years of unemployment just messed me up so bad, I’m really struggling.  I have a co-worker that has told me, more than once, that I need to “lighten up,” and I wish I could tell him how badly I want to be able to.

Not only that, but I wish I could figure out how to lighten up.  I’ve basically got six years of baggage hanging over my head that I’m trying to figure out how to deal with.  I really want to be able to let down my guard and start letting my co-workers in, because right now I’m not sure I seem to terribly different from the Ice Queen, Lady Mary.

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