And how! I desperately needed a holiday to recover from the last holiday I just had, but all good things must come to an end (and mercifully, interactions with my relatives likewise). Except my workload, which never comes to an end, and logically must therefore be nothing good.
As is par for the course, nobody had had the time to help me out with any of it (which is fair enough, because everybody is still covering the backlog at the rival hospital instead). As is also par for the course whenever I go on holiday, my job description had been radically shifted in the interim – although at least this time, my boss had thought to mention it to me before I left.
So I am no longer working for both Dr Anonymous and Dr Hurricane, but for Dr Hurricane alone! …across both hospitals, so a reduction in workload it is not. On the other hand, having fewer masters to answer to might be a definite improvement.
I have mixed feelings about giving up Dr Anonymous to focus on Dr Hurricane (plus, the nurse and the physiotherapist, of course! but it is one fewer master.)
On the one hand, Dr Hurricane will blow in like the Big Bad Wolf, in a swirl of papers and fleeing nurses, slam down about three weeks’ worth of work with the words, ‘Get it done before you leave and get it RIGHT this time!’ and disappear with a flash and a bang before you can ask her to clarify a small but extremely significant detail on which it all hangs.
On the other hand, Dr Anonymous will patiently front-load his clinics to bursting-point, despite being warned over and over again about the numbers, and then turn up to see forty patients in the waiting room, become overwhelmed with despair and go home again.
On the first hand again, Dr Hurricane manufactures about three times the amount of labour by changing everything just as soon as all your ducks are in a line; but on the second hand, Dr Anonymous manufactures about three times the amount of work by being paralysed with fear in the face of modern technology – and with this new system being brought in, there is about to be an awful lot more of that. (And I am told the new system will not allow me to deal with it all for him).
However, what it mostly comes down to is that Dr Hurricane makes many of the other secretaries cry if they have to deal with her on a regular basis, (an effect I had always assumed she was unaware of, since she’s vanished in a puff of smoke before anyone has time to start – but which she has since told me she finds quite pleasing), so in order to stop my ex-Cellmate being brought back to work for her again, I nobly took one for the team. (I do hope my ex-Cellmate appreciates this – I realise now she didn’t enjoy sharing our ‘single occupant’ office quite as much as I did, or possibly, at all, but hey, in memory of the friendship I thought we had, and all that…)
Besides, when it comes to the crunch, I’d rather work for the one who is notoriously shouty because nobody can live up to her standards of perfection than the one who is notoriously shouty because he is bewildered by it all. It’s worse having a dressing down in front of several colleagues and/or passing strangers when you kinda feel sorry for the person giving the dressing down; it makes my brain fuse. So I guess, if I’m going to get the bollocking of a lifetime on a regular basis (an oxymoron, admittedly), I’d rather get it from someone who is better than me.
Plus, I do hope this pays off when the new software is installed and Dr Anonymous has a complete meltdown.
Of course, word has it everyone is going to have a complete meltdown, because it is a massive change, and some people have been working the same way in the same job for my entire adult life. But surgeons really hate change, and Dr Hurricane might actually be the best-placed of them all to weather this. I’m still as surprised as anyone that I’ve actually chosen to nail her colours to my mast, but we seem to be getting along rather better these days, ever since she found out I take blacksmithing courses and advised me that I should make gigantic dinosaurs out of scrap metal.
So not a lot happened this week except for me doing piles of overtime (having cunningly saved up all those hours I owed for getting the boiler fixed, go me), changing my name, and a sudden onslaught of health problems both chronic and acute. However, these turned out, after I overshared to one of my two remaining colleagues, to be simple iron deficiency, so I bought some iron pills and 24 hours later, they were totally gone!
(Maybe I should eat more green vegetables – but that would involve more cooking; and whenever I’m sharing my living space, I tend to become so completely avoidant, due to numerous outpourings of rage from previous lodgers who were incensed that I might be so thoughtless as to be already cooking when they decided to cook, that I… don’t. Which I admit is unutterably pathetic, but there you go. There is enough shouting at work, and I don’t need to come home from it to a ding-dong row for having the cheek to live in my own home.
I have a Plan for this, however.)
Ah yes, the ‘changing my name’ part. Not ‘beshemoth’, obviously; my actual, real, honest-to-god birth name. I have been hankering after changing this for a while, but after the meltdown with my nearest and dearest last week, I have finally decided to bite the bullet. I have mended a lot of bridges with my mother, mainly by Never Mentioning The Past Ever, for it would hurt her badly while resolving precisely nothing; and I am now resigned to the fact that despite all my efforts, no bridges will ever be mended with my father (or, not while I remain biologically female, at any rate). Nevertheless, I feel an increasing need to draw a line in the sand; on that side, we have the utter shambles that was my childhood, and on this side, the person I made. Besides, both my driving licence and passport are up for renewal soon – this is as cheap a change as it’s gonna get!
I would also like to achieve this with minimum fuss and vitriol, so I have formed the cunning excuse (or ‘Lie’, if you will, although it is true enough) that I just can’t sell artwork under my birth-name with a straight face, because I hate the sound of it so goddamn much. And I still find it difficult enough to tell the world I have something worth buying without that niggling me too. But I will blame that on the kids who used to throw rocks at me while shouting that name in Neanderthal accents.
Hopefully, my parents will buy it.
And then, someone will buy the art!