If you're not knitting, the terrorists win

(My mostly on-topic ramblings about knitting. And life in general. My life in specific.)

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Location: Indiana, United States

I'm a middle aged mother of 2 grown children and wife to a man who doesn't seem to mind my almost heroin-like yarn addiction. I spend my time writing, knitting, and generally stressing out.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Wake Up, Party People!

Leave me alone, depression!
I bet you thought I was gone. I kind of thought I was gone. I swear, I spent so much time so depressed these last few years, I feel like I've just emerged from underwater. I would like to say I've been fighting this depression and have finally won, but the truth of the matter is, I just feel better.

Like suddenly.

I just suddenly don't feel that crushing weight of dark emotion that I did before.

So that's good.

Actually, I think there are a couple of things that helped me out. For one thing, I started writing again last year. Well, okay, maybe it was 2016. But I hadn't written in so long because I just didn't have the time, didn't have the feeling, didn't have whatever I needed to write, I guess. I think sometimes it was work sucking the life out of me and sometimes I just gave in to the feeling because it was easier.

Just like it's easier to say "I'm good. Thanks." when people ask how you are. Because, trust me, no one really wants to know how you are. That's just something they say. If they really want to know how you are, they'll say, "You seem down. Everything okay?" (And when you say "I'm just tired." they'll call you on that bullshit, too.) But the people who say, "Hi. How are you?" are perfectly happy with "I'm good. Thanks."

But writing helps. It's funny that I kind of forgot how much I enjoyed it. It's also kind of funny how much I'm out of practice now. Ha! Like, all the stuff I used to be able to do in my head, I now have to map out so I can visualize it.

I don't know. Maybe that's age. I am getting older.

The other thing that helped me last year was that, at some point, I decided to start projecting outward instead of internalizing. So, I worked on a number of charity projects at the beginning of the year. And I decided to do an appreciation project for police and fire departments. I made 45 hats as an appreciation gift for M's department, enough for everyone. And I put each of them into a bag with candy. I also made cupcakes and fudge for the PD and FD here in my neighborhood.

I'll post photos of all the hats on another post, but here's a couple pics of the gift bags.

One other thing I focused on was the environment at work. It's hard and stressful and tiring to work in retail. That's why there's so much turnover. It's not hard like rocket scientist hard. Or stressful like surgeon stressful. And it's not tiring like ditch digging tiring. But it is hard and stressful and tiring.

Mainly, it's because of a small percentage of customers who are mean because they think they're better than the people working in retail. Or the ones who are just trying to steal or scam something. Or the ones who are just fucking mean. (If you've worked retail, you know there are customers like that. Just the other day, a couple were in and the man was so hateful and angry. He talked mean to me, to the cashier, and to his wife. He ridiculed her choices and called her names and was condescending to the cashier and downright rude to me when I tried to help them find something.)

Those few customers are the ones that make the day suck for people who work in retail. Especially during the holidays, when everyone is working very hard to help customers. Here's a little truth those customers don't want to hear: If I have every register running and three employees also prescanning items, and the line is still long... there's just a lot of people shopping.  We're doing the best we can.

There's no need to call the store from the line and demand to speak to the manager. (That actually happened. I had to close the register I was running so my cashier could get a lunch so I could walk over to answer the phone to apologize to this lady whose problem was there were so many people in the store. And the cashier closed her line to go answer the phone. "Ma'am, that was me. I had to close my line to come and answer this phone call."  And guess what? That lady got a survey on the receipt and gave us a bad score because the cashier closed the line to answer the phone! Again... I closed the line to answer her phone call demanding a manager.)

There's no need to tear down every sign you can find, bring them to the register, slap them down on the counter angrily and say "These are buy one get one free!" Because, "Yes, ma'am. That's how they're ringing up." And now I have to go put these signs back up.

There's no need to treat my cashiers like they're stupid. "Those are supposed to be 50% off." Because "Yes, ma'am. That's how they're ringing up." "I don't think that's right." "Well, they're marked $19.99 and they're ringing up $9.99." "Oh. Okay. I always just have to watch."  Yes, I guess you should watch me because I might cheat you.

You get the idea. So imagine this is your day.  It gets kind of wearing. So, I started trying to do some fun things for people at work. I created a bunch of contests and games. And I tell a joke every morning. A really, really bad joke. But I laugh.

Anyway, I really think that focusing my energies outward in those three ways was the best thing I could have done for myself. And that's my plan, going forward. Stay tuned.


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