All of me

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Foot IN Mouth Disease

on June 1, 2013

You know what I’m talking about. That terrible disease that sneaks up on you and causes you to say things that are hurtful, insensitive and inappropriate without thinking twice – and more often than not, without even realizing/knowing it!

FIMD crept up on me this week. I’ve been known to have relapses and remissions of this affliction throughout my life. I seem to be in a relapse as a result of the introduction of new environments these past few days.

I started back to work on Tuesday, and though I’ve been employed for five years, being away for a year causes some lapses in memory when it comes to a lot of things work-related. Especially work-content related. So to help me along, I have a return to work plan and a very knowledgeable, wonderful and extremely helpful mentor. That I’ve never met before, because she started the exact time I left.

Generally, if I were learning new skills, how long a person has been there would be no problem. They know more, I’m there to learn and that’s that. But this is different. I have four years of experience, four years of situations that happen within the work environment, and four years of mastering a lot of these skills. I’m not new.

So FIMD flared up and I said some totally inappropriate comments about how long I had been there…in front of this wonderful person. I didn’t even realize how she had taken it (as I was completely about it), until it came back to me this past day in a follow-up meeting. I was so embarrassed! And mad at myself! And so sad that I had made her feel like I didn’t respect or appreciate her! Because I do. However, we don’t know each other and so our styles, which are totally different, didn’t have a chance to complement each other and caused a blockade.

I felt so stupid. I didn’t even realize the comments I had made. When it was brought up, I’m sure the look of confusion was apparent. “I said what? No, of course I think she was an excellent choice to help me get back into the groove! Geez, I am so sorry that she felt like that or even if I didn’t, that my actions could have made her feel like that!”

It just goes to show I haven’t been around enough adults this past year. I was hoping to apologize directly as soon as it came up, but ran out of time. I’m hoping I can get past my total embarrassment/chicken-ess and let her know how much I truly appreciate what she’s done.

I guess I was trying to make chit-chat, maybe try and make me not feel like such an idiot as some of the details of my return-to-work plan don’t account the time I’ve already put in. But I really need to think about what I say next time. Into remission, FIMD! I’m finished with you!

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