Saturday, 31 August 2013

A story of lunch

Today marks the final day of August. I have finally had a day to myself and the majority of it was spent on hold listening to weird and wonderful 'on hold' music and apologetic messages informing me that I was next in line to speak to the friendly customer service representative who would be able to solve all my worldly worries and provide me with the answer to life. Well, not quite. But I did indeed spent the most part of today on hold to various broadband providers and to Orange customer services feeling rather frustrated as I had intended to spend today catching up with myself, going to the gym, and calling a good friend for a catch up. I did get to the gym eventually - always look for the positive!

The positive also is that I eventually got everything sorted. However, I found myself increasingly feeling all kinds of negative feelings toward the poor people on the receiving end of my phone calls. I then asked myself, why, oh why am I training in a career which relies on people and communication when people are exactly who I'd like to avoid right now! Sure enough, I am training to help people and in this situation, I was the one seeking help. But people are people. Regardless of what the situation is, we will inevitably encounter those who we never wish to let go, and those who for some unidentified reason, simply do not 'gel' with us.

For instance, I sat down to lunch one day this week and was joined by three other people. I like to think of myself as being fairly open and accepting. But at the end of this lunch, I challenged this assumption and wondered if my feelings were justified or if I simply have to learn a little patience. Four of us sat down with our meals. After fifteen minutes, three of us had completed every last piece of food on our plates and not spoken a word. The fourth had not even picked up her cutlery and had a full plate of food due to her not pausing in her speaking and not even interacting with anyone else on the table. I wish to goodness that I can be the person who accepts and welcomes this person regardless, but I guess it's about the filtered response rather than the immediate feelings. I am human. We are all human in fact. I don't 'gel' with everyone, not everyone gels with me; but the basic principles of respect and kindness (I like to hope...) should always be present. No human being deserves to be disrespected, even if they do take up the entire lunch break with their own monologue.

Back to basics - even the principle of a lunch break is a relative novelty for me now. Coming from student life, sessional work, and modelling work, the last time I had a designated  'lunch break' was a good few years ago when I worked a part time job in retail (never again!!!). It seems that these days, a lunch break is not a regularly used phrase in my vocabulary. But this week I have been training for my new job as a disability support worker at my University, so an hours lunch break has been given each week and it has been oddly welcomed. The training has been good... We've covered all things relating to disability from physical, learning, mental health issues, health conditions... I am really looking forward to beginning the job. it will be nice to be back in a job of substance. A lot of new information, new regulations, and new people. But I am looking forward to it.

Tomorrow is September. And change has begun

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