Things seem to be getting worse lately with my condition and it’s beginning to scare me a bit because I realize what is going on but feel fairly helpless to stop it.
Just as an update: if you’ve been reading this blog you know that my employer has not exactly been understanding of some of the byproducts of my condition and that a few people have taken advantage of my vulnerability to try to get rid of me.
I was almost killed on July 8, 2015 because of my employer. On Dec. 22, 2015 I was escorted off the premises by trumped up and untrue charges over something I supposedly said. All I need to say in my defense is that my employer’s own police investigator’s report called bullshit on the whole episode. But HR doesn’t care what their own police think.
Now that incident is to be revisited with two ‘new’ incidents that are so unbelievably ridiculous I find it hard to even write about them. But one employee seems to be driving the train on both of them and has graciously given HR more ammo. I have looked in the face of evil and it is not pretty. It hides behind shy smiles and silence. I can’t understand it.
My work since I have returned March 11 has been exemplary, as noted by my supervisor. It may not matter.
So this Wednesday I get to sit down with someone from HR and go through this charade again. My union rep will be with me.
At times like these, with my condition, my moods tend to warp all over the place but this is different. When I looked at the email asking for my ‘cooperation’ in this newest stage of the Inquisition, I shared it with my wife who immediately went to pieces. She had not even left for work and I was worried about her driving.
She has never been the same (nor have I) since the incident of July 8. I wish the people at work who are doing this could see her when she breaks down at news like this. I wish they could see when she freezes in the shower when the phone rings like it did July 8.
The hell with me. I’m supposed to protect and care for the woman I love and it seems I can’t do that without being dishonest with her which I can’t do. We are a team. When she broke her ankle in January 2015, I was there for her. She’s here for me. But this continues witch hunt is putting an enormous strain on her and it is not right.
This weekend has been exceptionally bad. I find my moods swinging so severely that even I am beyond distraught. I really don’t know what to expect Wednesday and the really bad thing is I feel like I am a wounded mouse being played with by a cat about to eat me. Just when I though this matter has been put to rest and I can continue to do my job and look forward to the future with some confidence, another email appears in my inbox.
This has now happened twice.
I can’t think of how someone not afflicted with a mental illness would take this. But I know what it is doing to me. My sleep is disturbed; my nerves are tighter than an overturned bull fiddle. My emotions are right on the surface. I’ll break into tears for no apparent reason. My appetite comes and goes. But seriously, one minute I’ll be laughing and cracking jokes and the next minute (actually about five minutes), I’ll be on the bed reaching for an Ativan and apologizing profusely to my wife for my inability to control myself, even though I know I don’t need to apologize. If I could control it, I would.
You can’t say to me (as some employees and the union rep said) not to let it worry you, it’s probably nothing big, just answer the questions, I don’t get the impression they’re trying to fire you, etc. etc. I remember very clearly the police officer, upset FOR me, telling me on Dec. 22, not to let it ruin my Christmas and the worst that could happen might be a small suspension.
“Just treat it like a paid vacation,” he said.
That paid vacation lasted 77 days. Strangely I did better in that period than I am doing now. It must be, as I have said, the cumulative effect of being dangled on a string for so long – just when you think you’re free, they jerk the string and it all comes back.
One would think they had read their Kafka pretty closely.
I don’t understand any of this. All I want to do is work. I have never threatened anyone. Since I have returned I have bent over backwards to be cordial, helpful and friendly. I don’t want anyone to feel the willies around me. I want to have friends – very much so – but I don’t understand when the people you thought were your friends throw that knife in your back.
If I screw up, I’m the first person to fess up. If I offend someone, I’m the first person to apologize, often profusely. I have talked myself blue trying to explain everything connected with my condition and would have offered a sincere apology to anyone who was truly offended or upset by anything I might have said.
But I was never asked. The accusers were unseen, anonymous, and worked in the shadows. The charges arrived suddenly, like a bolt of lightning. No one asked me to explain anything until months later in a tribunal (seriously) that was constructed as much to intimidate as it was to gather ‘information.’ And now this.
I kid people I work in an environment much like a person living in East Germany. But I’m really not kidding. I’m not the first one there or nationwide that has been subjected to such treatment. I know that. My heart goes out to all of them. I don’t know how they survived psychologically.
But here I am on a Sunday when I should be relaxing and, instead, my head is spinning, my nerves are shot, I’m filled with dread and the meds aren’t working. For an hour or two, I might snap out of it – I don’t know why – but then I’ll be cast down again. It gets worse at night. It’s like being on a roller coaster from Hell.
I had to write this. I had to get this out. I probably set my own personal typing speed record writing this. It was all off the top of my fevered head. They say that writing is the best therapy. Right now it’s the only thing that seems to be helping me focus.
I don’t know what the result of Wednesday’s latest interrogation will be. I don’t know whether I have a future. I believe this is a campaign designed to wear me down and pile up enough complaints to get rid of me. I fear this will never stop. I can’t quit – nothing out there for me at my age and with my experience. I’ve tried to find other jobs – no dice.
I tell myself what a great lawsuit I have if they fire me. That may well be true. The problem is – do I have the stones to see an uncertain process through to the end?
I’m trying to hold on. God help me, I really am.
“What has happened to me,’ K. went on, rather more quietly than before, trying at the same time to read the faces in the first row, which gave his speech a somewhat disconnected effect, ‘what has happened to me is only a single instance and as such of no great importance, especially as I do not take it very seriously, but it is representative of a misguided policy which is being directed against many other people as well. It is for these that I take up my stand here, not for myself…. ‘There can be no doubt…. – there can be no doubt that behind all the actions of this court of justice, that is to say in my case, behind my arrest and today’s interrogation, there is a great organization at work. An organization which not only employs corrupt warders, oafish Inspectors, and Examining Magistrates of whom the best that can be said is that they recognize their own limitations, but also has at its disposal a judicial hierarchy of high, indeed of the highest rank, with an indispensable and numerous retinue of sevants, clerks, police, and other assistants, perhaps even hangmen. I do not shrink from that word. And the significance of this great organization, gentlemen? It consists in this, that innocent persons are accused of guilt, and senseless proceedings are put in motion against them, mostly without effect, it is true, as in my own case. But considering the senselessness of the whole, how is it possible for the higher ranks to prevent gross corruption in their agents? It is impossible. Even the highest Judge in this organization can not resist it. So the warders try to steal the clothes off the bodies of the people they arrest, the Inspectors break into strange houses, and innocent men, instead of being fairly examined, are humiliated in the presence of public assemblies. The warders mentioned certain depots where the property of prisoners is kept; I should like to see these depots where the hard-earned property of arrested men is left to rot, or at least what remains of it after thieving officials have helped themselves” — Kafka, The Trial (pp.45-46).