Tuesday, November 6
To cry or not to cry
Well, it finally happened. I hit the wall today. I had a melt down in a meeting. I could feel the tears coming and all I could do was stare at my VP and nod and try to maintain control. I eventually made it to my desk when a friend immediately came over to talk about some show tickets she's just gotten hold of. I lost it. She felt terrible. I tried to explain that I'd just hit my limit. I've just got too much on my plate and I can't take it anymore. She tried hard to calm me and make me feel better. She did but I was definitely a woman on the verge.
I then had to visit the ladies room. I looked for the route with least resistance (aka: the fewest people). I rushed past the big boss' office. I didn't even look in her office because, frankly, I didn't want eye contact. She somehow knew something was wrong and called me back. I stood in her door, again in tears. She had her back to me and said "How are you?". Her Assistant was looking at me with a panicked look and not knowing what to do. I just looked at her shaking my head, unable to respond. The boss finally turned around and I lost it. (Bummer!) Luckily, she's a fantastic lady and immediately jumped into action. "What is it? Was it forecasting?" (We did our quarterly finacial forecasting and some of my numbers sucked.) I cried/laughed and said "That was the highlight of my day." She quickly shut her door, patted her couch for me to sit down and said "Are you not getting support?!" I tried to be politically correct while explaining and listing all of my responsibilities. She gasped and said "Oh, God... that's right..." as the list grew. She immediately took one biggie off my plate. I admit I was somewhat relieved but knew others might not be so happy about that turn of events. We sat and chatted for a while and she helped me feel better. I told her I didn't want to be the lame girl who they can't give projects to. She said "No! I'd never think that. It takes a much stronger person to admit they're overwhelmed than one who just sits and takes." She then instructed me to go home immediately (it was getting late). She said to avoid eye contact on the way out or it would get me going again. She told me she knew this from first hand experience and it all made me feel better.
I then called my new boss on the way home, caught her in her car, and told her what had happened. She too was surprised but incredibly supportive. As I explained all I was doing she realised I was the "go to girl" for way too many people and we discussed how to change that in a positive way.
I'm now exhausted. I rarely cry but when I do it really knocks me out. The good news is that I tend to sleep well after a good cry. I'm glad I spoke to some people about it. I trust them and think it can get better soon.
As mentioned yesterday, I'll be out of the office tomorrow. I'm thinking that's probably a good thing. I should have known the stress was getting to me. I had a terrible stress dream last night (which never happens). Also, I can't really remember the last time I cried because of work. In fact I'm the one who's always joking "There's no crying in (fill in your department name)!". I hope it stops soon. I don't like being the crybaby!
Posted by Lucy at 8:28 PM