An open letter to nobody

I've had enough of the euphemisms. I've made the wrong decisions, and already it's wrecking havoc.

It seems everybody has asked me, at one point or another, to think positive. As much as I've gotten tired of that, I have actually been doing it, perhaps unwittingly. I was very much apprehensive after the examinations, and when I got the job offer, my heart sank, because I didn't want to take the job anymore. I took the chance anyway, thinking that I'll be in it for the experience, and that I can get out after six months, which is the only time I can freely do so.

When I began working, I took joy in the fact that I have a broadband Internet connection, that I can listen to stuff I can't listen to at home, and that I am basically free, and in an actual city setting at that. I took joy at my most mundane of articles, at the few profiles that don't read like timelines, at the feedback I get from my bosses in Seattle, and at photos I uncover for the articles that require them. I found the way I seemingly automate my fingers' movements on the keyboard amusing. Overall, it should be going pretty well.

But eleven weeks into my work, I can't use these to cover up for the more pressing things that have affected me. As much as Ariane probably insisted that I change my mindset in hopes that I attract conversations, nothing of that sort has happened. As time progresses, and in the things I've been learning from the people I've left behind and the people I'm forced to coexist with, I feel like I've ultimately done the worst decision in my life.

Some were probably amused at the idea that I spent ten hours of my life online, which is true; couple that with virtually unrestricted Internet access and you have what constitutes the perfect world. I've been writing celebrity profiles forever, and although I've been learning stuff about who came from where and who speaks Welsh, I can't help but find my life to be boring. I've said this before: you can only write about the same thing so many ways. The next thing I know, my blog entries will begin with an adjective, a noun, a name, "was born on," a date, and a place. And that's all I've been doing.

Perhaps worse, I feel more like a robot than a worker. I don't blame my employers, though - perhaps for now, although the world dictates that I can't hold a grudge against my bosses and my colleagues, much more blog about them like what I'm doing now. But I've been at this for quite a while now, and I still resort to talking to myself in the restroom just to keep my thoughts working. I can only keep in so much. I may be talking to people online, but I can only express myself so much. I've been looking for opportunities to meet up with old friends - and people I haven't met but already know - but I end up feeling insecure myself, because they have something that I don't: connections.

The problem with talking to your co-workers online is, everything is left impersonal. I know, there's always those boundaries that you shouldn't cross, but I end up receiving a sense of insincerity, as much as Neobie could say "that's weird, it says it's undeliverable." I wanted to poke fun at the fact that I'm seated at the sixth desk, which means I'm surrounded by a different team completely, but when you realize that the four other writers, for some reason, have a closer bond, you feel that you should be in that circle too, at least partly, because you're doing almost the same things as they are.

Heck, since I'm at it, I can't help but think that I should have somehow ended up with, at the very least, an excuse for an off-word bond with Neobie. I can't count the similarities further, and rather than I end up discussing the latest trivialities between us with Carmel, I should be doing something about it, right? Come to think about it, it's obviously beyond the similarities I found out inadvertently, but what else can you do with someone who only eats a sandwich for lunch and coughs incessantly through my headphones and prefers to scribble in notebooks instead of... what else have I learned?

I remember talking to Miss Abi about this, a week before the lunch-out. I honestly told her I am having a hard time with staying isolated throughout the day, but I also admitted that I can't do anything about it. It's the nature of my work, understandably, with all five of us typing down stuff, impossibly disturbed. But when a conversation among the four other writers break through the headphones, I can't help but feel more than annoyed. It's as if I haven't done everything. It's as if I don't exist - and yes, that's exaggerating things, but it eventually affects my output. I'm still doing profiles, after all. Everybody else is working on news articles - yes, even Neobie. And we're supposedly working together. And I'm supposedly a good writer, if my friends are to be believed. And now I feel that I'm the worst performer?

Perhaps it's a matter of the shattered ego, I thought. Perhaps it's the same old adjustment pangs - besides, it took me two terms to feel comfortable with my blockmates, and by then it's all over. Perhaps it's just all my expectations, or whatever excuse I made up for it, or whatever composes them now. But if there's one thing I remember from that meet-up with my college friends two weeks ago - even if it felt like I was merely eavesdropping on Ariane and Jackie's conversations - it's that I absolutely don't deserve what I'm going through right now. I might have done wrong things, I might have done nothing at all, or I might have been waiting for the supposed rewards of my efforts, but heck, it's been too long. Perhaps I'm just being impatient, like I always am - Miss Abi was surprised that, despite my short attention span, I still manage to write eighteen profiles daily - but here it is. The start of my impatience.

So, should I go? The original plan was for me to start looking for a new job by the end of my probation period - perhaps something closer to my industry of choice, provided I can do just that. Never mind my lack of connections. I thought I can manage to at least get somewhere and not feel like I relied on others to deliver. I'm barely halfway through the six-month period, and already I'm thinking of leaving, maybe after I tell my parents, maybe after I find a better job, maybe when I find something that's bound to challenge me and excite me and stimulate me and reward me for the enthusiasm I've always given to everything. Am I being bitchy for asking too much? Perhaps, but if I myself feel that I'm going nowhere, then I might as well go.

Having thought all that last night, I had this urge to cry. I was just lying on my bed, talking to myself, pretending that my life's the subject of another talk show on the radio. And then I wanted to cry. I can feel the tears come to my eyes, but somehow I can't get them out. And yet I can't fall asleep, hoping that I wake up forgetting everything that I feel and act as if it's just another day at work, me hoping that I'll have a decent conversation, and a decent mindset. Well, if that's what ends up happening, what's the use of weeping?

I came to work today feeling "slightly," as I told Ella the day before. I was later than usual, and I was off to a slow start, but I told myself that I'll try my best to stay focused at what I'm doing, even if it's starting to really descend towards blandness. No changing status messages, no looking to the right, no staring at the hair, no hesitation about restroom breaks, if you only have to release whatever pent-up emotions you have left.

And then Les said it in the most succinct way. "It must be killing you," she said.

I might sound exaggerated, like my parents always claim me to be, but this time I perfectly know what I'm going through, and I perfectly know how to put it. I may decide to wait it out still, and hold on to that remaining bit of positivity, but tomorrow's another day, and it's going to be everything I've just written, all over again.

And your responses...

law of attraction!
sabi nila nag w-work yun.

Blogger N.9/17/2008     

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