My first day at work was an absolute shocker. Initially my fears were the staff would not like me, and that I would be too quiet and never fit in. but I was completely thrown in the deep end with this job. I never thought I would get through it and quite often in my first week there I contemplated leaving. When I started, our director Julia went on maternity leave. The other worker went on stress leave. The others were just casuals and we all only knew as much as each other about the centre. Being the only full time, permanent employee I realised that more was put on to me. I went home crying every single day wondering why God put me in such a horrible position. Even the fact that my group were the 2-3 yr olds instead of preschoolers really depressed me. I prayed that either another job would come available, or that some changes occur quickly here.
Let me add in here that work has been such a blessing to me. Three years later I can see the benefits of being thrown into the deep end. It has made me such a more confident person and I feel I play the role that I should at work. That, I think, has a lot to do with having to learn everything first hand at work. I still am with the 2-3 year olds and actually am in charge of that room. I would not give my toddlers up for anything now. They give an unconditional love to those they trust, and by the way they look up to me (no I am not being vein). To me, trust is something that is earned. If you haven’t earned a child’s trust you would know it, because that child would not have the confidence to sit on your lap, or to run up to you the moment they arrive. This is how I know the children like and trust me.
Jenny came on the scene as a casual the first week I started. She is a beautiful and such a fun person. I looked forwards to the Thursday and Friday when I knew she would be in because she had such high spirits which kept me going I think. Jenny funnily enough picked up on my ridiculous eating habits, such as nothing, or maybe a few slices of cucumber. She often had a laugh about this, and even reminds me of it today.
I never bothered to take lunch to work because we never used to get lunch breaks. It didn’t bother me one bit at all. Occasionally Judi brought in a block of chocolate just so we could munch on something yummy during the day. We were all so stressed that at least we had something to look forwards too.
I really looked up to Jenny, and felt a closeness with her because she is so motherly. Again there goes me looking for a mother in someone who is not mine. She has three of her own children. As things continued to change at work, Jenny informed us that at this time she couldn’t work with us anymore. I was absolutely devastated about this. She was the one person I could talk to easily at work then, and who I felt valued the work that I did.
Jenny came with me for my graduation night at tech. It was important to have her come along, especially since she offered to come, and she wanted to come. I felt awkward seeing my old tafe friends though, only because I withdrew from everyone in the last few weeks of tech. I wasn’t at their level, and was different. I didn’t do drugs or sleep around. That was my choice though, and knowing that made it easier to deal with and to be honest I really didn’t care about losing their friendships. In some ways I look back on it and realise that Hanna was probably sick of hearing about the eating disorder shit, and wanted to have real conversations with people. The others I was never close to like I was with Hanna, so it honestly didn’t matter. That night my biggest concern was did I look skinny enough, or did anyone think I put on weight. Nobody said a thing about appearance. I did look skinny though wearing a size 8 pair of tight pants, but they were actually too big for me. Arriving there I suddenly had nothing to talk about with any one. There was a lot of general chit chat, but all pointless. None of us cared about the other receiving their Associate Diploma, sad as that is to say. I do know that I cared that Jenny was there to watch and take a photo.
Not eating became more of a hard task. Although I didn’t bring lunch it never stopped me nibbling on biscuits and fruit. Using more energy I became more hungry. It was so depressing losing the control I thought I had. I kept my walking up, and walked to Hazelbrook station every morning. But it never felt like enough because I was eating more. Sometimes I was even tempted to make and eat dinner which would be these disgusting fat and gluten free noodles with vegetables.
It seemed selfish to be depressed because I had so much, especially a job. Except I felt so rotten some days. I think it was mainly from the big lifestyle change and not being able to control my hunger.
I had stopped seeing the counsellor and dietitian now. There was no point. Hey I was eating so that obviously meant nothing was wrong.