Sunday, October 9, 2011

Being thankful in these strange new circumstances...

Since finishing my contract at the Federal Court earlier this year, I've been feeling ready to go back to work full-time. I set out to find a job, and long story short, I was hired for a full-time permanent position in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. Very excited, I was. Started on a contract from August 22nd to the 31st - learned a bit about my job, got a little training. JF could now finally quit his job and take his much needed break and try to bring his health back up to par (hasn't been a great year for him).

September 1st - first day of my full-time permanent position, was spent on the picket line and I have been on strike ever since, with 1700 other members of McGill's support staff union. How bizarre is that?

I have gone from feeling like a hypocrite, to trying to be supportive of my fellow strikers, to being angry (likely looking sour), to being horribly depressed, to being fed up and looking for another job. I still waver from feeling to feeling, but am doing my best to stick it out and see what this job is like! I know I work with a great bunch of people, whom I've gotten to know a little on the picket lines, so this should be incentive enough, right? I try to tell myself that every day.

I've also tried to motivate myself to be productive at the end of my picketing shift. It may not seem like much, but four hours of walking in a circle, five days a week, is exhausting physically, mentally and emotionally. The uncertainty of what is going to happen next is that hardest part for me, and I feel tired and blobbish much of the time. And I want to be at work. Ok, whining is officially over.

SO, from now on, I AM going to be as productive as possible and try to use the rest of my picketing days for good stuff. Cleaning up, cooking good food, spending time with my honey, sorting out my studio and getting back to making a few new things for holiday craft shows. This is my positive voice speaking.

Drumming keeps me sane! Arashi Daiko, the taiko group (Japanese drums) JF and I are members of, performed outdoors in Baie-Saint-Paul last weekend - 10 chilly degrees (Celsius)! This was on a morning visit to the beach - no skinny dipping, but a great time!

So on this Thanksgiving Day (in Canada!), looking at the big picture, JF and I have lived with much less, and are grateful that we have a roof over our heads and more than enough food to eat. We have family and friends and taiko and community and live in a safe city in a safe country. And we have two cats that entertain us to no end. In the grand scheme of things I do have a LOT to be thankful for. Don't we all?

Pretending the sun was out in Baie-Saint-Paul... merci pour les belles photos, Manon!