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Forest Through The Trees

As a result of getting into the CLS master’s categorical program, I felt it only proper to let my new manager know that I had new circumstance to deal with. Afterall she has been nothing but supportive and honest the entire time I have worked with her. To top it off she had just given me the opportunity in March to work are as pharm tech at a brand-new facility in a brand-new field. I let her know when I was to start classes and she set to work trying to transition me to an hourly job position so that I would not lose my job at the hospital. After completing the application, the interview, the transfer, etc; another problem presented itself. The hospital decided to have pharmacy drop staffing in order to make up for the financial losses of the pandemic slow down procedures. The pharmacy chose to eliminate any new hourly positions in order to save money.

Somethings I noticed about this plan of action didn’t make sense, but often large corporations make nonsensical moves in order to continue to give insane raise to the higher up’s. First of all, hourly employees were not benefitted. This means they cost less than fulltime employees. Technically, there is nothing stating you have to schedule them period. So why this was eliminated and not another position, is beyond me. Perhaps, it is too difficult with the current designed workflow. Perhaps, it just the general inflexibility of the department overall. I honestly have no real answers. However, my manager pulled me into her office one day to do me the favor of warning me.


“If I were you, I would start looking for other jobs.” She cautioned. My heart sank and my stomach did a flip. I went outside to cry after bargaining with her (like she had any say other than all she had already done.) Then I went outside to sob from the shock. This was the first job I had held for this long. This was the first job I allowed to be my only job. I had put my all into this company, not to mention my trust. There were no words.

I applied for other lateral movements in the company. I also put in applications for every hospital hiring July 1st within a 45-minute drive from my home. I even applied to community, retail, and insurance positions again. Jobs that I knew I loathed but I knew would work with school. I even considered going back to food service despite the new and present dangers of such a position.

Luckily, my family and fiancé were nothing but supportive. Even my mentors sent me job options to apply for. Finally, in early August, I hear from another hospital one of my good friends, and even better mentors had sent me an application for. I applied, it seemed to go well, and I was excited to start a new leaf elsewhere. One day I received a call offering me the position I wanted, but they offered me much less than I was currently making. So, I asked them to consider a counter offer. They said they would contact me with the decision. Two days later they came through, and with a raise at that! I was so happy. I danced around my messy office and tried not to sound like I was out of breath from jumping around.

The weeks roll by and I started the transition process. I had already booked a vacation for Ryan’s birthday so I stuck to it and decided that I would somehow do orientation and onboarding from rural beach town. The pressure of showing up to things virtually really took away from my vacation time and never gave me the time to melt any stress. I decided to destress with cocktails… Which never ends badly, am I right?! Needless to say, my quarantinis did quite a number on my tummy.

Finally, after some much needed vacation time, a trip to the emergency dept. and attending classes nervously and awkwardly with looming imposter syndrome; I managed to survive it all. PTSD and panic attacks were surprisingly low compared to the tension I felt in my neck and shoulders.

With only a few days until I was to start a new position 50 minutes from my home, I received a text to contact my manager ASAP. When I had a moment, I rang her to see what was going on. However, I knew none of this was her fault. HR has been in trouble for how bad they are.

“I received an email that they fixed my ticket about your employment. I understand if you do not want to stay but if you want the hourly position, the job is yours.” She explained apologetically.

“What?! Are you serious? This is so insane. Sorry, but can I please have proof of my employment before I make any decisions?” I doubted.

“I completely understand, let me forward this to you.” She replied.

It was clear and in the system. I would lose my benefits but I would remain hourly as an employee. Still feeling uneasy, I now had to make a new decision. Would I move forward with a higher rate of pay, where I needed to be retrained, 50 minutes away, at a for profit hospital? Would I stay in this twisted system a bit longer where I can walk and ride my bike, at lower pay, but I would have an easier time getting between work and class and already have connections and mentors, at a non-profit that accepts everyone? People had spent their precious free time writing recommendations and talking me up to get me employed, and here I am considering taking back this organization that made all these promises, ultimatums, and essentially cast me aside. If I hadn’t been an abusive relationship with my place of employment for 4 years would I be so plagued by this decision?

Feeling salty, I decided to stay. I would however, only give the time I had to in order to keep the position and make sure I maintained a 4.0 GPA while in school. I would apologize but I am not going to do that when this is what is best for me. I could better myself in order to step up at a time when patients were going to need people in my field the most. So instead I will leave it at this… I hope your name never crosses my bench, but if it does, I promise I will do everything I can to get your team the information about you they need.

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McAllister Rybak, LLC. | Richmond, VA | mcallister.rybak.photo@gmail.com

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