Thursday, 25 June 2009

Stress from the past

It's been wonderful to relax over the past few days in the sunny weather, with lots of animals and birds sunning themselves on the back lawn.  By contrast I've been thinking about things which have caused me stress in the past which might have affected my lymphoma.

The way in which a school where I was happily working was closed really hurt us all.  It was devastating particularly for those trying to obtain new jobs.  Staff aged over 50 were less worried as they qualified for their pensions.  Some teachers already had part-time jobs in other schools so were less affected. 

Just three of us full-timers needed jobs but found we were obstructed at every turn.  One made a decision to return to France which left two of us.  Although we were experienced and successful we found we were making the shortlists, only not getting interviews.  We found that either references were not being sent or said things like “keeps her desk tidy”! 

We had a term to find new jobs but with no success.  Proper references were only written during our last week of employment in July.  Schools would not be recruiting again until employment for January the following year.

 During our last term before the closure of the convent school we teachers even got a complaint that some of the nuns thought we were ignoring them and not smiling as normal.  We had to explain that we were worried about our mortgages and family commitments. 

Part of the stress was caused by the fact that we could not show our anxiety and had to maintain a front of professionalism for the girls to make sure they passed their exams and had a good last term at their school as they saw their fellow pupils disappearing off to new schools.  The loss of friendship amongst girls and staff was very sad.

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