Officially (via post) unemployed.
March 24th, 2012 marks the end of the current appointment period. Per the Stafford Act and the Conditions of Employment, you have not been reappointed. However, you are free to apply for an appointment within another Cadre.
Not exactly the letter I was expecting to receive today, but there you have it. I’ve worked with the government since 2004 and as a temporary, intermittent employee, they can choose to reappoint or not at will. I thought my work was strong. I have never received a poor performance review. And I have even had people request for me to be on their team(s) because they know about my work ethic and ability to get the job done.
In one sense, I’m not happy. I don’t know why the appointment wasn’t renewed and I’m not used to having a job and then not having one without another lined-up waiting in the wings (it’s actually quite embarrassing). In another sense, it now relieves the stress of what would happen should I be called-out to work in the immediate future before I finish my work with my doctors and therapists regarding my vision issues and how I’ll be able to keep working with them. And, by not having to travel cross-country I don’t have to worry about trying to get on a plane with Celeste and having issues with other passengers.
True, the job has always been temporary. It’s kind of morbid, when you think about it, being the only person watching The Weather Channel and rooting for the hurricane so that there would be work so I could pay my bills. Oh, I’d always temper that with the hopes that no one would be killed or seriously injured. Just enough damages so I could use my skills helping others and making sure there’s food on the table back home.
I’ve emailed my (now former) supervisors for a personal explanation — just so I’ll know whether or not it’s worth trying to apply with another Cadre. If they’re saying something awful about me that I don’t know about, it would be foolish to put them down as a reference and apply with others who have or will hear the same things said. With today being Saturday, I know I probably won’t get a response until Monday, if then (since everyone’s busy). I hope that they’ll be able to give me the information needed and perhaps suggest other Cadre managers that I should speak with regarding applying to work in their units where my education, experience, and talents would be well-suited.
Am I angry? No. Am I happy? No. My feelings at the moment are mixed — which is not unusual for someone who’s bi-polar. It’s weird to think that a lot of my friends will continue their careers without me and we won’t have those wonderful stories to tell together of the good and bad times we shared. Many of my friends taught me what it was like to work in this field; many of my other friends I helped get started on their way.
If nothing else, I can look back at 8 years of employment with the satisfaction that I did my job. I did it well. People were helped because of me. And even though I didn’t always receive a “thank you” or a “kiss my backside” (depending on the situation), I was there and did the best I could. And knowing that my best helped others achieve their best, or at least attempt to get back to “normal” after what was possibly the “worst” time in their life, makes a big difference to me.