Woohoo work update!

I have a continued position at my work!!!! It is in a different team, doing different stuff, but I have a job. I am so very, very thankful and relieved. Happy early Thanksgiving to me (even if it isn’t celebrated here in Finland and I’ve had a hard time remembering it this year).

Yesterday, I had an “interview” with someone I hadn’t talked to before and the team leader with which I have a position now. She had only sent me the invite for this chat Monday evening after I had already gone home. So, it was a surprise to me when I came to work Tuesday morning. Today, at 9:37 am exactly, I got a chat message from the same lady, my future team leader, asking if I had time to come talk to her. She said that in situations like this, she wants to have the talks and notify everyone as quickly as possible. I couldn’t agree more! I was anxious and hopeful walking into the room, but I was extremely happy and even a bit surprised when she offered me a position with her team. I did tear up a bit, but managed to not cry.

This new position/restructured organization doesn’t take place until December 1st, but it will still be some time after that before I will start learning my new position. I will be needed in my current position to help transition work to the outsourcing company and getting the new team situated. I don’t mind it taking time, because I have a continued job!

So, happy day for me. And unfortunately it is going to be a sad and heartbreaking day for many others.

And now for me to get back to work and quite blogging. 😀


p.s. I wonder if my phone is broken… I sent a message to Mr Siili and best friend, R, but neither has responded yet. 😦 Although to be fair to Mr Siili, he is probably still sleeping as he hasn’t been sleeping to well at night because of a nasty cough.

Stress manifesting as physical symptoms

I find myself wishing this time away, I just want the days to go faster and for me to be numb to it all. I’ve been trying to make a conscious effort to not wish my days away. Especially since Paxlet has come to this world, but even before while I was pregnant and maybe even during that last cycle before finding out I was pregnant. So, this is a bit strange to want to wish the days away again.


There is less than a week before we, everyone in the service center at my work, find out who has a continued job and who doesn’t. I wish I could say I wasn’t stressed about it, but I would be lying if I did. I am constantly thinking about work: what will happen if I don’t get a continuation (I think I might cry when I find out and the dreaded looking for a new job will begin) and what might happen if I do get to continue (I think I’ll cry when I find out). This constant thinking and remembering about what is about to happen at work is taking its toll on me. I am stressed and it is showing up physically.

I think one of the most common symptoms of stress that I hear a lot about is sore and tense muscles, especially in the shoulder area. I do get that some, but that isn’t the worst of my symptoms. My never fail stress or strong emotional symptoms are the feeling of an oncoming UTI and itchy bumps (hives?), mostly on my hands and sometimes on my feet. I’ve known that I react to stress and pent up emotions with UTI symptoms since I was 16. This hive stuff is relatively newer. At least in relation to stress it is new.


Just before my 16th birthday, I was dating/had a boyfriend named Ben*. Ben was my first. No one was home at my house and we did it upstairs in my bedroom, on my bed. He told me that it would hurt some and to think of it like a golf ball being pushed through a garden hose. (Yes, he actually said that.) He also told me afterward that no one, especially not my mom, whom I lived with, would know that I just had sex, even if I felt different. It was a summer fling and I snuck out of the tent** a lot that summer to go meet up with him and his friends. I can’t exactly remember how it ended. I’m not even sure we had an ending or if we just didn’t see each other as much anymore and that was that.

In any case, I ended up with a UTI. I went to the doctor, got the medication, took said medication but I still had symptoms. I think I ended up doing 2 or 3 rounds of medications because I still had UTI symptoms and excruciating pain radiating to my finger tips and toe tips when I peed. The doctor was baffled by my symptoms, as my labs came back clean. I was then sent in for some invasive testing***, which I usually don’t remember or think about. It must have been traumatizing for a 16 year old me. It was around this time of the testing and several months after Ben and I had stopped seeing each other, that my mom asked me if all of this could be due to anger, unhappiness or unresolved issues relating to Ben. (I don’t think she knew I had had sex with him, or at least I didn’t tell her, but maybe my stepmom had.) It was at that point that I realized I was a bit mad at him and that I was keeping some emotions bottled up and unacknowledged inside me. Once I thought things through and worked it out with myself, the symptoms went away. Just like that and immediately.

And so it has been, for the most part, over the years. More often than not, my UTI symptoms are a product of my stress and unacknowledged emotions. Once I take the time to think about my issues and what could be causing them, the symptoms will go away by the next morning (after a sleep).


Thankfully during this stressful time with work, the UTI pains haven’t been that bad. Actually, it hasn’t been that bad at all. I just have an almost constant feeling of tension in my lady bits. It hasn’t progressed past that and I think that is due to my drinking enough water and being aware of my stress.

The itchy bumps on the other hand, literally, are annoying the crud out of me. My right hand seems to be more affected than the left. At this moment, almost my entire palm area, but especially the thumb base, has little raised bumps just under the skin. If I happen to scratch my hand or rub it in just the wrong way, it will start to itch like crazy! I am doing my best to keep my hands lubricated with lotion (I have no idea if that helps or not) and not scratching! Even when it itches painfully.


*He was the oldest-youngest man I ever knew (so said the guys he hung out with and who later became friends of my own, even to this day). He wore white jeans, cowboy boots and a leather jacket. He also had long hair in the back (longer than mine) and bangs. He was such an 80s man and he was only a few months older than myself.

**My mom’s place was impossible to sneak out of, but because it was summer, I convinced her that it would be fun for my friend and I to sleep in a tent outside in our yard. (She never could figure out why I was so tired and sleeping until late each day, or so she commented one day.) Once my mom’s light was off in her room and I waited a bit, off I would go for the night and be back by early morning. That was a fun summer!

***I had to drink water until I was ready to explode and then pee on this special toilet set up in the middle of a huge room with no one around (thankfully) but lots of medical equipment. I had to pee as fast and as hard as I could so the toilet could measure it. I believe this was also the same period of time when I had to pee into a huge diaper/pad-thing while standing and having it x-rayed or something. And then I was put on a table where they stuck tubing up my urethra, filled my bladder up quite full, did an ultrasound and then they emptied it out again.

Work interview update

Thanks for the positive thoughts and well wishes for Monday’s “Recruitment discussion”. I think it went well, but one can never really tell. The two ladies seemed impressed with my answers and what I had to say, but at the same time, they could just be blowing smoke up my ass. (I have no idea why that phrase comes to mind and I actually had to look it up, because I kept thinking “air” instead of smoke.) The whole discussion was only 30 minutes, but we covered quite a bit of words in that time.

They asked me if I speak Finnish, to which I switched over to it and just continued what I was saying from there. That seemed to impress them. Although, I’m not sure why. I have lived here for 14,5 years. Maybe because Americans are generally (as a whole?) not that good at languages or at least learning another country’s language? Or maybe because… I don’t know. I know I made a lot of mistakes, but that didn’t stop me from talking.

The ladies also were impressed that I had taken the time to write out some notes. (I didn’t want to forget a few key points.) Their reactions (and possibly words) said it the first time around when I told them I needed to look at my notes to make sure I got my thoughts straight and words out correctly. And then at the end of the “interview” one of them said again how she was impressed with my notes. I didn’t need nearly as much as I had written, but I am glad I wrote them anyway!

I now kind of wish I had made my 2nd choice my first choice. And I still worry that my working part time (I leave work by 2pm or a bit after) will reduce my chances of getting a continued position with the company (or even finding a new job that will want me part time, permanently). But all in all, I think I did well in the talk and they could see that I love what I do as I got quite animated as I told stories examples some of the cases I’ve worked on.

I think I’ve gotten pretty good lately about not wishing my time away and wanting time go faster, but I really would like this next 7-9 days to just fly by. I’m stressing myself out enough that it is manifesting physically. I have an almost constant feel of a UTI coming on (mostly in the evenings when I have time to think). And I have been getting some stress blisters on my hands. They hurt if I bump them even though they are basically invisible, unless I scratch them because they itch like freaking crazy. I also feel like i am getting sick, although I don’t think this is so much stress related, but I am sure it doesn’t help.

Interview in a few hours

My “Recruitment discussion”, as they aren’t calling it an interview, will be at 12:30 today. I’ve prepped and thought about some of the things I want to say. I’ve also taken into consideration what I’ve heard my co-workers bitching about from their own discussions. I guess I’m as ready as I can be.

Wish me luck!

We’ll find out one way or another next week sometime.

Apple-oat pancakes, Finnish style and a quick work update

I made some omena-kaurapannarit (apple-oat pancakes) this last weekend. The link and recipe is in Finnish, but upon request, I’ll translate it for you all. I didn’t follow the recipe to a tee, because we didn’t have any oat-milk, but they were yummy with regular milk!


Makes 15 pancakes


2 apples
1 1/4 cup (3 dl) oat milk
2 eggs
2 cups (5 dl) flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup (1/5 dl) sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons oil

Some oil for frying


Wash and grate the apples. Mix the oat milk, eggs and add to the mixed dry ingredients. Season with the sugar and salt. Add the grated apple and oil. Mix into a dough. Let the batter swell for half an hour at room temperature.

Make small pancakes by frying the batter in oil in a small frying (crepe/pancake) pan.  Serve with jam and whipped soy- or vanilla sauce.

My notes: I made quite a few more than 15 pancakes. I guess mine must have been smaller (and thinner) than in the picture.
Also, I have no idea why it says to “season” with the sugar and salt. Maybe if you don’t want to add as much as the recipe calls for?


I realized part of the reason I am reacting so emphatically to my co-workers’ bitch fests is that I am PMSing in a major way. (Hello AF.) That has helped me to calm down and step away from the situation a bit.

Also, I made an informal meeting with a former team leader, who I like very much and trust her words. She also helped talk me away from the ledge of crazy. She understands where I was coming from, especially knowing the people who were involved. This quick meeting also gave me a chance to ask her about one of the positions I was interested in, as she was the contact person for it. I told her my concern about working only part time right now and how that might affect me getting a new position. (Legally I am within my writes to work less hours until Paxlet starts 3rd grade.) She said then she would have been up for the chopping block also, as she is working shorter hours too. She went on to tell me some of the several factors that they are looking at when deciding who will be accepted for these new positions and how many hours you work (or don’t work) is not one of them. I felt so much better after talking to her!

And, minutes before I went to this meeting, I got an email for my “recruitment discussion”. It’s on Monday! Not Wednesday the 13th, when I have my dentist appointment. Phew. Please think great communication and interviewing thoughts for me for Monday!