To my poor unloved blog,
It has been so long since I have shown you love and posted to you but now I am back again. I want to go back in time a little with this post and cover in detail the last 4-5 months of my life. I know I have touched on things from this period in previous posts but I was then unable to go into any detail whatsoever. So here we go.
We start back at the beginning of May, I was stuck once again in a Jobless cycle of unemployment after Barclays let us go at the end of November. December was taken up by Irene’s illness which involved a lot of trips to and fro from the hospital, which a hell of a lot of parking charges too. When you have someone whose classified as critically ill, you tend not to think of car parking charges etc. It was only when she was back home and recovering throughout the month of January that the hard times started to hit. January to March was very difficult, living on next to nothing and the remainder of what was on Credit Cards. I was starting to get into some ‘serious shit’ financially once again. Somehow I managed to keep up repayments on my car, which is my singular essential key to transport.
Out of the blue I received an email from a company I have previously worked for called Swissport. Those who know me and have done for many years will know I briefly worked for Swissport at Heathrow Airport back in my University Days. I say briefly, I lasted two weeks before I had to relocate back to Liverpool. It was a shame as all in all I enjoyed that job and never thinking there would be an opportunity to do that kind of work again I was left in a kind of limbo. However at the end of April I received an email from Swissport telling me that there was a match to my details for employment opportunities nearby. – It has been years, eleven to be exact since I entered my preferences for work on the Swissport site, so I was a little shocked to receive this notification. I replied on a whim and a week later I was called in for a recruitment session. A week after that I was called back for an Interview. Two weeks later I was starting my two weeks of training. Things happened fast.
Training was really four days in the classroom learning things that really didn’t help when out Airside. From the fifth day of training and for the whole of the following week the ‘training’ was to insert us into working gangs and basically just do the job. This kind of hands-on training rarely works but we survived it somehow.
On what should have been my first week ‘on-shift’ I was forced to take the week off, unpaid. This was not an ideal way to start my employment with Swissport (or as it was known Smart Handling by Swissport), and I am sure they thought I was faking things. In this first week I missed my chance to get trained up and do the Airside Driving test. This was something that would on the whole hamper my progress during my time with the company. But as things worked out anyway… well we are skipping ahead here. Back to that week. I was ill from the Friday evening and ended up being taken via Ambulance to A&E TWICE in a period of about six hours. The pain was intense and in the end was put down to ‘Trapped Wind’. All I really remember is laying on a bed in A&E screaming my head off at the fact that I couldn’t catch my breath. The second period at A&E included a stay in a recovery ward which allowed me to catch a couple of hours of sleep which is what I really needed to be able to deal with the pain.
After discharge I returned home which is where I stayed for just over a week. The way my shifts worked is that I had Monday and Tuesday off anyway, but I was still missing a full week on shift. After returning from A&E I went to the Doctors as advised by A&E to get the painkillers they recommended. My Doctor, who is a useless one that doesn’t give you the satisfaction of being listened to, decided he knew better and changed my medication. Regardless I was in bed for the whole week and the pain did slowly subside. I was back on shift before I was completely pain free but somehow got through it. This latest episode triggered at my insistence some investigations as to why this pain was happening on a semi-regular basis. In all honesty my Doctor really couldn’t give a shit and didn’t think there was anything to investigate “It’s wind, it’ll go away itself”. I was told on more than one occasion.
Through my insistence I was sent for a CT scan, which was a big deal for me really having a phobia of X-ray’s and the associated machinery. But I got through it. The results were inconclusive and three months later I was sent back for another CT. Got through that too. Next up was an ECG to rule out anything to do with my heart & chest. That was all clear too. – Given that this was done just after the latest ‘episode’, there was still no resolution to the pain or explanation of what was causing it. The Doctor then ordered an Ultrasound Scan which took from the third week in May till the first week in SEPTEMBER to come through, even then I couldn’t make the appointment time due to work. It was rescheduled for the first week in October. – Results I’ll come to in due course, but lets finish up on Work thoughts first.
So I returned after the week off ill to a chorus of “surprised to see you again Kev, we thought you’d left”.. So I must have made a great impression right? Never mind. Over the course of the next few months I went to work, did my job and came home. There was no point investing myself in embedding myself too deeply. There was nothing there really. It was a job I wanted to try to do again and with a little bit of a struggle and a rough start, I did complete my job tasks successfully. Not as well as I would have liked, but everybody is different and we all have different skills in different areas. I preferred to be inside, but only because I thought I’d get in the way less and let less people down than being outside and potentially fucking something up. So I owned my time inside and made sure I did a great job in there. For what it’s worth however, nobody really noticed anyway. There are some great guys there working hard at their jobs and limited by the same things that limited me. You are all in the same boat. There are some arseholes too, but they are everywhere right? All in all I was grateful for the chance and employment which came right when I needed a job.
The contact at the Airport was only ever till October 31st 2016 and temporary, part time at that (I don’t think I could have done full time permanently there physically, however that said when I look at the hours I did work, I was working full time hours anyway. I was contracted to work 20 hours per week and most weeks ended up around 37 hours anyway. I handed in my Resignation at the start of October and worked three weeks of notice for the company. On my last day I was put back outside on the ramp, which I expected if I am honest. The gang I was in was the same as the first gang I was with, so it felt good to get those final three flights out on time. On my walk out I am sure there was a beaming smile on my face!
“You resigned? What again?! What are you doing?”
In the background I had applied for a job with a company who I have been obsessed with for many years now, their story of success is a fascinating one for anybody who is interested, and my involvement with them started almost two years ago now. I wasn’t in a position to take the post offered by them at first, and they kindly held that position open for me for around six months before I had to throw in the towel on what was to me the start of my dream. That lead to some dark dark times for me, some of which I am sure I detailed in this blog. I didn’t consider another opportunity would come and so soon too.
I found another chance online and immediately applied for it. This lead to a recruitment day which I had to attend. This included and interview and 3 hours later I was handed another job offer from this company. The company in question is Amazon. I know what you may have heard about them as employers, I’ve heard the same too. I’ve done my research and this is what I want to do. I know I shocked many people when my interest in this company first came to light. Simply put I am 34 years old and still feel that I’ve not had an opportunity to really shine and show what I know I am capable of achieving. I am tired of working jobs for the sake of working jobs. Amazon to me is the potential start of a career. Amazon gives me the space to progress, the opportunity, supported opportunity at that, to progress and advance within the company. People forget ‘Amazon’ encompasses a hell of a lot more than the Retail side most people associate the company with. There are many many companies owned and operated by Amazon and within this ecosystem many many opportunities to dedicate my time towards progressing within.
From Saturday 1st October 2016, I’ll be able to call myself an Amazon Employee or Amazonian. I am starting where I think everybody should, on the floor at the bottom. It is my intention to go in as an open book, take it all in and ingest everything. Invest my time and energy into my work, perform well and take every opportunity to advance. This is the start of my dream, be happy for me.
But it won’t be plane sailing, I know it wont.. My Doctor sent me for this Ultrasound scan on Thursday 8th September and he received the results of this back the following day. It was only because I took myself to see a Doctor – Any doctor who had an appointment the same day – about an unrelated issue that I discovered the results from the Ultrasound Scan. I have Gallstones. Those are what is causing the painful episodes. I have to have the Gallbladder removed. The appointment could be in less than a week. It could be really quick keyhole surgery, but if it’s complex it may involved a hospital stay, I won’t know till I attend the clinic. Now this was a complete shock to me. Considering that my Doctor had this information on the 9th September, and on the 23rd September I’d been told NOTHING. This pisses me off greatly. There are two weeks there in which I could have been into clinic and potentially have had the operation by now. So it wouldn’t affect the start of my new job, which I remain excited for… My Doctor, is shit.
I think I am probably in denial right now as I am managing to remain quite calm. I’ll do what I do and research the hell out of the condition and the treatment required to make it right, and then all my plans will come crashing down on top of me. Till then, consider yourself caught up. Thanks for reading.