I carried that sealed manilla envelope back to the representative as I had been told to do by the doctor. He asked me to take a seat and then he quietly opened the envelope, pulled out the papers, and read them. He occasionally lifted his eyes and looked at me with a sad expression. When he was finished reading he took the papers and re-inserted them in the envelope and once again sealed it. All of his former friendliness disappeared. He handed me the envelope, and in a very business like voice said, "Take these to Mr. B-----. He needs to see them. And remember you came in through the back door. Normal procedure is to have the physical BEFORE you have the interview."
My heart fell to my stomach as I accepted the envelope. I felt as if I had just been give the 'kiss of death'. "Would you pease tell me what has been written about me?" I asked.
He answered, "No. That information is for 'Eyes Only'. Just take the envelope to Mr. B-----."
I did as he instructed and watched as Mr B----- opened the envelope and turned pale. Then I had to sit there and listen while he struggled to find reasons why the position that he had offered me was no longer available. The more he talked the more I could feel the heat rising to my face, the more embarrassed I became for him. Looking back I wonder why I felt such sympathy for him. He was lying to me and we both knew it. What he knew and I DIDN'T know was what had been written about me on those mysterious, sealed papers.
That night I cried myself to sleep. I was young, naive, divorced with a child to support, trying to finish my education and work at the same time, and I didn't have the vaguest idea that I had certain rights. I had never dealt with a large government funded company. I was a babe in the woods.
The next morning I woke up determined to fight for a job with that particular company........................come hell or high water! My parents had raised me with the mantra "Can't is not in YOUR vocabulary! You can do anything that you put your mind to, so go DO!" The tears the night before smacked of self pity and I abhor self pity in myself. I would get a damn job with that damn company no matter what it took.
Continued in next entry.