Thursdays are often a crazy day for me. I work from 7 – 3:30, then I pick up the kids and we rush around doing errands for 35 minutes, then it’s off to swim lessons and a quick dinner before I pass the kids off to the Hubs so I can rush back to school and work at Bingo for 2.5 hours before finally crashing around 10:30. This particular Thursday was shaping up like all the rest, but the sun was shining and the kids went to school without a fuss so I figured it was going to be a good day. I was going to attack my to-do list, manage my time and have a good afternoon with the kids. That was the plan at least.
Until I got laid off.
When my boss’s boss pinged me to see if I had time to chat, I wasn’t surprised. He and I had been playing tag for weeks trying to connect on a project and I figured he was grabbing 15 minutes with me to finally nail it down. What I wasn’t expecting was for him to tell me that, due to budget constraints, I was to consider our conversation my 30 days notice as they were doing away with my department altogether.
*POOF* Laid off.
I have been with my current employer for 13 years and I’ve genuinely enjoyed all of them. I wasn’t saving the world, but I was helping customers and, most importantly, I worked with an incredible group of people that I’m proud to call my friends. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve dreaded going to work and I generally find most of what I do to be interesting. I know it sound naive given the economy, but I honestly thought I could retire from this company. Unfortunately, due to cost savings considerations, they felt differently.
I won’t lie, the first couple days after I got the news, I was reeling. I cried at the drop of a hat, I was angry and I was ashamed. But, with the help of the Hubs, family and amazing friends, I got past being ashamed. I have nothing to be ashamed about- life happens and companies have to make hard decisions. I am wrestling with guilt- guilt about how my family’s life is going to change if I don’t find a job quickly. Guilt over the things they’ll have to give up because unemployment, while very helpful, isn’t a replacement for my salary. I still cry occasionally and part of me is still angry- but I’m moving past that.
Now I’m starting to get excited and hopeful. There is a big, glorious world out there and while I’m very much a creature of habit, being shaken out of my rut is going to force me to see more of it! Maybe I’ll get lucky and find a new job right away and my family won’t have to deal with any major bumps in our road. Or maybe I’ll get lucky and I won’t find a job right away and I’ll have some time to volunteer at the kid’s school and get creative with my cooking. I honestly don’t know which way things are going to go, so I’m trying to swallow my terror and have faith that somehow, we’ll be just fine.