The weird thing about being told that I’m getting laid off, but then having 30 days left to work is that nothing’s changed. Except everything has. My routine is still the same- I get up, I work out, I get my kids ready for school, I work for 8+ hours, tend to the kids/homework/dinner/bedtime, have a few hours to kill (now spent searching for a new job) and go to bed. There is no huge yawning expanse of free time yet- if anything, the to-do list is a thousand times longer than it was a month ago as I update my resume, post it, search for jobs, reach out to contacts, finish up all the documentation to hand off to the people taking over bits and pieces of my job, make sure our finances are in order, figure out where we can cut out expenses and on and on and on… all with the low level vibration in my head, this sense of never-ending urgency pounding in my chest.
It feels odd to talk about my job loss. But it’s all I think about. Not so much the loss of the job I have (had?), although there is some mourning there. More in terms of what it means for the future, how it will affect us all and when I’ll find another job. It’s scary because I’ve worked since I was 15- I’ve never not had a job in the past 20 years. I worked at a golf course, at Victoria’s Secret, at a warehouse on my college campus, at IBM and this horrible start up right out of college. Then I got my current (former?) job when I was 22 and here I still am (was?). I did a lot of fun, fun projects at this job and I met some of the most incredible, inspiring, giving people. Even when I didn’t much enjoy what I did, I still enjoyed going to work because of my coworkers. Them, I’ll miss.
But I don’t feel like I’m losing my identity (one of the things the online brochure said I may feel after my lay off) because I’m so much more than my job. My job allowed me to live the life I wanted to live- one with a stable home and vacations and a wonderful, loving school for my kids. We don’t live extravagantly, but we live(d) well. I’ll miss that sense of security.
But I feel dumb talking about this like it’s some big tragedy. I’m not battling a disease, no one’s safety is at stake, my kids are still happy. my husband is supportive and we’re not about to lose our home or car or even cable TV over this. But some days it’s all I can talk about. It bleeds into every conversation whether it’s due to concerned friends asking how I’m doing or me having to explain to the kids why going to the indoor waterpark at $35/person on our day off isn’t in the budget anymore. It’s this weird head space of wanting to think/pretend everything’s normal while knowing it’s not and that you’re fooling yourself because you can’t even think about going out to dinner without have an internal panic attack thinking about the cost. It’s an odd, odd way to live.
I have 3 interviews over the next 3 days. I’ll take any good wishes & prayers I can get!