Well – Another Monday and still no magical offers of employment. The job boards this morning are empty of roles that I could perform. I feel like I’ve tapped out the good will of friends and colleagues who were so anxious to help when I was initially let go from my company of 28 years. Seven months later, I am still emotional. Hurt. Angry. Bereft. Fearful. Why me? Why, at this point in my life?
A successful business woman for all those years. Someone whom people could count on to help out, get the job done, come through in a pinch. A woman with stature, power, wisdom. Hopefully, grace.
Who woulda thunk it?
I think back to all the times I stepped out on a limb to do the right thing. Did I step too far?
I think about joking with my team about my retirement count-down. (Now that was probably very stupid!)
We all grouse about our bosses, but did some un-complementary comment, spoken in a confidential conversation, wend its way back to him/her?
In all the rounds and rounds of layoffs that I participated in and survived over the last 15 years, I tried to be kind. To offer help to colleagues who needed a letter of recommendation or an introduction to a hiring manager. I fought for funding to keep contract staff productive and on-board. (Probably long after I should have.)
Ego? Did I get too cocky, comfortable, was I not appropriately respectful to some superior? Did I push too hard for a program, employee – choose the wrong hill to die on? Because my professional life does, indeed, seem to be dead this beautiful September morning.
Seven months. I still rack my brain every morning to find the clue as to WHY?
Pema Chodron, the first American woman to be ordained in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, makes an observation about the healing nature of pausing in one’s flight though life. “In the next moment, in the next hour, we could choose to stop, to slow down, to be still for a few seconds. We could experiment with interrupting the usual chain reaction, and not spin off in the usual ways. We don’t need to blame someone else and we don’t need to blame ourselves.”
I am reaching for my car keys. Time to pause to watch the harbor seals, and let go of today’s blame game …
There’s always tomorrow.