Things around the ol' job site were getting weird. Sketchy. Suspect. You know what I mean, there are all these hush-hush meetings. Work loads start getting juggled around. All the Big-Wigs hang around in storm-cloud cluster together, like if they seperate and are left alone the wolves (curious employees) might attack. Safety in numbers, I guess. And you know it's coming....a lay-off.
Then they switch into that phase where they want you to think everything is okay. And when you say "Hello" they are overwhelmingly nice and it all just seems very odd. You start getting a lot of compliments. You start analyzing those compliments. Are they doing this so that I am confident I am not getting laid off? Or are they nervous around me cause they think that I know that they know I know?
Then its the phase where they are over it, they have made their Big-Wig business decisions and there is not a damn thing you can do about it. So they aren't overly nice, they aren't nice, they aren't mean....they just kind of ignore you. And that makes you desperate for attention.
And you realize....oh my god...they are going to let me go. And You. Freak Out. This is where you go into that over-happy mode. Where you either 1. don't want anyone to think that YOU might be getting the ax or 2. If you are, you are not worried about it. Don't worry about me...I am so happy! Isn't that right Mr. Bluebird on my shoulder?!
Eventually, the poop has to hit the fan, so they say. And you know it's happening. The air in the office seems to get sucked out. Everything goes quiet and still. And it's that last minute evaluation of yourself where you make lists of all your pros and cons and you are trying desperately to convince yourself why you would get to keep your job. Just in case, though, you hide under your desk.
But if it is your time, it's your time and there is nowhere safe you can hide. So you walk down the stairs of doom, into that conference room, and you see the Big-Wigs and you know. Today is your last day at this job. Sniff.
You go in, and you sit there and you listen to all the words coming out of their mouths. You know, things that I personally never believe. Things like, "If we could keep you we would. We love you. We think you are awesome." Yeah, well if you REALLY thought I was so awesome you WOULD find a way to keep me and get rid of someone who was quasi-awesome, cause let's face it, you can't think ALL OF US are awesome.
You go to your desk, all slug-like, and pack up your things. And you have to try to keep as composed as possible while everyone stares at you like you are the worlds biggest train wreck. I mean, they didn't cut my arms off, they laid me off. Nothing to see here people, nothing to see.
But when you get in the car you lose it.
Oh god. What just happened to me?
I mean, this is a huge change in routine. Your mind can't wrap itself around that instantly. Your life has just been slapped in the face and spun around quicker than you can say, "Claimant Self Service Login" It's best to go home and lay on the couch until you figure things out.
And so you spend some time wondering what you did wrong, and comparing yourself to other employees and wondering why you got let go, and not them. And then you think about all the things you are going to miss, and the people you enjoyed. And all the things you really loved about that job. And you think about not having a pay check, and updating your resume, and ugh...interviewing.
But then one day you start thinking about not waking up to an alarm. And getting to go grocery shopping at 1:00pm on a Wednesday when no one is there. And how you never have to fill another fridge with Diet Coke again. And how you don't have to sit in anymore pointless staff meetings. And how you can lay out all day if you want, and garden when you want, and get those DIY projects going....and you know what. Things start to look better.
And so, weeks after losing a job that I really did like, I can honestly say that I am glad I did. I have been able to spend my summer stress-free with no complaints other than "Dang. I forgot to put another bottle of Sangria in the fridge!" I have been kicking maximum ass on the home improvement projects, stay tuned for more info on those by the way. I have been reconnecting with friends, traveling, walking my puppy every day (more exercise=less chewing on couch!) and I have started exercising every day.
When you have a job how many times a day do you find yourself saying, "Oh I would...but I just don't have the time..." Well what if you did? What if you had a life where you did have time? What would it be like?
I'll tell you....it would be awesome!