*This one is for Mr. Wiberg, who inspired me to start writing again.
Two Mondays ago I was walking to work with my earplugs in and an upbeat song filling my eardrums. You can listen to it here if you’d like. https://youtu.be/9Qp0w1tNTbI It was a pretty morning and the parrots were flying from tree to tree above my head (I didn’t know there were parrots in San Francisco either). I was feeling good and unusually optimistic. I say ‘unusually’ because I’d grown quite weary of my job and hadn’t felt like my usual, jovial self in some time. In fact, I’d been pretty miserable for months and had fantasized more than a few times about looking for something more suitable. That idea was fresh in my mind that morning because my girlfriend and I had just watched a movie the night before called ‘Chef.’ http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2883512/ It wasn’t the best movie I’ve seen, but it was a cute, happy story that I found somewhat inspirational.
Once I entered the office building my mood dipped a little, but I was still feeling positive. I completed my 9 interviews for the day and then had a wild idea…”Perhaps I’ll put in my two week’s notice!?” This thought bounced around in my squirrelly mind for a good hour or so and then I remembered something my friend Camm had said a week earlier after seeing a photo of me at work…”mate, you look miserable,” he said, “You don’t belong in a tie!” That did it. I started franticly pecking away at the keyboard and began imaging how great (and odd) it was going to feel to hand that letter into my boss. I was grinning from ear to ear.
It was a bold move to be sure. I didn’t have anything else lined up, nor did I have any solid ideas about what I was going to do if I went through with this. In my estimation however, the good far outweighed the bad and once the draft was finished I sent a photo of it to Angie (the girlfriend) to share my exciting news. She called me soon after and thought it wasn’t a horrible plan, but suggested I sleep on it. That took a little starch out of my sails, but it was the wise move. No need to do anything rash, right?
The following day, I felt at peace about not quitting. I told myself I would just start being more aggressive in my job search. In the meanwhile, I was lucky to have a job at all, even if it was a stressful one. Around 1:30p.m., after completing my interviews and finishing yet another hurried lunch, I was escorted into the Director’s office by another manager, sat down and told I was being let go. Two sheets of paper were handed to me and I was instructed to sign both copies; one for me and one for the organization. There are a lot more details in the story that I’m leaving out because I’ve already had to regurgitate this tale a dozen times. I was shocked and angry, but in a very small way, relieved. A day or two went by and while I still wasn’t feeling wonderful about what had transpired, I began thinking about all the possibilities this unfortunate situation afforded me. The more friends and family I spoke to about it, the more I started to believe this was a good thing; maybe even a great thing. What followed next was not.
The Sunday after I lost my job, Angie and I met and had a heart to heart. She said she thought it best that we didn’t see one another. I knew she hadn’t been happy for a while, but I had hoped I wasn’t the sole reason for that. The timing couldn’t have been worse and there was a brief moment that I felt some bitterness, but that was soon replaced with a sense of understanding. I was hurt, I’m still hurt in fact, and that likely won’t change for some time, but I don’t blame her. We don’t choose when we decide to fall in or out of love with someone and it took a lot of courage to tell me her true feelings. I’d have been more upset if she’d pretended everything was ok. Life is too short to go through it unhappily and I truly hope she can find the spark she’s been missing.
In the meanwhile, I’ve got some thinking to do.