29 September 2009

Yesterday afternoon close to the end of the day I was taken to a conference room and informed my services were no longer required.

I gasped and said "Oh my God!", then I said "OK" and I was walked out of the building.

Four years (three years, 11 months and four day) wasted.

I hated my job, the work was OK but the business mission was not what I wanted out of life. The only reason I am at all upset is that how it was done was so wrong, but then again, the company existed due solely to the consumer spending spree that brought this country to financial ruin, so naturally the way I was fired was wrong.

It is a blessing whispered the little voice in the back of my head, truly, this is a blessing-you hated your job.

I got in my car and left the only place I had to be for the last four years without looking back and five miles down the road I was asking myself why I was so calm. Was I in shock, should I pull off and wait for the tidal wave of screams and tears that surely accompany being fired?

Why wasn't I shaking like a leaf, as I was Friday after the nut job co-worker went off on me?

Why hadn't I argued, pleaded, begged, anything at all to keep from losing my job??

Why wasn't I throwing up, screaming, crying, cursing the gods, anything besides calmly driving up the road out of Alpharetta towards The Tin Shack?

I pondered that the rest of the way home.

Although I usually don't make calls while driving, I called a friend once I cleared town and left him voice mail asking him to call me when he got the message; he did, and immediately offered me a job as a helper on his construction crew-HA, can you see me out there picking up nails? I may be doing that if I don't find something.

I got home, booted up the computer and commenced the job hunt. Two hours later, I've got a couple of interviews lined up for Wednesday, and I click over to the forums I frequent to look over the "Oh S*it, I've Been Laid-Off" threads. I mention in a couple of posts that I've been terminated (what an ugly word, especially when applied to one's self) and am the comforted recipient of several "It's going to work out" posts and private messages.

Finally, I turn off the computer after about three hours, and go to bed, where I lie there for only a few minutes still bemused by my seeming lack of real concern over my newly unemployed status.

It is the morning after, I am still calm. I do a personal inventory-can I feel anything?

OUCH, bloody well can, I pinched myself.

Do my legs, hands, mouth still work?

Yes, yes, and yes.

Hmmmm. OK, so I get on the Internet to check job sites, fire off a few more resumes.

I call the car company, yes, they'll stop the auto debit on the payment, get it mailed as soon as you can says the nice gentleman I speak with. He's obviously heard many of these calls lately, and is still able to be compassionate AND businesslike.

I call the bank to order a stop payment on the car-I'll have to go down there instead.

I make other calls all morning, arranging this, informing that. What a list of things must be attended when one becomes jobless!

And all the while I'm thinking, why am I so damn calm about this-I try talking myself into terrors. I say things to myself like-WTF is the matter with you, you live paycheck to paycheck, and your last one is not going to last long at all!

I remind myself that I am 53 years old, I won't be getting a reference from my now ex-boss; and I go on and on trying to whip myself into a foaming tear about my predicament.

But all I can think of is I never have to go to that place again, I never have to deal with any of those people again.

And interestingly, my mind is quite clear this morning. Much, much clearer than it has been for a long time. I've not felt like myself in a very long time and I am feeling more like me this morning than I have in years.

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