New Beginnings After Job Loss

by Heligirl on June 16, 2011

in Beyond Mommyhood

When God closes a door, somewhere he opens a window. We’ve all heard that. New beginnings. But what the Sound of Music didn’t tell us is how long it takes to get the splinters from the slammed door out of your face.

Thus my journey after job loss.

In early December of last year I was told I was being laid off on Jan. 1, 2011. I absolutely loved my job. It was perfect – aviation related, PR, amazingly wonderful coworkers, perfect hours for my family, and incredibly flexible.

I went through the stages of grief big time and suffered many an identity crisis, dragging my family and friends along for the ride. We had a final Christmas party just before my last day, where everyone from our department, past and present, was invited. I cried during it so many times, not wanting to let go of this perfect family that I’d had for six wonderful years.

It was then my VP announced he was retiring in June. You see, our company was being restructured and my department was being pretty much absorbed by our sister company. They didn’t intend to retain any of us.

Many were laid off last year. But hearing my VP was retiring so young was devastating. To me, it meant he wasn’t offered a respectable position and chose to leave. An exceptional amount of institutional knowledge would walk out the door with him. I spent a lot of time in livid anger with the sister company.

As the months have passed and I’ve gained some clarity on the direction I want to take with my PR and social media business, the anger has subsided. I’m not feeling such a gaping hole in my heart nor so aimless after the loss of the best job I’d ever had. Perhaps I’d gotten all the splinters out finally.

This week, however, was the acid test. This week I attended the retirement party of my VP, which I’d volunteered to help put together. Deep down I had a little fear that it would rip open old wounds and send me aching all over again.

It didn’t.

In fact, I was surprised by how separate I felt from the pain.

Many of the people in attendance had moved on in their careers with new companies. Most of my very favorite people who were no longer with the company came back to honor our friend. It was like an amazing high school reunion (for someone who loved high school) as opposed to a wake (which is what the Christmas party felt like).

I took lots of photos, chatted with lots of old friends, reveled in the stories of how others are doing these days and gave and received a ton of hugs and love. Our old company was still hurting from the blow and those still employed there seemed to be the ones hurting the most, though they were finding ways to make the new structure work. They were still mourning the loss of what had been so great.

Those of us who had left smiled more, seemed to be more grounded and gave the most support. I felt at peace.

And then I walked out of the room.

As the door of the lodge where we hosted the party clicked shut behind me, I felt a ripple of release pass through me. I had officially laid down the pain and moved on. I will always love my old company. I will always love my former coworkers. I will stay in touch with many of them for the rest of my life.

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end. That wonderful beginning that brought all my deepest dreams into my life is now at an end. As I walked away, I breathed, “I’m ready now, for what’s next.”

The next day I officially signed my first big client with my new PR and social media company.

{ 1 comment }

Twitter: solarchief
June 16, 2011 at 12:27 pm

It’s amazing how that works; isn’t it! Goodbyes are so hard when they’re with a group of people that just worked right together. Hope that you will find the same in this part of your life. (Yup. Our lives are built up of parts. I’ve enjoyed them all.) Good to hear that you’re feeling better about it. Come visit when you can.
SharleneT recently posted: Delicious Solar Peppers and Kielbasa at Midtown Market

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