This is the first day that I don’t have a job to go to. I knew that this day was coming for a month now, but it still doesn’t feel real. It kind of feels like a Monday holiday, and then I will go in tomorrow and have extra work on my desk. The Monday stack of mail is always big, and the day after a Monday holiday is even bigger, like punishment for having a day off. I actually looked forward to plunging into the pile, seeing how fast I could figure out everything in the pile, and get it taken care of.
I found myself lying in bed, and worrying about the things that I hadn’t gotten to as the clock ticked down on my last days. I left notes, I told several people where things are kept, I tried to give enough people breadcrumbs on how to get the important things done. But, I was fired. Why do I still care? The remnants of my job pride are still there, still thinking of how to get all of the things done, and wondering who in the office is going to be able to take on all I did? No one is irreplaceable, and I know that another person will soon sit at “my” desk, and do “my” work, but the feeling that it’s MINE is still there.
I gradually cleared out the various things that had accumulated over the two and a half years that I worked there. Took my certifications off of the wall, took the paperweights and geegaws from my professional association, brought home the k-cups and the cat mug given to me by a co-worker two jobs ago. Almost all of the me is gone from the place. Unfortunately, the place isn’t gone from me yet.
I texted a work friend and told her that since I was running late, I wasn’t coming in at all, lol, but I hope that it didn’t come off as self-pitying. I’m not really in self-pity mode, just kind of trying to wrap my mind around it still. This is the first time I haven’t had a job, ever. Even when I was in school, I worked part-time and during the school breaks. I am going to tackle the unemployment application online today, and then work my way from there. I have plenty of things to do around the house, so keeping occupied is not the issue. I just need to figure out who I am going to be for most of the day from here on out until retirement.
It’s funny, I used to think that I would eventually drop dead at my desk at my old job, the one that I worked at for 28 years. I was really nested there. But the atmosphere turned sour there, and I left to find something else. Only to find out that I wasn’t “the right fit” at the next place, and that I wasn’t meeting expectations at the latest place. I have to take a hard look at myself and figure out what I am doing that has made me a bad employee. It’s a little difficult to go looking for work, appearing upbeat and confident, after having been kicked in the nuts two times in a row. Three, if you count the long term job, where at least I felt the tide turning and got out first. I still think that I am a good worker and have valuable things to offer, but I am pretty gun shy now, to be honest.
The idea of sitting across from someone at a desk and talking myself up is excruciating at the moment. And I haven’t interviewed for a job outside of my industry in decades. I’m nervous about the stupid things I hear about, tricks that interviewers pull, or questions like, “What kind of tree would you be, and why?” I’m not great at playing games, I like to speak straightforwardly, and I’m afraid that the nuanced interviewer will go right over my head.
Well, I have a lot of youtube videos and interviewing websites to read in the meantime, and I’m going to try not to freak out, because after all, it’s only day one.