Two Hundred Two Days in Exile

Today, almost 20 years to the day that I had started for my previous company, I begin a new adventure with a new organization and the continuation of a career that was put on hold two hundred two days ago.

My life returns to normal…or does it?

Actually, it’s anything but normal. The innocence is gone. I return to the workforce with the realization that no job is guaranteed and certainly no future for that matter. It obviously never was but when you are with the same company for two decades, one that has become a second home and family for you, it’s easy to forget that it could all blow up in an instant. You never really think about losing your job when year after year after year you are told how valuable you are to the organization. Then just like that, it’s over. You were valuable, but not anymore. Now you have become expendable. Worthless. Too Expensive. A Relic.

But, the time has come to try and drop any animosity about the past and look to the future, to new challenges, new horizons. I have an opportunity to pickup my career almost right where I left it. I’ll admit there is a bit of nervous excitement about starting a new position for a new organization after all this time but I am confident in my abilities and know I will bring value to this new role. I remain upbeat and confident.

I will take on this new role with a whole new set of eyes though. I will no longer take my employment for granted. I will seize every opportunity to pick up a new skill, embrace every training opportunity that comes my way. I will do my best to really start putting money towards a rainy day fund to make sure me and my family are better prepared in the future for unexpected emergencies.

I can look at the positives from these past two hundred two days off. I was able to spend a great deal more time with my three daughters. Precious time that I would not have gotten otherwise. I started spending more time reading and discovered so many amazing writers on Medium that I have now become acquainted with and in some cases developed real friendships. I have started my own writing journey, one that began with simple journal writing to now posting on own articles on Medium and sharing my thoughts with the world. I am grateful for these things that never would have occurred had I not found myself with extra time on my hands.

But…..I can also see the negatives

The loss of my job hit me much harder then I thought. I became lost, depressed, other issues with my marriage amplified by these heightened feelings. I started letting my mind wander into dark, hopeless places where it was hard to find escape. I found myself longing for the companionship that was lost when my job slipped away. I sought out new friendships in the only place I had access to, social media.

I can now reflect on everything, the good, the bad and the ugly and see that this was just another step in my journey throughout life. This roller coaster we all find ourselves on can be scary at times, and you find yourself holding on for dear life just trying to survive the ride, but hold on you must.

The ride does smooth out, it does get better.

I am back on that smooth track right now but I know there are more hills, more loops, more high speed turns and steep drops ahead.

I am glad after everything I am still looking forward to staying on the ride.

Previously published on medium


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