I knew I was in trouble this morning when our admin walked into my office and said “Do you have a minute? [Our boss] wants to talk to me and you.” That never happens. He’s talked to me before, and he’s talked to her….but there’s never any reason for both of us to talk to him together, so I was 90% sure I knew what was about to happen. And when I walked into his office to spot a lonely manila envelope on his table, I knew without a doubt.
To make a long story short, I was laid off this morning. It wasn’t all that surprising. I feel like my work product had been deteriorating for a while now (self-fulfilling prophecy, perhaps?), and my project was coming to a close. In fact, just last night I had finished gathering the final documentation I needed, and only had to finish up tab dividers and whatnot. I’m proud of myself…I didn’t cry while I was sitting in there with them. (That had been my biggest fear.) My boss graciously offered to help with my search for a new job by offering to put me in contact with recruiters and serving as a personal reference. That seemed nice of him.
So I went back, cleaned my things out, and briefed our admin as to the state of all the stuff I was finishing up. Then I closed up my laptop, turned it in….and then came the hard part: saying goodbye. I hadn’t shed a tear or let my voice get shaky until I said goodbye to the people I had worked with. Luckily, everyone comes and goes, and this morning the office was fairly empty, so there were just two to say goodbye to. When I went to say goodbye to my former Project Manager (and my first PM as a full-time employee), thats when I almost lost it. I was able to leave with my dignity in tact though, and off I went….
The drive back home was quite a sight. I cried, of course (thank goodness I had my sunglasses in the car to cover up that wreck), but two main things kept running through my head:
1) How did I get to this point? At what point did I go from recent graduate, eager to succeed to “let’s just make it through the day”. Did I stop enjoying my job because I was starting to realize this isn’t what I want? Or did I lose the “will to fight” when I realized I wasn’t very good at it? Could I have been better? I don’t know….
2) What the heck am I going to do now? My industry has slowed practically to a standstill, there are hundreds (if not more) people in the area with more experience at my job (and that are better at it, I’m sure) looking to get back in the field, and I don’t even know if I want to go back! There are so many possibilities it’s really making my head hurt….
Either way, I know one thing for sure: I am SO GLAD I have savings. Now, if I could just figure out my Plan B….