This morning I awoke at 5:16 a.m. As I type this, it is now 7:02 a.m., an hour at which I try never to willingly be awake, unless it is pre-slumber.
I have to confess that I may have buried the lead in my post a few weeks ago — I alluded to some earth-shattering news I had received just before I was to go out of town for the weekend. Well, I was laid off from a job I’d held for two days shy of 7 months. In truth it was a relief, since it was just not the right fit … an absolute square peg in round hole. But, it’s the first time I have ever left a job not of my own volition: clean out your desk, hand in your badge, leave when you’re done, the whole bit.
It’s been a rough past four years in our workforce, so I know my story isn’t unique or special. I also understand that it had nothing to do with me personally or my performance — the cuts are wide and deep for everyone. But the immediacy of such a turn of events … arriving at work expecting to spend your day/week/month/year a certain way … to have that yanked from you is quite jarring. On the plus side, it was clearly a “meant to be” for me — I wasn’t happy spending 40 hours of my week or life that way, and my family obviously needed me over the ensuing weeks. Now that drama has cleared, and I’m staring at an unknown, yet wide open, future. What in the world do I want to be when I grow up?
(If you figure it out, let me know?)
I’ve spent the past, oh, 7 years in discontent at work, in three separate jobs and companies, even across different cities. That just can’t be all there is. Surely you can earn a paycheck in a place that lets you be a good person, make a decent living, spend time with the people you love and sleep well at night. I’ll even accept a little stress — enough to help productivity.
Though all of that happened a month ago, I’ve only been back at home for a few days, and I’m trying to take my time on the job front, at least until I can’t anymore. I spend my days on long walks with Oliver, fixing up those things around the house that I’ve meant to address for three years, seeing friends, cooking, volunteering, clearing out the DVR and hoarding my loose change. Life is pretty full, even without a place to go all day. The downside, of course, is all the sleep. I’m not a person who sleeps easily, and without a reason to wake in the morning I would keep the hours of a vampire. But these days I’m logging a good 10 hours a night. Until my body just can’t take it anymore.
So here I find myself, fully rested, up and dressed, sipping coffee, typing words that are decently coherent, all at the crack of dawn. I will probably accomplish everything I planned today by 10 a.m.
It’s one of life’s little instructions that you should watch a sunrise once a year. Check.