Thursday, November 19, 2009

When does the grass get greener?

I keep thinking that work is going to get better. We "merged" (in other words, we were bought) earlier this year, and much of this fall has been spent wrangling with new policies, new people, aligning our support with their expectations, and trying very hard not to smack anyone upside the head. (That last one may just be me.)

I had to let a friend go today as part of the ongoing staff reductions. In my job, this happens. It happens more than I'd like. But afterwards, I felt like a balloon with all the air let out of it-- limp, drab, exhausted. At a loss for words.

I guess I felt just a little heartbroken: that this is what it's come to at this funny, quirky, sometimes frustrating, always interesting little company I worked for, that's now part of a larger organization: it's only about the numbers.

I know that's business. I know that's how it is. And it's good that I remember it, if only to protect myself. But it still hurts.

I went into my (former) boss's office afterwards and just sat down. "I need a break," I told him. "We just talked to D, and I can't be in my office right now." And he took one look at me and brought up another, less wretched topic, and for five minutes I didn't think about it. It was nice. He's a really good guy, and we take care of each other, I think. I'm lucky in that.

Earlier in the week, I was told by the purchasing organization they love me, they really want me to stay, they think I'm critical to the success of the region, that they want to work with me to make sure I'm in a role I enjoy and find challenging... and they're giving me more than a 10% pay cut so I'm aligned with the rest of the organization.

It wasn't a surprise. But it was still demoralizing.

** **

My best friend's mother passed away unexpectedly last week, so one night this week I made the trek down to the funeral home to pay my respects. I've known Friend and her mom for over 25 years; I'm godmother to Friend's daughter. I probably knew almost as many people at the funeral home as the family did.

Family isn't just blood. Thank goodness.

I'm worried about Friend. She was holding up beautifully, but her relationship with her mother was never smooth, and had been especially rough recently. Losing someone when you have unresolved issues is not easy. Ever. And as wonderful as Friend's husband is (and he is), a woman's relationship with her mother is something only other women can really understand.

I'm going down to help clear out the house soon-- possibly this weekend, but more likely after Thanksgiving-- and I need to make sure I keep in extra close touch with her. When she needs to talk, I will be there.

** **

Tomorrow night, a (different) friend is practicing cooking for me, and I'm crashing at her place so we can watch the deleted scenes/outtakes of a particular movie that I shall not admit to here for fear of outing myself as a complete and total geek.

If I wasn't knocked up, there would be serious drinking. As it is, I'm just hoping I stay awake long enough to not be insulting. (It just hit 10 p.m. here and I'm amazed I'm still upright. Pathetic.)

Have good weekends, all.

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