I still love you... I'm just not IN LOVE with you anymore.
We had some great memories but it's time to move on.
We just started growing apart.
We're not who we were seven years ago.
It's time for something new.
It's not you, it's me...
I've been sitting here for the last fifteen minutes with writer's block, unable to put any of my emotions on paper. I never thought this moment would be so difficult, or that I might be choked up with the inability to convey my farewells to people I've known and worked with over the past seven years. Alas, it has happened. I am without words. (Shocking.. right?!)
The initial "I'm not coming back" discussion went smoothly, the receipt of "separation procedures" was a quick read, the phone transferring was simple (I'll need to make another trip to the Verizon store later today to finalize it), even the discussion with the benefits representative with detailed instructions for a lay woman like myself to rollover my 401k was not too bad. Apparently, the good-bye e-mail is terribly difficult.
The Firm is the only reality of work and the real world that I have known since graduation. It's where I made my first grown-up friends. It's where I had my first big office all-hands meeting. It's where I got my first pay check. It's where I messed up and had to take ownership for my own mistakes. It's where I learned what the real world was all about. It's where I had my first real relationship break-up. It's where I had my first 401k. It's where I first ate lunch and dinner with my co-workers. It's where I first worked 15+ hour days. It's where I was first truly challenged. It's where I really first grew out of my comfort zone. It's where I first learned how to have a real conversation with grown-ups about mature topics (their kids, sports, politics, religion, and Hollywood gossip). It's where I first learned how to master the freeway and long drives in Southern California. It's where I had my first business trip. It's why I traveled for the first time to Dallas, New Jersey, Chicago, and Arizona. It's where I got my first business card. It's where I first taught a training class. It's where I first had an annual review. It's where I first cried at work. It's where I first got promoted. It's where I first learned about the Gospel. It's why I became intrigued by the Gospel. It's where I first had an excuse to live on my own in Corporate Housing for a special project. It's where I had my first name change. It's where I had my first maternity leave. And it's where I have been for most of my 20's.
The Firm has been my friend. The Firm has been my enemy. It has destroyed me.. it has celebrated with me.. it has praised me.. it has ripped me down. But slowly, over the course of seven meaningful years, it has defined me into who I am today. The experiences I have had there are not ones I would ever trade, not even for more kids at a younger age (though I do think it would have been nice). The knowledge that they have sent me off with will forever make me smarter, stronger, faster, and more capable and confident of what the world may throw at me.
I am grateful for the Firm. For what it taught me. For how it pushed me to be better. For the friends I have made there. For the memories I will hold onto forever. For the complimentary five star dining experiences. For the limos that shuttled me around at training. For the taking-up-space-in-my-closet-and-desk-too-much-overkill-but-I-love-it-anyway-branded-paraphernalia. For the line on my resume it will always reside on. For being part of my life for seven years. Thank you Firm.
I have chosen to leave the Firm so I can be at home with my son and future kids. I am also a temporary executive secretary for my husband while he is interviewing for residency by scheduling his interviews and organizing a workbook of key calendar dates and contacts. I maintain our budget, clean the house, cook the food, do the laundry and play with Jordan.
Along the way, a tender mercy from Heavenly Father came in the form of a job opportunity to work from home for 16 hours a week as an operations and finance director for a small executive search company. The relationship which led to this opportunity came while I was in client service, something I dreaded and hated last August and am now understanding the bigger picture is something we don't always comprehend until later. I met a fellow CMC alum who told me more about the Company and then introduced me to the President who is on the Ronald McDonald Charity Board. Turns out my college background and time as a camp counselor for the Ronald McDonald Camp for Good Times came in handy as I connected with both future co-workers about these shared interests. Isn't it funny how your prior choices can lead you to future opportunities?
It's true what they say.. when one door closes, another opens.
I'm closing the door to the Firm and saying good-bye.
But I'm also opening the door and saying hello.