So, I was “let go” from the Charles Townsend Agency.
The first thing everyone asks is, “Did you see it coming?” Sadly, no. I mean I should have. Before my departure, the agency had one sexy angel, two sassy angels and four practical angels. And in the economic downturn it makes sense that if you are going to start cutting, you would start with where you have a surplus. I guess I just thought I was the best of the practical angels.
Despite daydreaming about this exact moment, I found myself wholly unprepared for the surprise conference with Bosley, Natalie, one of the other practical angels, and our HR director. I wasn’t brave or tough or even articulate. I was numb. I barely listened as the HR director walked me through the transition.
Reality didn’t really hit until I walked into my office with my brown box and saw that my laptop was missing.
The worst thing about being laid-off by far was having Natalie see me cry.
The best part of being laid-off is how nice everyone is to you. Of course, after a day or so, this becomes the most annoying thing about being laid-off. For instance, I was driving to breakfast with my mother when she remarked, “You are really getting quite good at driving.” I know she meant well, but telling me I am doing something that any teen can do is not going to make me forget that I failed at being an adult?
Which is what it feels like, at times. That I failed at being an adult. I had a plan. Do well in school, get into a good college, get a job, work my bottom off, get an office, get a promotion, fall in love, get married, buy a house, buy a dog, buy a shore house and then if things are still not working out, have a kid. But now, my whole plan was derailed. Not only have I failed at relationships, I have failed at work -- my excuse for why I fail at relationships.
The stupidest thing I have done since being laid-off -- and no, it wasn’t losing my transition paperwork which I did in either the haze of losing my job or the haze that followed the three large glasses of red wine I had on an empty stomach -- was smoking three cigarettes. Really, shit-for-brains? You just lost your job. Which means you also just lost your health insurance. So why not engage in an activity that will give you cancer. God, sometimes I am such a self-indulgent idiot.
The second thing everyone asks when they learn you no longer have a job, is “What are you going to do now?”
Which brings us the “this new reality doesn’t suck so much” moment of my unemployment. We were sitting on Lana’s stoop, Theresa, a former sexy angel at the agency, joined us as did one of Lana’s neighbors. Lana pointed out that it doesn’t suck to be unemployed when it is nice out. Theresa then added that my talent was going to waste at the agency and that now I would have time to finish my novel, work on my blog and just be a writer.
In all my fantasies about Bosley calling me into his office to conference with Charlie to let me know that I my services were no longer needed at the agency, my stiff-lipped self would shrug and let him know that I hadn’t been happy for awhile and that I will use this opportunity to write and maybe go back to school. Then I would stand up, shake his hand, shake my hair and walk out with my head held high.
While it didn’t actually go down like that, it doesn’t change the fact that I wasn’t happy, the spring and summer are coming, the government is going to pay my bills and for the first time since I was grounded in the third grade, I have all the time I need to just write.