I posted this tweet expressing my excitement last year on moving day bound for the Lowcountry.
Life is full of curveballs. One year ago on this very week, I was packing my bags for Charleston, so excited to begin my new job in a brand new city. I wrote to update you on my whereabouts; you may remember the post “All Things New in 2015; Some Kinda Good Greets the Lowcountry.” Today, I find myself packing yet again, this time for a city not-so-brand-new, and with feelings more somber than excited.
The shocking moment came on a Wednesday afternoon, during a weekly routine meeting with my boss. I had been with the company just eight months and two days. Things were fast-paced and extremely busy, but going well. “As you know, HCA is over budget,” she’d said. “I’m so sorry, but I’ve been asked to eliminate one position in our department, and unfortunately, that position is yours.” The words hit me head on like a MACK truck. Like a deer in headlights I sat stunned, rendered near speechless, my mind spinning a hundred and one miles per hour. I had come to the meeting prepared to brief her on the multiple projects our team had going, and within mere seconds, none of those projects mattered. A “Reduction in Force,” would explain my departure to future employers, and a severance package would lighten the blow. Suddenly and abruptly, the Charleston dream was over before it ever really began, and the world again was wide open. Just as I was climbing the corporate ladder and getting use to the lure of The Holy City, my job had quit me, leaving in its place deep disappointment, frustration and a lot of decisions to make. In the words of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”
With that said, we’re moving home to Georgia. This Friday, we’ll take Highway 17 to Interstate 95, then to Interstate 16 where the live oaks and palmettos give way to the scrub pines and flat lands of Claxton, Georgia. The Fruit Cake Capital of the World will be a temporary landing, a good, quiet place to collect our thoughts and plan our next adventure. There, this country girl can dust off her cowboy boots, which I never once wore during my whole year in Charleston.
Experiencing something so out of my control really has a way of putting things in perspective and helping me to count my blessings. I may be losing my luxury apartment with all its bells and whistles, but the things that matter remain: My husband, Kurt, is my #1 cheerleader and biggest fan. I have the greatest friends and family in the entire world. I have a valuable education, a solid foundation of work experience to build upon and in the words of my parents, “A good head on my shoulders.” My job search may take some time, and though I may not know what tomorrow holds, I am confident in who holds tomorrow. The silver lining through this entire experience is time and opportunity. Though 2016 is filled with many questions, I am fueled with hope and excitement for what lies ahead. I’ve already got a few leads up my sleeve and I can’t wait to share them with you!
On this Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, I will remember this quote, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Here’s to starting over again, because giving up is never an option.