What next?

It’s strange how life pans out. It’s never quite the way you plan it – and the universe always takes you on the course it thinks best, rather than the one you expected.

When I started writing my blog back in February I was making a bold, but probably at the time ill informed decision to leave work without anything to go to.

I’d decided that the only way to effect transformative personal change was to rip up the rule book, and do everything at once. I wanted to continue to be alcohol free, loose weight, get fit, start writing again, learn new skills and experience new things. I was going to take a year off and fit all of that into it.

Honestly though on reflection a year isn’t really all that much when it comes to such sweeping and wholesale shifts in personality and behaviour.

My manager at the time convinced me that I needed to stay, deal with the death of my mother and get some support with my emotional state and heavy drinking while I still had a job. It’s something I in retrospect I am very grateful for – as it enabled me in many ways to metaphorically have my cake and eat it.

My employer generously gave me time and space to start my recovery journey and I appreciated it – a lot.

However – there was another dimension to this generous boon. The reasons I wanted to leave had not disappeared, and the continued cost cutting and reductions never abated. Recently the effect this has on the people around me has affected my mood and sleep a lot.

As much as I sometimes want to be able to distance myself from the feelings of others, its something I’ve never been able to do. The people I work with are like my family and what gets them down affects me – and it continually plays on my mind.

I handed my notice in because I didn’t want to be there at the end and say goodbye both to a job I’ve loved (for the most part) and people that I consider to be close personal friends.

One colleague at work said to me when I first handed my notice in ‘I can’t believe you’ve done it – I thought we’d be turning the lights off together.’

He put a lump in my throat at that moment whether he knew it or not, because he vocalised how I felt not only about him but about all of the people on mine and other teams.

Ironically however it looks like our fingers will both be on that light switch after all.

Today my company announced 85 redundancies amongst my business unit and others in the UK, and judging by the dates in the mail its highly likely that by the end of July that sixteen years of employment will end and a new chapter will begin. I have no official letter yet but from everything I’ve heard today I believe this is a formality and I’ll be gone along with everyone else.

I have a massive mixture of feelings at the moment – two of which involve a large table of food and an almost erotic fantasy about a bottle of wine.

I’m not going to act on either of them, but they do underscore my underlying emotional state – and that’s upset and sad.

When I found out the news today I was sitting at home. Ironically enough I’d taken time off today in an effort to get away from the negative cloud of doom surrounding the subject in the office and do something positive and enjoyable instead.

It seems that wasn’t meant to be – and now I just feel a sense of loss.

I’m sure over time this will turn into a sense of possibility – but strangely I feel disempowered by the decision to leave being made by someone else, even if not so long ago it was mine to make and I also (initially at least) decided to step away.

On the plus side the uncertainty about the future I’ve alluded to in previous blogs is now coming to an end. I know with a high degree of certainty that it’s not going to involve my current employer, and I know that I have to start making some concrete plans about what I want to do.

At the very least 2016 is proving to be an eventful year, and may yet become one of the more productive and interesting ones of my life.

Question is – whether to get a dog, or another job. Or both. Or do something else entirely.

I have absolutely no idea internet… I really don’t.


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