Friday, May 20, 2016

Day Zero - "Your Position has been Eliminated"

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016 - Just another day.  Woke up begrudgingly after stretching the snooze limits of my morning alarm.  Poured my morning coffee as a get ready to begin my commute only minutes later.

I've always been an early riser, preferring to be early and beating the traffic.  Knowing I can be prone to stress I do everything I can to avoid it.  Being on the road by 6 a.m. my commute is as usual, uneventful.  What would normally be over an hour drive during rush-hour is barely a half-hour for me.

My day was typical.  I had my morning routine of maintenance items to address which kept me busy until there was a fire to put out.  As usual a few I.T. issues popped up that was immediately addressed.

After lunch this routine would repeat.  I'd take care of the afternoon routine tasks and waiting for the next fire.

In the course of my work I run into my (new) boss in the hallway.  "Got a minute?" he says, as he continues walking.  I follow and say "Sure, what's up?" and without any more dialogue we're entering the office of the CEO and the door closes behind me.

Comic relief is how I typically handle a potentially stressful situation and I said "Whoa... High school flashbacks being called into the principals office."  which met with a long pause and a cold monotone "We're eliminating your position, the company is moving into a different direction" followed by generic HR related information about unemployment insurance and healthcare.

Not expecting this my brain quickly tried to search for an appropriate response.  I could either blow up into a rage or just accept it.  I reasoned that there was no argument I could make to alter this decision.  So I extended my hands explaining that I understood that business is business.  Thanked them for the 21 years and that I had no ill will towards the company.

He then handed me his business card and told me that he would be willing to write exemplary letters of recommendations as needed.

I then awkwardly headed out the door asking if I was free to leave on my own or will I be escorted out...  I was allowed to roam freely.

The next four hours were filled with emotional goodbyes and holding back tears.  After all, it's been a long run.  Some of the people were the adult children of people who were barley adults themselves when I started 21-years ago.

Finally, after gathering my personal belongings and hauling them out to the car I pull out of the driveway.  Already feeling the anxiety of knowing that I will have to return in a few days to pick up my final pay.

I don't really have any recollection of the drive home.  But I was sure glad that I had a wonderful spouse waiting that I know would comfort and support me through this.

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