Thursday, September 6, 2007

Dodging the bullet

So, there is finally an outcome to my previous post about potentially being jobless. Thankfully for me, I have been transferred to another business unit at my company. A business unit that remains profitable and viable "at least for another 18 months", which is a good thing. So now I can carry on with the handful of pressing personal issues in the next 8 weeks without worrying about dealing with a new employer too. That whole newness thing is exhausting anyway and I just don't have the mind or the will to deal with it now.

So things are good, right?

In the words of Moby, "why does my heart feel so bad?" Honestly, I've never been through anything so emotionally draining. I've been through two mergers and layoffs before, so I should know how it goes. But I guess being a "survivor" is different for me. Now I see the faces on the stories that are being written without a paycheck to support them. It seemed that here, more than anywhere, everyone has a story: an older woman with cancer, a younger woman with a 6 year old son with cancer, a woman without a college degree who was a week away from 30 years here, several older people thisclose to retiring but not eligible for Medicare or full Social Security yet and certainly not an attractive prospective hire.

One of them, a 25 year veteran of the company, asked me "how do you feel now that you know" (that you're staying)? I replied that I felt guilty for being kept on when so many were going. And she replied "And so you should".

Really? You think so? My guilt was mainly self-inflicted, but to get a glimpse of how she might have felt about me was eye-opening, shocking and validation of how I already felt. I just can't explain why I feel like this.

So I am one of about 20 left here and I am anxiously looking forward to starting my new work. And I know today is a new day and it's time to look forward and not backward, etc. etc. I just wish it was easier being one of the lucky ones.

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

wow, seriously bitchy comment by the veteran. It's one thing to feel bad internally - but to have someone tell you, you should? As if you truly had a choice, in the end? I'd tell her that her comment made me put it in perspective and maybe it wasn't so bad after all. dang.

It really does suck about the others. I hope they can find jobs soon.