Sometimes, it takes a really out of the blue moment to make you reevaluate your thinking.
Without going into too much detail (in respect of the persons involved) I have to say that yesterday was one of the worst days in my ‘professional’ career.
It started off a little…off…from the moment my alarm went off at 5 AM.
See, Wednesdays are my mid-range run day. This particular week, I was slated to run 8 miles. But as aforementioned…the alarm went off at 5 AM. I looked at it and just felt this incredible heavy feeling. No energy. I squinted at the alarm application on the iPhone and thought, “okay, let me switch it back to 5:30 AM, then I can swap my 4-miler.” It felt like I had just closed my eyes when the alarm blared again. 5:30 AM, already.
This might sound normal for others, but I am a morning person. This is NOT normal for me. I grabbed the iPhone and reset for 6:30 AM.
At the time, I figured that my 8 PM to 10 PM courses were just taking their toll on me, and reminded myself that as important as marathon training is, sleep is just as vital to the plan as miles are. I still felt weird, but by the time I made it to work and made a cup of coffee, I shook it off.
Lunchtime arrived and I performed my usual routine of setting the daytime mode on the phone, locking up important documents and securing my computer. I went down to the cafeteria where hubs and I meet and I had my quinoa salad that I had prepared earlier in the week. We watched the news on CNN, as always. I watched hubs chow down on his lunchtime staple: Turkey Pastrami and Swiss on Great Harvest Dakota bread, made daily by his lovely wife. We finished up our meal. We drove to Starbucks. I had a latte – wanted a cookie, too, but resisted. Same old.
Returned to the office…cue schedule malfunction.
Within three seconds of stepping into the office suite, I knew something was horribly wrong. Some of the brightest-eyed and pleasant people I knew in the office had their heads drawn down, their eyes slightly rising as I walked in. The same heaviness that had pulled me down that morning, sacrificing my precious morning run had returned. The words came out.
“They let me go.”
My trainer. My mentor. My colleague. My friend.
The next few moments were isolated – like underwater suspension. I felt so many emotions all at once…shock, disbelief, anger, sadness, betrayal. How could SHE be going? Why? How could this be happening?
But she, as the always eloquent and kind person that she is, showed only resilience, “this door is closing, but I have faith another will open.”
HOW. How could she be so…positive? No, maybe that wasn’t the right term…resigned? Accepting of her fate?
We shared a few moments and hugs were exchanged. She was already headed out the door, she wanted to tell me in person before security escorted her out. I felt a lull. A deafening silence. A driving dark emptiness.
The rest of the afternoon was a haze. I stared out the door. I cried. The chemicals from my mascara burned around my eyes as I tried to take deep breaths and flush out the bad feelings. At the encouragement of a colleague, I took a walk.
I felt the wave again.
Why. Why. Why. This made no sense. Guilt, anger, confusion.
I spent the rest of the afternoon talking with colleagues – all offering their words of experience. Moments with them helped, but I still couldn’t push the sadness away.
Work ended. Had dinner, did some baking, attended my online class, read Mockingjay til my eyes shut. Woke up…
4:47 AM – 8 miles. Felt hard. Felt alive.
It is a new day.
It doesn’t feel any easier, it’s still not fair, but isn’t that what life is?
We have to keep living.