Thursday, January 22, 2009

The End of Eden

I’d consider the last week or so somewhat of a holding pattern. I’d been busying myself with everything wedding-related for quite a while now, but due to the (un)employment situation I’ve been forced to put those things on hold, if for no other reason than to preserve some sense of emotional control.

The truth is that it would be a ridiculously stupid move to continue with the plan of spending five figures on a single day with the economy in such peril and the chance of me finding a job that paid as well as my last slim to say the least. The other side of that vicious coin is that at this point my wedding day is like a movie I’ve seen a million previews for and can’t wait for opening day of. I see the details in my head: the flowers, the decorations, the ridiculously expensive but highly coveted candy buffet at the reception. I can almost hear the Swarovski toasting flutes clinking together and I’m starving for this wedding.

So, the solution is one that I’m not completely excited about but have essentially come to peace with: I have to interview for my previous job back. While I am grateful that my old boss (same corporation, but individual company rather than corporate as I am now) immediately broached this when she heard of the imminent demise of my job, (and has even agreed to make it a lateral move salary-wise) I am still not warm and fuzzy about the proposition of having my old job again. To be fair I think that 99.9% of this apprehension exists solely due to a past supervisor who is no longer with the company, and everyone I have spoken to has assured me that it is much different there and that my return would be celebrated, but there is still a part of me that feels very defeated and angry. I won’t elaborate on the work situation and persons involved in the dissolution of my job as this is a public blog and all I need is the wrong person to stumble upon it, but I will say that corporate politics are not for the faint of heart.

So, heads – I get the job, I pack up my office here and transfer to a desk a mile down the road, and our wedding is on as planned. Tails – one of the other ten million people interviewing for jobs right now takes the position, I pack up my office sometime soon (I’ve been given no final date), and our wedding takes place in a bowling alley in Glendale.

Cross your fingers for me – I hear the coin toss is taking place sometime next week.

Friday, January 16, 2009

There I was, minding my own business...

Life is funny. One day you're stressing about pomanders and monograms and cake tier flavors and the next you get hit by a bus on its way to the unemployment office.

Unfortunately, this morning I was invited to join the ranks of the other 7.5% of our dear countrymen who earned the privilege of being "let go" from their beloved employers. "Let go" in itself is quite the awkward phrase as it infers that you beseechingly begged permission to be separated from your paycheck and they, being ever so willing to grant your every wish, allowed you to do so.

Of course, the timing could be much better as I'm just about an inch away from a complete nervous breakdown as far as wedding planning and expenditures go, but I'm doing my best to hang in there at least until the boy gets back from his ill-timed work trip to Texas tomorrow morning. Tomorrow I can stress and cry and blubber "why me?" into my pillow. Tonight, I'm resilient.

My darling old friend Curly was so cute to say in a comment on this blog that I should be a writer, but I'm disappointed to find no listing for "random story-telling cynical blog author". Eh. I doubt it would have a corporate credit card anyway.

In any case, I just thought I would practice some "Secret"-type theory and put it out there into the universe that I would like to find a job that I can do from home and that involves baking cakes, sewing, cooking dinner for the boy, and giving appropriate attention to studying the "Lost" island and discovering all its secrets.

What's that? Oh, it's my mom calling. She says that the job does exist, but it's called a homemaker and it pays...well...nothing. Square one, I'm back.

To the Great Recession: I know I've been skeptical of your existence in the recent past but you've converted me into a believer. You can now rest assured that your goal of creating mass havoc on the working class has been accomplished. Please feel free to go bother Dubai at this point and leave America alone.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy New Year!

Saying goodbye to 2008 was simultaneously a thrilling event as well as a melancholy one. The year that gifted us with three surgeries, one chronic disease diagnosis, and a heartbreaking family funeral also came bundled with one beach vacation, two job promotions/transfers, and one ‘official’ proposal of my dreams.

But our own little world has endured nothing when compared to the trials and tribulations of the global environment: economic crisis’, health epidemics, malevolent acts of terrorism, poverty and human tragedy, coupled with bias-defying elections, random acts of kindness in the wake of natural disasters, miracles, and the constant presence of God/fate/karma/whichever higher power you may believe in.

As I think back over the past 366 days (lest you forget it was a leap year) I notice that although I can distinctly remember days that seemed they would never end – no matter how hard I begged for them to – now, looking back, they all seem to have raced by. Was it not just yesterday that we were saying goodbye to 2007? I can close my eyes and smell the hot cocoa from Zoolights in January, and the iodine in the operating room in May, and the Origins’ sunscreen mixed with ocean air and barbecue smoke from the beach in August. I can remember trying to catch my breath from laughing so hard playing Monopoly on the bedroom floor and from sobbing on the verge of hyperventilation after my Nana died. Each memory brings with it the feeling of: I will never be this happy/sad/scared/tired/heartbroken/relaxed again – knowing full well that those emotions will return again the moment I least expect them.

Welcoming 2009 is an emotional event in its own right. The year we will get married and (God willing) conceive our first child. The year Corey will turn 30. The year I will get so close to 3-0 that saying I’m in my mid-twenties will become less of a stretch and more of an outright lie.

I have no preconceived notions that 2009 will bring nothing but sunshine and lollipops and rainbows. I’m sure I will find myself sobbing in Corey’s arms uncontrollably, frustrated beyond belief at one or more doctors, and clutching the armrests of at least one jet thinking to myself that there is certainly a lot of turbulence on this flight. I will be petrified to bring a child into this screwed up world and I will be horrified by things I see on the news. I may even burn something in my ever-moody oven.

But there are also things that I will bring with me from 2008 to ease the transition:

1. A tetanus vaccination that will last until 2018 (a late night Christmas
present to myself)
2. Our wedding account which due to our copious saving attempts (and my
generous parents) is nearly complete.
3. An employer that has thus far offered me nothing but stability and room to
4. The world’s best mattress (at least compared to our old one).
5. The knowledge that using a coupon will neither kill nor deface me with a
permanent scarlet C (for cheap).
6. Enough of an emergency fund to feed/clothe/pay our bills for a while, or
just to run off to Fiji.
7. The daily reminder that no matter what else is going on, I was lucky enough to find the one person that makes it all worthwhile.

So although we are certain that 2009 won’t be any closer to perfection than its predecessor was, we welcomed the new year with open arms last Wednesday night and hopes that it will at least improve on the good that is already here. And just to be sure that 2008 went out on a sweet note, we dined at Coup des Tartes (which is our tradition, and also the site of our wedding reception) and enjoyed a four course meal of roasted sweet corn soup, brie brulee, pomegranate encrusted filet, roasted winter vegetable tagliatele, and various other wonders. It was the perfect way to usher in 2009 and say goodbye to 2008.

We hope you all had a sweet start to your new year too.