I like to think each week has a Theme – sort of like a headline that you can only see after you read the article.
Last week’s Theme was “Get a Second Opinion.” The Theme was identified after my sister sold her car and my uncle was medically misdiagnosed. In neither case was there malice or an intention to deceive. Things just progressed the way they do when humans are involved and, before you knew it, someone had a lemon and someone almost died. And no one, unfortunately, had thought to “Get A Second Opinion.”
This week’s Theme is “Timing.” It kicked off Sunday afternoon at a family lunch celebrating my nephew’s 18th birthday. My husband jokingly thanked Noah for being born and said, “I would not have met your aunt 18 years ago if she had not come home early from Europe for your baptism.”
I quickly corrected him with, “Actually, I came home early from Europe because I got drunk in a bar in Greece and lost my credit card and my passport.” (Timing.)
At just shy of 100 days, I am hesitant to give too much credit to my infant sobriety. How can things be profoundly better after just three months? And yet …. things are so much better than they were 98 days ago. Better marriage, better work, better parenting. Not perfect. Not even close. But, because I am not hungover or obsessing about when/how I am drinking, it is much easier to recognize the places in my life where things seem to be going well and areas where there is trouble. (When I was drinking, it was easy to feel overwhelmed and think everything was going poorly. This feeling made it difficult to ever fix anything and very easy to open another bottle of wine.)
One of the areas where there is undoubtedly room for improvement is my job. No need to go into all the details, but suffice it to say that I have a flexible schedule and make fairly good money. In return, I have (what feels to me like) a lot of responsibility and sometimes-challenging colleagues. The work itself is interesting, but not fulfilling. I don’t know if you’re familiar with “golden handcuffs”, but that sums up my situation. (If you click on the link you can see the Timing theme in action, as it turns out March is Professional Emancipation Month. Who knew? But I’m getting ahead of myself….)
About two months ago, I was having a shitty day at work and, in defiance and desperation, pulled up the local job ads (Timing). A nonprofit had posed my dream job (Timing). I submitted my resume, was contacted for an interview, had a fantastic experience, and then a not-so-fantastic follow up call. The job doesn’t pay well, which I was prepared for, but it is also a full-time job working out of a cubicle.
I have never had a full-time, cubicle job. I am a “get it done right and get out early” kind of worker. Being supervised by a clock … well, that definitely diminished the “dream job” part of the story.
After the phone call I sent the hiring manager an email detailing my excitement for the position but outlining my concerns about the schedule. And then I heard nothing.
That was four weeks ago. I had moved on with life. Until Wednesday.
I was catching up with a girlfriend over coffee. She asked about my job and I gave the usual answer, which was a longer explanation of the golden handcuffs. The conversation naturally moved on to other things, but in the back of my mind I continued ruminating on my answer and my situation. Finally, I stopped myself and thought “I am so tired of the drama and the over thinking. I just want to do what the Universe wants me to do. I want to be like St. Francis of Assisi: an instrument of peace.”
I am not overly religious or overly spiritual or overly anything. I am just a woman, living in 2014, semi-aware of things. And that was what I thought at that moment. And that thought gave me such calm. Such peace.
Within an hour or two, the nonprofit called and asked me to come in for a second interview. (Timing.) Later in the day, my client decided against extending our current scope, so things on this job will begin to slow. (Timing.) I am almost 100 days sober, so I am able to ask the Universe for help with clarity and appreciation, rather than avoidance and fear. (Timing.)
I go for the second interview on Monday. I have no idea if they will offer me the position, or if they are willing to negotiate hours, or if the job really is a “dream,” or if my family can peacefully coexist with a full-time job.
But I know that I am SOBER. And I know that I am READY FOR and OPEN TO good things.
And I know a Theme when I see one.