After I knew I was leaving my position, but before my last day I got an email from a professor at a local university asking if I could be a guest lecturer for her class on U.S. Health care Landscape. She had gotten my name and seen my resume from one of her colleagues with whom I had done an informational interview when I was trying to find a job. I was so excited. After talking with her, I knew I was going to speak about reproductive rights and reproductive justice. I was happy for the chance. After talking with Partner and asking for advice on how to keep students engaged at 8:30 in the morning, I stayed up way too late and over prepared. The night before, I could hardly sleep.
The day of the class I felt nervous. The professor had warned me that the students do not participate easily and may look bored. I was relieved that everyone stayed awake. When we did interactive exercises, people participated. They asked questions which I answered. I left the session feeling really good and was so happy for the reminder that I do know how to do things well. This is also gave me another idea for professional opportunities to pursue.
Now, I hope to carry this confidence and accomplishment into the bar exam preparation and execution!
The last week of transition has felt strange. I go from being busy and feeling happy to being productive to feeling really sad and frustrated. As much as I try to keep the anxiety at bay and focus on the tasks at hand which are among other things preparing for the bar exam and the arrival of our new addition, I felt myself worried that something I did to cause the drama in the job will reappear again either in another job or worse in some other aspect of my life like parenthood or test taking.
The weekend after my last day at work, I went to New York to see my dear friend Beth perform in a show that she wrote, produced and performed in; over the course of our friendship, I have had the honor of seeing Beth on stage several times, read her writing, and know of her passion. I was so excited to see all of those things come together. One of the key lines of the play is:
what would you choose if you were to do more than let life do the choosing for you?
Even before I saw the show, I was thinking about that concept. The play itself explores the main character's battle navigating the internal and external voices, personal and societal, on her journey to find self-love, purpose, and authenticity.
The trip itself was a whirlwind. I arrived in New York at about 3:30 and stayed with one of Partner's friends from high school, who is now one of my friends through marriage :) I took a short nap and then we left to get dinner. We found a vegetarian restaurant called, The Pickle Shack. I was instantly excited to try the fried pickles. Over dinner, B and I bonded about relationships and job stress. Plus, I discovered I have a new addiction: fried pickles! I purchased some pickles, that are not fried, to bring home. Hopefully, they can satisfy my craving until I return to Brooklyn :)
By the time I sat down for the show, I immediately noticed that my feet were swollen and I was exhausted. Once the show began, I was immediately engrossed and so happy to be there. As usual, I loved watching Beth perform and the message of being courageous enough to begin and continue resonated with me. Plus, I got see and meet so many people I had heard so much about and had met only a few times. It was a bit like a family reunion. As soon as the lights went on, my fatigue returned and I knew that I was not up for going out. I did get to talk with Beth and felt sad to leave, but so happy to have been there.
B and I finished the night with some ice cream on his couch and my introduction to the show Rupaul's Drag Race which instantly made me laugh and increased my vocabulary.
Yesterday was my last day of work. I had intense mixed emotions about the day and was debating how to handle my final meeting with my supervisor. Last week, I had an exit interview with the HR person and gave some feedback on process and things which I thought were bullshit. I wanted to end on a positive note, but felt like my supervisor also needed to hear that some of her actions were fucked up. The meeting was much tamer than I anticpated. She asked a lot of questions about a recent trip I took with the family, new baby preparation, and bar exam procedure. We wrapped up the remaining work items and then she closed with saying that she was sorry things did not work out, that I was a joy to know personally and she wished that the work had been better. I decided to take a high-ish road and said that while the last two months have been difficult, I hope that she could see the good things I did and then I listed them. I also gave some feedback on how the job announcement could be re-written to more accurately reflect her expectations. I surprised myself by asking her to keep in touch and keep me in mind for future opportunities.
The rest of the day was pretty nice. I went to lunch with some of my favorite coworkers. There was a birthday club event where I enjoyed ice cream. I got a sweet card which made me cry. I organized my email and files. When I left I did get teary because I truly did like some of my colleagues and I felt so scared about being unemployed not by choice. Maybe the Universe was trying to shift my focus because I started having pain in my side and then felt some flutters which could have been Bud. I smiled as I realized the future is growing and developing even when I am not paying attention and/or in ways I am not even seeing.
Today, I took the Little One to school and upgraded my phone. I got information about gyms, registered for a bar prep class, and renewed my driver's license. It felt good to be productive with life things. I felt a little lost without office work to think about, but also relieved that I did not have stress of anxiety or guilt about not doing more work while at home. My bar review begins on May 5th. Onward!