Today was my official last day on my old job...a strange one it was....the morning was like any other.... I visited a client... and went a bit beyond my normal job duties to make sure all was right with his world before I stepped out of it....then went back to the office...my boss left for the day at noon....just told me goodbye like it was any other day....I thought okaaaay. Still not sure what that meant....either she is angry that I am leaving, or as relieved as I am that we will no longer be working together.
And the rest of the day was again normal....maybe a little more stressful because I wanted to make sure everything possible was in order before I leave there for good...have a couple loose ends to tie up next week the evening I work...and that will be it...fini....kind of sad really, but I was not as emotional as I thought I would be...it was a relief to box up the rest of my personal belongings. Although I did forget my CD player...have to remember to grab it next week.
One of the best moments of day though......3 of my employees came in to turn in their paperwork, and tell me a final goodbye.....one brought a gift of chocolates....that I told her I should probably leave for them....I instituted 3 things during my time as their supervisor that they have loved....1) I always kept a dish of chocolates for them to munch on while they vented to me about their clients. 2) I created a place on one of my office walls.....everytime a client gave one of them a compliment, I wrote it down on a postit and stuck it on the wall....it now covers an area about 6 X 6 feet...I didn't realize how much they enjoyed that until one of them said it will be sad to see the "good words" wall go...I am hoping my replacement keeps it going....it takes no time at all...and means a lot. 3) laughter...I allowed them to laugh, we joked, we shared bizarre client stories and allowed ourselves that space to laugh... they could put it all out there...and they knew I would understand, laugh with them, and yes....sometimes cry with them....
I have reviewed my time with them all, and realized how much they have opened up, how much trust they gave me, and I am proud of the kind of boss I was, I may not have always followed the rules, I bend way way more than I ever follow...but it was always for the best. I hope their next supervisor will give them that gift...the ability to trust.
We went out for a quick drink afterward...we had the bar to ourselves since we left before regular office hours are over....we laughed so hard and so much that the restaurant staff came over to see what all the fun was about...and no we weren't drunk...one drink each.... We each realized that perhaps we let everyday life interfere and should have perhaps done it sooner, much sooner. They told the bartender that it was an anti-celebration--not wanting their boss to leave, and how many people could say that? Each of them told me they loved me when we hugged goodbye...oh I will miss them....each so different, each having within herself a warm loving giving soul...they could not do the job they do without such. Those 7 people I will miss so much...they taught me more than any job I have ever had before...except perhaps motherhood, and that was really a part of what I gave them, I offered them nurturing when they needed it.
There have been many times when I have questioned my abilities, many times when I thought I could be so much better than I was....but the goodbye gift they gave me today was the knowledge that I did a lot more right than I did wrong. That is such a wonderful feeling.
Now I get to look forward to next week, with excitement and a little bit of dread....so much to learn...oh wow so much new to learn.....and I will have to keep reminding myself to lower my expectations of myself...I always want to know and understand immediately...rationally I know that doesn't happen...but unconsciously I expect complete brilliance from me...and that ain't gonna happen. Someone once told me it takes almost 3 years to really know a job....I don't know if I can wait that long.
Changes are afoot in my life....hopefully I will be happy with this new turn in my life....one small step in a direction that will lead me....hmmm somewhere....not sure where yet...but somewhere good.