A couple months ago…in fact almost exactly 2 months ago to the day…I had coffee with a good friend that I do not get to see very often. [Sidebar: She was actually my boss at one point in time, but was too awesome to remain so for long.] Anyway, in the course of catching up, she told me an inspiring tale about how she had come to be employed in her current position. She resisted it at first, but ultimately it turned out to be an unexpectedly wonderful situation that made perfect & absolute sense of all of her various past experiences & interests which had, up to that point, seemed disparate – some even pointless. Over our big cups of coffee, she looked me in the eye & told me that she knew the same thing would happen to me, & that it would exceed my hopes & bring new opportunities & perks I hadn’t yet imagined. I loved this idea. Though I wasn’t quite as confident in that outcome, I managed to keep a little space open to the possibility even through the most frustrating days that followed.
For the next couple of months, I relentlessly wrote cover letters & filled out countless online applications, interviewed, was rejected or put on hold while decisions were postponed indefinitely… Passed through steady cycles of tear-shedding, chin-upping, getting back to it (repeat).
Then last week I interviewed for a position where everything just felt incredibly right. It seemed to make perfect sense of my otherwise sort of non sequitur work history as well some of my personal interests & most basic values. I clicked with the people & felt immediately at home there. I went in with a good feeling & left with a good feeling. Then, just a few days later, I heard from two of my references that they had received calls about me. The following week I received an offer. Not just an offer, but the best offer of my life thus far. So good I considered breaking with my principle to always attempt to negotiate. You’ll often read that one reason women’s average pay is lower is because they are so much more reluctant to negotiate for higher starting pay than men. I try to do my part to combat this phenomenon. (I seriously feel almost a moral obligation.) The impulse not to negotiate in that immediate wave of excitement & relief at receiving an offer is exactly why my policy is always to sleep on it at least one night. By morning I had coached myself into sticking to my guns about negotiating. It was nerve wracking & cost me 4 hours of what should have been sound sleep, but in the end it was so worth it. Through that conversation, I learned that what I was getting myself into was even better than I had initially perceived & on top of that I somehow managed to bump up the starting salary a little bit from what was already a great offer.
So, readers, your dedicated blogger will be only be partially-employed/unemployed for a little under 2 more weeks. I hope to make the most of the remaining ‘free’ time. I certainly hope I’ll be able to stick to the daily blog regimen even with this new (& welcome) significant time commitment.
In the meantime, I’m riding internal waves of gratitude, amazement, excitement, relief, & happiness. I am incredibly grateful for not only my amazing fortune-telling friend, but for all of the cheerleading, pep-talking, spirit-buoying words, thoughts, & actions of my family & friends throughout this challenging transition. My excitement & joy at this new turn of events is magnified exponentially by the fact that I have so many wonderful people in my life with whom to celebrate it.