Pearls & Vodka

Terminated: We don’t jump through hoops for contractors…

“This contract is terminated, effective immediately…”

It’s been 22 days since I last blogged. 22 happens to be “my number.” So, I figured, “no time like the present.”

I’ve been in a period of silence. If you know me, you know it couldn’t last forever.

I was just “sitting with life” so to speak.

Maybe that idea doesn’t make sense to you, or the necessity doesn’t register to you. But it will come. It always does. No one is exempt.

Let’s get candid…

We moved our family to Houston one month ago tomorrow. 4 weeks.

We moved here thanks to a great job opportunity that I had received. On paper, it looked like my dream job, dream company…you get the picture.

Two weeks into it, my contract was terminated.

Their exact words were, “We don’t jump through hoops for contractors.”

Yep.

“This contract is terminated, effective immediately…”

Around $10k in relocation expenses, uprooting my family and terminated.

Before your mind goes off the deep end with conspiracy theories, I did not do anything wrong. There are no salacious details. The truth is the travel aspect of the job increased drastically and quickly and was not sustainable for our family. As a contractor, I was expendable.

I don’t have anything negative to say about that company. Or those people.

Granted it stung. Granted it was a sucker punch. And if I let my mind go there, bitterness can surely arise.

But, I’m better than that. I was raised better than that. I want better than that in my life.

The old me would have hopped on the internet and exploded. Verbal vomit. Twitter rants. Blog post laments. Social Media diatribes.

But instead, silence.

I just sat in it all. Some grief, some bitterness, some anger, some disbelief, some pain, some fear, some worry, some anxiety, some guilt, some questioning.

In the next few days I’ll be starting my new job. With a new company. Here in Houston still, the Asberry fam is loving Texas, so I don’t see that changing for quite some time.

I’ve learned some stuff I wanted to share.

Some stuff I want to put out there. Some things I want to be able to come back and look through later on in life.

So here goes…

  • Even so.

Losing your job is quite the jolt to the system, regardless of circumstances. Losing your job with a husband and son who moved across the country for you is a jolt, on steroids. But here’s what I know, even so, their love and support will not change. I’m not in the least bit blind to the fact that I’m married to an incredible man. I called him from the parking garage that Monday morning that I was terminated, shaking, and yet somehow numb. He said, “it will be fine, you will find something better, just come home.” Just come home. And I did. I came home and he was waiting at the door, he hugged me and we carried on. I woke up my son that morning and his smile reminded me that he couldn’t care less what job I had, he loved me even so.

  • Not everything requires a tweet.

Our current President might disagree, and the old me would probably have also. But I kept this news private. Sure, I wanted to blast the company and the situation. But I didn’t. Even the most hard-headed can grow! Now, don’t let me fool you, I did look into the possibility of legal retribution. I’m not a saint. As a contractor though, your hands are pretty tied, and so I moved on quickly from that idea. But I didn’t blast this news for all to see and hear. I held it close. My momma and my tribe. That’s about it. And I’m glad I kept it that way. I’m glad because I wasn’t jaded by the opinions of others, I never questioned my worth based on the thoughts of others. And I felt supported and cared about, non-stop.

  • Just keep swimming.

I love the movie Finding Nemo.” I’ve almost gotten the words “Just keep swimming” tattooed on my foot numerous times. And here I am again, in yet another situation, where those words echo loudly in my ears.  When you lose your job, you’ve got very few options, a) do nothing and wallow, or b) get your ass in gear and find a job. I chose the latter. I called recruiters and managers I knew on my drive home that Monday. I was on the phone putting myself out there before I even got out of the parking garage of my old office. And I didn’t stop. I never sold myself short. I never stopped believing in what I wanted and what I had to offer.

  • Go to the pool.

My husband told me the day my contract was terminated, “go to the pool.” Now candidly, I argued. I’ve not done it near as much as he has told me to. And yes, I scoffed. But he said, “take this time for you.” And he knows I love being in any body of water. So, I did. I applied to jobs from the pool. I did phone interviews from the pool. And I took some time for me. I read a few books. Listened to a lot of podcasts and checked out quite a few new albums. And tan fat is always cuter than pale fat!

  • Don’t settle.

I could have easily accepted some temp work the day after my contract terminated. I could have taken a few jobs that would have put me on the road a lot. I could have taken a job offering a lot less money. But why? Why put my family through that? Why put myself through that? Why not go after what I’ve put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into? Why settle when you’ve worked hard for the career you have? Honestly, I could have agreed to the bonkers travel schedule that was sprung on me at the job I was terminated from. But why would I settle for less than what’s best for me and for my family?

Nothing about the past few weeks has been easy.

Bills still had to be paid. Groceries still had to be bought. Laundry still had to be done. My family still needed me. My friends still needed me. Life had to keep going on. That job was great on paper, but it was not the right fit. I have zero regrets about moving to Houston. We love it here. My husband starts an incredible new job on Monday as well. Our son loves his new school, soccer, and swimming. We are loving seeing friends and family more often. We love being Texans.

The silence is over for me.

For now. I’m sure there will be more periods of it as life goes on. But for now, I’m back. I’ll be on this space more often. I’ve got a few blogs in the basket to publish this week. I’ve still got plenty more to say.

For today though, be patient, God always comes through. It may not look a thing in the world like you thought, but you’ll see Him. As my Mom told me Sunday, “We’ll get through this, we always do.

And you will too.

Photo by Ricardo Mancía on Unsplash