Thank God it’s Spring (and for flowers)

My bedroom bouquet

Spring is finally here and for that I say: Thank God.

Previously I’ve written about how my three favorite months of the year are March, June and October. I don’t think it’s coincidence that those three months are months of transformation. The early snowfall in March (Ohio weather at its typical) leading into sunshine and the flowers popping out of fresh ground right before April, the transition from spring to summer fracas and festivals in June and then the world exploding in vibrant colors in October right before the nights start to get longer in November.

I love and live for transformative times. I am a Sagittarius after all and those mutable signs crave adaptation. It’s a life force for us and espeically for me.

Yet this March was a little different.

Actually, it started back in mid-February. I don’t think I’ve shared this before, but I started my job last August as a contract-to-hire. February was the six month mark when I would have have received an offer from my company. The six month mark came … and nothing. I was a ball of anxiety that day, wondering if that was actually my last day and everyone but me knew it. Granted, I had no reason to believe nobody would tell me if that was my last day. My current place is awesome at communication and everyone there is lovely, to the point where it sometimes scares me since I got so used to the issues of previous workplaces – uncommunicative, gossipy, quick to throw people under the bus – and started thinking those issues were inescapable.

Logically I knew I had no reason feeling anxious on February 16th. But anxiety has never been a reasonable emotion.

Turns out my contract was extended for another month, which was initially a relief since I’m still recovering from being unemployed last year and all the stress that adventure gave me. The relief was short-lived though, as I had a new waiting game. My manager had accepted a new role at a different company, and one of his to-dos was to extend a verbal offer and have an informal informational interview with me in his last two weeks. Those two things happened, and the only thing we had to wait on was HR to email me a link to apply to the position. I was nervous all over again. First I was a mess while waiting for my manager to have those talks with me, since he had a lot on his plate to wrap up, and then I was nervous waiting on HR.

One of the truths of job seeking and applying is that securing the job in a certain timeframe will always be a bigger deal to the candidate than the company. Alison of Ask a Manager (off topic, but if anyone wants any and all advice on working, I cannot recommend Ask A Manager enough) explained that a two or three week stretch of waiting time will always be a bigger deal and priority to the person applying. In that same time period, the company will be so busy with day-to-day tasks that not responding for several weeks won’t be a big deal. I was hoping that it wouldn’t take weeks to get that link to apply.

I had waited long enough and was even starting to get sick from the worrying. I’ll spare you all the gory details, but the same day as my informational interview with my former manager, I walked over to Chick-Fil-A for lunch. I felt terrible on the short walk back to the office and wound up shuffling into one of the bathrooms to throw up. Not to be vulgar, but it’s pretty rare for me to get sick like that, to the point of where I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve gotten that sick in my 30 years. There’s been a period of several years between incidents, so getting sick like that was a shock to my system. I spent the rest of the day in a haze, still able to work but with Diet Coke and crackers by my side just in case.

On March 16th I couldn’t take it anymore, so I emailed the HR recruiter my manager had named and asked her if she knew when I could be expecting the link. She emailed me right back with that link and I filled out the application immediately. Emails were going to wait.

At 4:45 I got a phone call from the recruiter extending an offer.

On April 4th, my wait to become an associate will come to an end.

The past few mornings I finally woke up without a fog lingering over me. Physically I’m no longer feeling pulled down, and it feels like I never even got sick in the first place. My emotions are calm again, my mind is clear. I’m no longer feeling tired and uninterested in what’s going on around me.

And then today is the first day of Spring. The season of renewal, of the world opening up again and the sun shining a little brighter. With the stress off my chest and newfound strength, I’ve even started some spring cleaning projects. I’m taking old clothes I haven’t worn in years to Goodwill, de-cluttering the cupboards, re-organizing linen closets and finally putting away winter decorations in my living room in favor of bright silk flowers.

I even decided to buy two new flower vases and some cheap bouquets from Kroger yesterday. I love luxury as much as the next knight or dame, but don’t believe you have to spend a ton to get there. One of the vases is sitting on my dining room table. The other bouquet is on the nightstand in my bedroom. As a kid I used to associate flowers in a bedroom as a rich person thing, so if $15 is all it takes to feel rich and enjoy waking up in the morning, why not?

Flowers really do make the world a more enjoyable, livelier place. They also serve as an incredible reminder that even when life around them is unpredictable, it’s still very possible to bloom.

I hope you all have a great week ahead. Don’t worry friends – I’m going to be posting regularly again and discussing running. Spring racing season is coming up and I’m anticipating some delightful stories to come.

Yours in writing and running,

Allison

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