That's what my supervising partner told me at work this afternoon . . . I sat there for a second, thinking, "well, that sounds like maybe I am not getting laid off. . . wait, does it?" I didn't know which way was up anymore. Like I posted earlier, today was Pink Slip Friday and people were getting called in one by one to learn their fate . . . but I didn't get my talking-to until 1:30 p.m.! That means I waited around for hours, pretending to work in my office, clutching my stressed-out stomach, on the verge of tears, watching while people cried in the hallways or commiserated in the kitchen or sat in stony silence waiting their turn ~~ as people were told they were getting laid off, the emails started coming out, "leaving for the rest of the day." Many people left work early ~ the ones who stayed attended a full staff meeting around 2 pm where we learned more details about a possible Round 2 of lay-offs. So, for now, I am secure in my job ~~ if by "secure" you mean, like, I can walk around on egg-shells, fearful of the potential impending doom, and the rug can be pulled out from under me at any time.
So, it seems in my job-situation, like my law-school-experience and job-hunting and relationships, this mantra, "you're OK . . . until further notice," dominates . . . and I'm really tired of feeling/being in limbo ~ ~ I want someone, or something, or fate, or the Moon, or the pizza-delivery-guy to look me in the eye and say, "this is what you will do ~~ this is what you are destined to become." In the timeless words of Derek Zoolander ~ "Who Am I?"
Sigh. After the lay-offs, no one could concentrate at work and so after the staff meeting, people just started going home. I went home and read a little before going to dinner and read this funny, and timely, passage in David Schickler's Kissing in Manhattan :
Donna had grown up in Manhattan. As a girl she took ballet classes at Ms. Vivian's, on the Upper East Side. Ms. Vivian watched Donna's body carefully, to see whether Donna had a vocation for ballet. Ms. Vivian was an expert on the matter of young women's arches, calves, breasts, and demeanors. Fable had it that Ms. Vivian possessed gypsy blood, that she could read in a girl's limbs and attitudes that girl's destiny. Jezebel Hutch, for instance, grew up with Donna and took ballet at Ms. Vivian's for seven years, until the day Ms. Vivian tapped Jezebel's shoulder and said: "You are an astronaut."
Jezebel giggled. She was twelve. "What?"
Ms. Vivian was stone faced. "You are an astronaut. You will fly to the moon in the machines that men make. You will be noble, but you will not dance."
Jezebel's face collapsed. "But —"
Ms. Vivian pointed to the door. "Farewell," she said.
And I laughed out lout because I need a Ms. Vivian in my life, dammit. I feel like a yo-yo at work and in my personal life and in this great big ocean of a world . . . I mean, where the hell is my buoy? I'm not asking for a life raft, or a yacht, or even a paddle-boat . . . just a buoy, to mark the navigational channel I should take, to keep me afloat for a while until the Coast Guard gets here . . . and by Coast Guard, I just mean my kick-ass self . . . I'm treading water and my kick-ass rescue-self is tired so I need a little help.
And by help, I mean a little re-focus, a little loving support dammit, a little fun. So I drove to dinner at my friends Seb & Michele's house to laugh and scream and color with their amazing daughters, little Jac and Dylan. On the drive over, one of my favorite Matt Nathanson songs came on, Pretty The World, and his lyrics showed me a glimmer of direction:
show me how pretty the world is.
cause i envy the way that you move
show me how pretty the world is...cause i
want something just a little bit louder
show me how pretty the world is
cause you're brilliant when you try
show me how pretty the whole world is tonight
i never thought that i could be who i am
i never thought that i could see where i was
i always thought that all this was just wasn't me
i always thought that all this was could never be
So maybe all the things I'm scared of, the potential success and failure of trying to be an attorney, of trying to bitch-slap the law, of trying to pursue some-sort-of-social-justice-sensibility, maybe it is me, maybe it can be, maybe I can do it and not lose sight of what's important ~~ or, maybe, as my friend Autumn considered (before she passed the California Bar Exam ~ go Autumn!), I can become a magician ~~ as Autumn pointed out, I'd get to wear a cape and carry doves around. ~ :)
. . . ai, who knows . . .somebody somewhere, send me a Ms. Vivian, please.