Goodbye to California.
I'm a little out of words because I already spilled a little of this on Facebook and to some of my friends. But I'll tell the same story using different words if I can.
Ode to Coleman Kane:
Today I handed in my resignation at work. It honest to God broke my heart. I love my job. I have loved it since the instant I started working there a little over 3 years ago. There are many reasons to love my job. We work in a great location, just about 3 blocks from the beach, which you can see from most of the windows. I get to do things I love. I know it sounds nuts, but I love paper work. It makes me feel important when I have paperwork to do. I have gotten to learn many things at my job. Things I never expected. I book travel overseas. That was not a part of my job when I started, but something I was able to take on during my time there. And although at times I may bitch about having to do it, secretly I absolutely love it. I also love the hours I work. They are wonderfully regular, which is a dream for a single mother like myself. Monday - Friday. 8-5. I get holidays off. I acquire vacation time.
But most of all are the people I work with. My God. What a fantastic collection of people. Humorous, friendly, tight knit, laid back, wonderful people. All of them. They have all been so special to me. So nice and encouraging and they have offered me such guidance when I feel lost. I could never have made it, nor would I ever have stayed so long without this magnificent cast of characters. And my favorite person of all of them is my boss, Coleman Kane. I have worked many places in my time. I've sold cell phones to people in malls, I've been the door girl at a downtown club, I've processed paperwork on some less than saintly people working at a power plant, I've run my own business, I've worked in retail, I sold Christmas trees, I fabricated orthodontic appliances, I even worked for a Mouse. And in all of my wanderings I have never had a boss who cared so much for the people working for him. He takes care of us in such wonderful and sometimes funny ways. He sees to it that every Friday is not just casual, but Casual Pizza Friday. He makes sure that we have hilarious office parties. He's put up with me through all my wide eyed confusion and mistakes and takes more time than he can probably afford at any given moment to explain things in a way that my slow moving mind can understand. He's a friend to everyone he works with. He remembers details about our personal family lives. He's hosted office parties at his house because that's the kind of guy he is and those are the kinds of people he hires. People who are wonderful and people who can be trusted.
I have grown so fond of my boss, and I hope that he is fond of me. At least in a way that would never allow him to curse my name in vain, although he pretends to curse it on occasion. Since joining the company, never once did I wish I worked somewhere else or for someone else. Not many people understand me, or even tolerate me for long. But my boss has always been so kind to me and that has meant the world to me. I swear if I had a choice I would have never left.
Ode to my family:
We'll get into my choice here.
My family is more incredible than yours. That's the truth. Not just my immediate family either. All of us. We have about 12 million people in my family and every one is a gem. Concentrating for a moment on my immediate family though, we have been to hell and back more than once over the last five or ten years. In the last 4 years alone I had a baby, witnessed the decline of my marriage, went through a long battle with depression, lost my house to foreclosure, lost my husband to his own demons, and put on 90 pounds. Through it all, my family never left my side. Not one time ever. Not even for five minutes. Not even when I wanted them to. My temper, my mood and my general outlook on life has had violent swings up and down for years now and God bless them, they stuck by me. And they were happy to do it.
My family has suffered it's own series of unfortunate incidents over the past few years (on top of an emotional basket case of a daughter, can you imagine?). It leaves us now with my parents health in a state more delicate than I would hope for. I don't know how much they wish for me to share about their personal lives, so I will just leave it at they should no longer be working, and can therefor no longer live "comfortably" in California. And I use the term comfortable loosely, and I think a lot of Californians will know what I'm talking about.
So they must depart the land of beaches and orange groves and Starbucks as far as the eye can see. And I could never let that happen without placing myself and my daughter by their side. I have no choice, because there is no choice. There is no choice because there is no question. There is only fact. We are family, and we need each other.
I am an emotion basket case right now. Not only am I coming to terms with my impending departure to the Lone Star State, but my daughter is gone to spend 9 days with her father. I have never been away from her for so long. She has only been gone for 3 night-nights and I am already starting to go numb. I keep forgetting that she is not home when I leave work. I pull up into the drive way and right before I open the garage it occurs to me that she is not inside waiting for me. I have only gotten to speak with her once since she left, and it was very brief. I was waiting up to Skype with her this evening after she got home from a restaurant, but her father sent me a text saying she had fallen asleep. Disappointment and heartache immediately follow.
My eyes are swollen 3 times their normal puffiness. My face needs no moisturizer tonight because it is still damp with tears. This has been a very emotional few hours. With the handing in of my resignation comes the end of my ability to pretend that this is not really happening. "Yes it is. And you better start to pack because, frankly honey, you've got a lot of baggage."