I don’t do so well with change. I like my world nice and neat and orderly. I like plans and knowing how everything is going to go. I like predictability. So, yeah, change and I? Not the very best of friends. She doesn’t play very well with my pal, mild anxiety disorder. So…

I also don’t talk much about that my workplace, ThePlaceThatShallNotBeDiscussed. Seeing how even innocent remarks made in SocialMediaLand tend to creep into (and sometimes ruin) your professional life, I think it’s a pretty good policy. But I’m going to make a small exception today.

Last Thursday, someone who became one of my best friends, someone I’ve worked with for the past fourteen years, said her goodbyes and walked away to be a stay-at-home-mom to two darling and energetic toddlers. It was the right choice for her, and despite her fear, I know she’s got this, absolutely.

But, me? I’m not so sure. Know why? I don’t do so well with change.

Fourteen years is a long time, you guys. For eleven of those years, my friend and I were the only two people in our department besides our boss, who was kind enough (and smart enough) to let us run things how we liked. We created policies and implemented them, reinvented our image (our image and also our department’s) so many times over. We covered for each other, smacked each other upside the head, saw each other through so many work crises.

For fourteen years, we spent nine hours a day together, chatting and sharing and listening. We had better recall of each others’ lives than most of our other friends. How could we not considering how much time we spent together? When we met, she was dating the loser who turned into The Big Break-up, and I wasn’t even engaged. I remember the weekend she met her future husband. We saw each other through marriages, children, layoffs, getting rehired, a divorce, kiddo crises, moving to other departments, coming back to where we belong, and dating ridiculousness. We’ve been through it all.

I don’t do well with change.

But I also don’t do well with not being good at something. So I’m working on it; I’m working on getting better at all these changes. I take a deep breath and plan out the day, work on training the new girl, focus on all the little tricks, try to focus on the big picture instead of all the differences in the right now. I’ve texted back and forth with my friend, talking her off the ledge with the all-kids-all-the-time craziness, and she talks me off my but-she’s-not-you! ledge. It helps. I use one of the mantras that helps with my anxiety, that pretty soon this will be the new normal. New girl is sharp. She’s funny. This can work. In ten years when the girls graduate and I move back home, maybe it will be nearly as sad, that Katie-&-NewGirl’s reign is coming to an end.

And all that starts in the now. So. Caffeine in. Deep breath out. One task, one conversation, one joke at a time. It’s not going to be easy…but it’s still a lot easier than being a stay-at-home mom! (Sorry, Megan – I couldn’t resist!)


One Response to “Ch-ch-changes.”

  1. Kathy Says:

    Way easier than being a stay-at-home mom. You got this & soon it will be the new normal. I feel your pain though – my workplace change is coming.

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