This Working Girl Is Going On Vacation.

View from the Office

I am trying to write more.  It helps me process all the things I have going on in my life.  This is not one of my better posts, but it is where I am right now. Baby steps.

First, I got a new job. And I have already started.  I am now working for a company based in Seattle. I’ve been in Seattle, training, for the last 2 weeks.  I have one more week of training before I go on vacation.  More on that later.

This company is amazing.  Everyone is SO NICE and helpful.  They are busy, they work hard, but they all have lives outside of work. The executive team believes in grit, integrity, honesty, and open communication. It is a great fit for me.  My career coach would be proud.

I am feeling a bit melancholy about it all. I wish I could retire now. I have so much life to live, I have family I want to support, there are things I want to do. I feel like I have been shackled to a job for 22 years and I tasted a bit of freedom. And I loved it. I crave it now. I want it.  I desperately want it.  But I had 5 months to figure out a way to retire and I wasn’t able to make it happen.   So if I have to go to work, this is the company I want to be with, the people I want to work with, and the journey I am now on.

Second, my bestie Unicorns & Rainbows and I are headed to Amalfi Coast on June 16th.  We will be there for 10 full days. I am beyond excited.  It was a splurge, especially since the $$ came from my savings (since I was jobless), but it is going to be worth it.  We are headed back to one of our favorite places, Villa Scarpariello.  I hope Prince Luigi is there again.  He is such a cutie.

 

 

Bestie Might Move.

Stating the very obvious, it has been a while since I’ve written. I’ve been busy working my ass off.  I’ve been focused on my career, on making a substantial difference in the first 90 days.

I’m so busy, why write now?  Because my best friend has been interviewing for a phenomenal job opportunity.  It has been a long and arduous process.  But the process is nearing a conclusion and it looks very very promising.  I am so happy for her.  This opportunity is what she has been working so hard for – and to be completely honest, what women, in the software industry, have been wanting for so long – the coveted executive position. The only catch is that she has to move – to Seattle.  Which is a great place to live, we have friends there, and the cost of living is so much more livable than the Bay Area.

My heart hurts.  The thought of losing another bestie to another state makes me really sad. Really sad, crying sad.  I have 4 besties. Girlfriends that I’ve made plans to retire with:

  • Unicorns – who may potentially move to Seattle
  • CLicious – who moved to Utah 2 years ago
  • Jewels – currently dealing with a personal tragedy so great that it will take many years to heal
  • My longest bestie – probably knows the most about me. She is married with her own life on the East Coast

I have other friends that are around that care about me and I them.  With more effort on my part they could become substantial influences and best friends.

Right now what I am feeling is the simple sadness of missing someone.  Unicorns left for Europe right when I separated from my Ex.  I was so happy for her, but the depth of the alone-ness that I felt was devastating.  I do not know where I would be if CLicious and her husband hadn’t adopted me and included me in everything that they did.  They made me family… I will never forget their generosity.

The thought of Unicorns moving away has my stomach in knots, my heart torn apart.  I am very upset about it.  I automatically have gone back to the place I was 8 years ago – during the divorce and her departure.  Later, I remember clearly when CLicious left. I spent 6 months in a daze.  I had to relearn how to live, I had to figure out a new routine.  I can say I am still not completely over her departure. The thought of not having both Unicorns and CLicious makes me very sad.  And alone.

I am 45 years old.  I have no children.  My career is great…. but I am certainly not where I want or thought I would be at 45….  I love the company, the work, the potential.  But I am not a VP. If I work hard I can make the executive ranks in a few years….  so what, so I will be a VP when I reach my 50’s?  Is that really what is important? Is that really what I want?  No.

So what do I want?  I want a partner. Someone who I can be vulnerable with. Someone that I can support and who supports me.  I want a relationship where we have each others backs.  We look after each other, care for one another. What do I need? I need to feel secure and safe.   I am not lonely so it isn’t about just being with someone, with anyone. It’s about sharing life with a super special person that I care about and they care for me.

Yes, I have ATrain, the Ex, who wants to get back together.  I can’t see this being successful.  Not because he isn’t serious about it. He loves me. I love him.  Personality wise we make a great team.  But at the end of the day, I do not think we want the same things. He is happy with how things are. I want so much more.

Anyway, what you just got is my ramblings after drinking a few glasses of red wine….  Not that wine is required.  I’ve been so busy these last few months… busy and exhausted. With what you may ask?

  • I’ve been working my ass off at my new job (90 days in and so far so good).
  • Commuting..  taking public transportation and listening to podcasts to fill the time.
  • Totaled my car.. and just bought a new-to-me car.
  • Pre-registered want-to-be owner of a Tesla Model 3.
  • Trappings of a regular life – work and personal travel, family stuff, etc..

I will do my best to write more regularly.  My dramatic reaction to my bestie moving away  inspired me to write tonight.

Back To Work w/o A Car. Public Transport Sucks.

imageI am alive and well.  I have been crazy busy – started a new job (I know, finally out of my retirement phase).  During my first week on the job I got into an accident. It was my fault…I didn’t know where I was going, I looked at the map on my phone, looked up, and didn’t have enough time to stop.  I hit someone head on.  The accident was just that, an accident, and it was totally my fault.  I walked away with a lot of bruises and aches. Took a few weeks to recover…  I still have some neck pain.  But my beautiful car, my Black Beauty did not fare so well.  The other driver had car damage but was physically fine.

Today I recieved a final call from State Farm. They have determined her a “total loss”. They have given me what they think she is worth…  Mere pennies for her true worth.  I am unable to replace her with the $$ they will give me.  I have been without a car for 2 weeks now and it looks like I will be without a car for a while.

This wouldn’t be a big deal if I was still “semi-retired” and had all the time in the world to run errands. Hell, I was walking everywhere when time wasn’t a factor.  But this is no longer the case.  3 weeks ago I returned to full-time work.  Yes, I found employment that I am very excited about. My new company is headquartered 23 miles from home… A rediculous amount if we speak in travel time on CA highways. I can get to the office in 30 minutes during off-peak hours. It takes me over an hour by public transportation. Public transportation includes a 15 minute walk, a 40 minute train ride, a 15 minute shuttle ride and a few minutes of waiting between each transition. Grrrrr.

In addition, I have to leave at the crack of dawn no matter what transport option I choose.  I am not a morning person.  I have purchased the ShockClock to change this… So far not so good.  Either it is not working, or 30% shock wave is not enough to wake me..  Tonight I have it set to 50%.. Which freaking hurts when I tested it out…  If I am not up at the crack of dawn tomorrow, it is because I was not able to electrocute myself via the ShockClock…

Honestly, if public transportation was an option, I would prefer to NOT get a car now, and wait for my Tesla Model 3… Yes, I registered. Yes I am on the waiting list.  Yes, I would wait… I love that car.. So sexy, so svelte, so what I want….

The new job. Outside of the commute – awesome. I love the people. It is a perfect fit for me.  I get to use my technical knowledge and fulfill my geeky side, while doing the things I love the most – speaking with customers, creating processeses and programs, and measuring results.  When I am “working”, it really doesn’t feel like working.  Which is really the best job ever.  If it weren’t for the commute, it would be perfect.  Once I get up to speed I will be able to reduce my face time in the office. And once I get another vehicle, I will be able to reduce the time it takes me to get to/from the office.  But right now, 3 hours in commute time is killing me……

All in all, life is good.  I no longer have a car, a car that I loved.But she did save my life. And for that I am forever grateful.  I will hold out until I find another just like her, which may take a while given the State Farm settlement.   I do love my agent and felt that the total loss agent was great too.  But the numbers just did not work in my favor. So those of you who have older cars that are well kept with low miles… Do NOT expect any insurance agency to respect its value.   Get a replacement cost policy (if you haven’t done so already)..  My .02

Alright… I need to get some sleep. Prepare for my morning electrocution.  :=)

 

For The Love of Yoga.

Yoga retreat 2016I just completed the last day of my yoga retreat in Ixtapa Mexico.  I am in transit – heading back home to Northern CA. I’m sad to be leaving….

First, Ixtapa Mexico is a wonderful place.  The people are great, the town is far less developed (touristy) than other cities in Mexico (Cabo, Cancun, etc).  I have always wanted to visit Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo and I’m glad I did – it is awesome.  I’ve always wanted to visit because it is where Andy Dufrane escapes to in the movie – Shawshank Redemption. And when his best friend Red gets out – he shows up too.  I think of Zihuatanejo as the Mecca to my favorite movie.  This place is great.

Second, one of my favorite people opened her world up to me.  I got to spend time with her and meet all her friends.  It’s a precious thing when the people you like want to share special people and moments.  When she told me about the retreat I was sold… I booked it right away – some 7 months ago – and now the trip is over….. 😦

I will do my best to summarize –

  • The instructor is simply amazing.  I LOVE Kundalini yoga.  I have not been able to find a yoga class or instructor that incorporates Kundalini, the breath, flow, and meditation in a class.  The yogi –  Jorge Luna – has me in love with yoga again.  His Yoga was a great combination of breath/connection (Kundalini) , stretch/movement/flow (Vinyassa), and fun!  Yes, remember when exercise was fun, not a task/to-do/chore?  Uh-hum mm, those days. I loved every day of class. And he has inspired me to re-launch my search for a yogi in my area that inspires me to get my ass out of bed on a weekend.
  • The people are just like me… But not.  Yep, all of these amazing people from all walks of life – different backgrounds, cultures, color, sex, gender preference.. You name it, it was in the mix.  No matter what was shared/observed, there was nothing but openness to learn, to understand, and to enjoy.  I realize this may sound “zen like”, but it’s true. Most of these people only see each other when on this trip – and they attend this retreat year over year to see their friends again.  It is a great group of amazing people from all walks of life.
  • The location – Las Brisas Resort– a beautiful natural preserve.  The hotel is a mere 15 minutes from the airport… It has a natural environment – it feels like you are in a rainforest, not in a Ritz Carlton.  It was very clean but not manicured. The pools were great and the beach was amazing.  The food was really good for an all-inclusive resort and they have some top notch restaurants available on premises.  The rooms were spacious and the resort was completely full two nights during my stay and it did not feel crowded at all.  My only complaint is that I wished they would turn off the pool fountains so we could hear the ocean from the pool…  I know right, first world problems.

Would I go again?  Absolutely.  I will definitely go on the next trip – if they will have me (Ask me about the “gummy experiment”).    I do hope I get an invite the next time around!!

 

 

 

Taking Some Time Off.

southern_coast_of_turkey

Hello all.

So much has happened in these last few months.

  • Family – AbFab’s husband lost his legs in a work accident.  Here is a news video of how he survived – inspirational.  They are both so strong, so resilient. The kids – Mayonaise and Shanaynay are doing well and they love their dad with or without legs.
  • Travel – I had an opportunity to go to Turkey and I did it.  I went to Turkey for 10 days with one of my best friends – Unicorns. She suggested it one week, we booked our tickets the next week, then we left the next week. Impromtu.  It was one of, if not the best trip I’ve ever taken. More on this later.
  • Work – not going well at all…the product doesn’t work and leadership is lacking – in both inspiration and direction.  Every team works in silo’s – Sales selling product we don’t have, Product delivering product that doesn’t work.  Since I work with customers every day, I feel the chaos. These people, our customers, put their careers on the line to purchase and adopt our technology. And we consistently let them down.

So, I’ve made a decision.  I made it a few weeks ago, but I’ve been letting it stew in my brain for a bit before making it a reality.  I am resigning.  I will let my manager know on Friday. My last day will be Nov. 13th. I am resigning before having another job.   My plan is to get centered again. This will include spending time with myself, getting healthy, traveling, and reconnecting with family and friends.

Not only will I be starting an exercise regimen, I will be traveling.  I plan to go back to Istanbul during the Thanksgiving holiday. Then I plan to spend a few weeks in Utah with AbFab and her family. I will also see my twin sister and my parents. My goal during this time away from work is to focus on me and doing what makes me happy.  And in my spare time I will look for work.

I am aware that this is extremely risky.  But I am burnt out. I may just do some consulting work and continue to think well into 2016…  Only time will tell what opens up to me.  But I’m not doing “this” again – busting my ass for a company that doesn’t appreciate the work that I do. I will not make myself physically sick with stress and work overload.  I WILL find a great company, that has great leadership, and that will appreciate my skills, abilities, and what I bring to the table.  That’s it.  Until this time, I will find consulting jobs that will support me.  That is my decision.

So yes, I am throwing caution to the wind and moving forward with what my heart is telling me is the right thing for me.  Although I am tidying up things around the house and checking out local yoga studios, I will officially begin my journey of self-rediscovery on Nov. 2nd with Oprah and Deepak 21 day meditation series – Become What You Believe.  I plan to update this blog very regularly as I go through my reinvention – writing thoughts down really helps me.

If any of you have ever done this before, I’d love to hear your thoughts on what worked, what didn’t.. Or if you haven’t, I’d love to hear what you would do if you made such a decision – would you travel, stay at home, visit with family, friends, etc… ?

My next blog will be about my experience in Turkey – which I loved – both the country and the people.

Family Tragedy.

Just a few short months ago I was hanging out by a pool, relaxing, and putting off my work stress for the day. It’s been a ridiculous journey and has only gotten worse.  Which is why I haven’t written – as my parents taught me, if I don’t have anything nice to say, it’s best to say nothing.  So I’ve written nothing.

Work stress has been overwhelming.  So much so that my Dr. says that I will need medication if I do not control it.  So I’ve been meditating and medicating to help myself deal with the high level of stress. I do NOT want my adrenals to shut down and require prescription drugs for the rest of my life.

But now a family tragedy has pushed my work stress out of my mind.  My nieces husband was in a work accident and has lost both of his legs.  Yes, his legs are gone.  He is still in intensive care and is headed into his 3rd surgery tomorrow.

I HATE being so far away.  I do not like that I’m not able to be there, to help, to support, to do anything, even if it’s just sitting with my niece at the hospital.  I feel so helpless.. She has so much family around her now she has requested that I come out in 2-3 weeks… which of course I will.

I have set up a gofundme for them here – https://www.gofundme.com/newlegsforjohn – please donate and/or share this URL with others.  Any little bit helps.  The way I figure it, if 1000 people donate $50, AbFab’s family will have enough financial support to get them through the next year without worrying about losing their home.

I’m not sure what else to say. Except that all the whining I’ve done over the last 3 years has me feeling spoiled and ungrateful.  Life does suck sometimes and it will toss a whammy or two my way, but at least I have my limbs.  I now have a new perspective …

I’m sure my new-found perspective will get me writing again.

 

 

 

Body Confident – New Year Resolution Update.

healthy-body-mind-imageI’ve been thinking a lot lately, probably too much.  As hard as I tried, I just couldn’t turn off my thoughts.  It affected my work – I had so much work to do, but I could not focus. At All. My mind was so fuzzy, it took me forever to get simple things done. The worst part is that I knew it was happening – it was a super slow movie playing – you know the story, the outcome, and it takes soooo long to play out.

I will update you on all my thoughts later.  Right now this is just a quick update on the body confident part of my 2015 New Years Resolution

  • Lose Weight – I went to the doctor last week and I am officially down 4 pounds.  It makes me feel really good that both the doctor and my scale register the same weight loss.  Also, I went to the doctors at the end of the day and it still showed 4 pounds down (I usually weigh myself first thing in the morning).  This means its not just about the scale, but is now officially part of my medical record.  For FYI – I lost 3 pounds in January, and one whole whopping pound in the months of February and March.
  • Exercise More – I also did take a Belly Dancing class. That was super fun!  These next few months I’ll be playing softball with my company softball team.  I just found my roller blades –  I’m now on the hunt for my knee and elbow pads. 🙂  I know I’m going to need them.
  • Stomach Issues – I also have an appointment with Dr. Feldman – a holistic doctor who is going to help me get back on track stomach wise. She helped one of my best friends through her stomach issues. My girlfriend swears by this woman.  I’m looking forward to working with her – and getting healthy again.

That’s it for me for now.  Looking forward to updating you on the fun things soon.