This year started off different for me and it is ending on a rather…. conflicting note. 2009 will never be duplicated and in some ways I am so very thankful for it. However, there have been aspects of this year that I will treasure forever. So even though circumstances are concerning at this very moment, my heart and mind have been lifted to heights that I wish never to loose.
The start of 2009 found me in surgery for bulging discs in my back. For two months I was out of work on short term disability. That in itself wasn’t a bad thing. Rather, it was something that just had to be endured. I am so thankful that I had a job at the time that allowed me an opportunity to take care of my health and recover. I spent that time taking courses in college toward my Associates degree. I regret that it took this long to get back into school and remember how rewarding school could be, but I do not regret actually doing it.
Once I returned to work I found out that my job would soon be lost in the archives of time. I only had until the end of June due to demand what I did dying out globally. I knew that a change in career paths lay ahead, but the idea of a change was actually thrilling. The company that I worked for treated all of us extremely well with a generous severance package that included benefits through the end of the year. All in all I was very lucky. Little did I realise the unemployment rate was going to spiral upwards as far and fast as it did. Still I was not going to be discouraged. Still I looked at the future as a bright shinning beacon.
A bit later, and after some conversations with family and friends, I decided that I would start my own business doing something I thoroughly enjoyed, Social Media Promotions. Once my layoff was done and I was free to pursue new opportunities, I took some of my severance money and made a few business investments (You can check my business out at http://redbolling.com). A few Clients slowly started signing up. I had found something to do as a career that I loved. Finally, I felt like I had found my calling. Unfortunately, joy alone doesn’t always put food on the table and keep a roof over your head, but it does provide that light on direction. A full time job would still be needed for basic survival while building on my passion.
It would be the trials of job hunting that would be my mental nemesis. With each new search, each next posting, I was reminded of the mistakes from my past that tend to hinder my immediate opportunities. Mistakes like; not staying in college previously, not being more social and networking enough in my life, and aging. Well that last one I can’t help, and it’s not like I am ready to file for social security, but much of my experience is centered around industries where a much more youthful appearance and mentality is very desirable. This still wasn’t going to bring me far enough down to defeat me. Nor were the misleading interviews or the multiple rejection letters or the endless retyping of information on applications. One thing that did bring me great hope and personal satisfaction was making my list of references. I probably smiled bigger than Pres. Barack Obama when I realised just how easy it was to think of people that knew how capable I am and how valuable I would be to any company or client.
Now, the biggest part of my year was still to come. Something I had previously thought was going to be absolutely impossible for me to ever do. Something that had been a dream of mine since high school. England. The stars aligned, opportunities came together and I found myself in London for 2 weeks in November. England for me was a sort of a pilgrimage. I had learned much about my ancestry over the past few years and the British Islands and Ireland grew into a bit of an obsession. My trip to England would be the start of gaining a complete picture of what I was made up of (See the videos here http://www.youtube.com/user/dlion73 and pictures here http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=30965&id=1654634727). I miss that city and country so much already, but it is good to be back home with family.
Shortly after I returned from England the holidays were starting. Thanksgiving was especially gratifying this year. Christmas turned into a more stressful period than normal for me. With money running out and no job in sight, the commercial part of Christmas got me really down. There were a couple of things that lifted my spirits though; The Beatles, YouTube videos from some amazing YouTubers and family. In fact, it here that I was able to piece together just what I was supposed to get out of 2009.
Through out the whole year my family was there for me. From the surgery I received support from them, from the lay off I was given concern from them, from the job hunt and new business they were always available to help where they could, and during the England trip I was shown excitement from them. My whole life I have felt like an outcast from family (and all other parts of my life as well). This year taught me that I wasn’t an outcast. I am just drastically different than they are. I felt accepted and wanted for the first time in my life. No matter what my circumstances were I was wanted. Now that is a special gift to have in your heart.
So what are you taking away from 2009? What are you expecting from 2010? Leave me a comment and let me know.
Happy New Year to all of you wonderful people. May it bring you joy, wealth, and love.
David B Boling