Monday, March 28

Is It?

It seems to me that there is a correlation between age and pride – false pride.  The older one gets, the greater the pride.

This first became apparent to me when I was in my adolescent years. I got into trouble for “pointing out” things to my elders. The “conversation” always ended with: “Going to a good school doesn’t mean you know more than your elders. That you are better than your elders. We have years of experience behind us. You’re just beginning your journey, while we’re on our way back. We deserve to be respected.”

Of course, such conversations provoked ill thoughts towards my elders. But such conversations also gave me the impression that, contrary to what they said, I am better than them. And, I am better than them because I am open-minded. I am open to mistakes, criticism and, thus, learning.

Now, the tables have turned. Now, I am the one on the defensive. I am the one feeling, “Who are you to tell me ….?” So, is it just part of the aging process? Is false pride part and parcel of growing old? Is it but natural?

Well, whether I am on the giving or receiving end of it, increasing false pride as one grows in years just doesn’t seem right. It feels like I am aging in reverse. Instead of pride, wisdom should accompany age.

Saturday, March 19

A Lesson In Humility

The company I work for has been restructuring – methodically – for the last 3 years. I knew that it was just a matter of time till the restructuring hits our group. And true enough, hit our group it did this week. It did not only hit our group. It hit me.

Tuesday, the VP’s secretary called me to say that I am needed at the office Thursday – the day that HR was supposed to talk to employees impacted by the restructuring. Instantly, it felt like ice cold water was doused over me; a fistful of crumpled paper crammed down my throat. Will I be ….? Can’t be! Please Lord, don’t let me be laid off …..

Fear. Anger. Regret. Insecurity. Embarrassment. Sadness. So much for positive thinking. Where did all the peace, contentment, and optimism that came with the coming of the new year go? Gone. Out the window. All of them.

Thursday. Did away with the sweater and jeans. Went to work in business attire. If I was going down, I swore that I’d go down in style. I walked into the VP’s office not knowing whether I had the usual smile on my face or not. I felt blank. Saw blank. Heard blank. Until, “I have a position that I believe is a perfect fit for you.” Am I being promoted? I was about to jump from my feet and give the VP a hug when the next thing I heard was, “Your position has been eliminated.”

Ok. I’m snapping back into the moment. My position has been eliminated, but they are offering me a new position. Same compensation and incentive package, but it is a job level lower.

A conference call later, I find out that the position isn’t entirely eliminated. The position is still there. Only I was eliminated. My colleague, already a decade or two with the company and a decade in the position, is staying. Turns out (I will know for sure in the next couple of weeks), the directive is to have only one person in this position per region. No more duplication of roles. Instead, a new position in a new group has been created. Thing is, this new position/group will be reporting to a different head and their coverage will not just be our region, but the whole of US.

I am thankful, very thankful, that I still have a job. So thankful that I still utter a prayer of thanks every chance I get. Also, I would like to believe that I still have a job because management values me. That I am “important”. And yet, why do I feel this pinch every time I remember that I got eliminated and my more senior colleague was retained? Feelings of inadequacy? Of competitiveness? Of second choice?

False pride. Lose it. Just be thankful. Think of how much more humbling being laid off would have been.  No, being laid off is one lesson in humility anyone would not want to have.

Tuesday, March 1

You Can't Handle The Truth!

Peeps, before you exhaust yourself getting a thief, a liar, a cheat to admit to the truth, think about the following: Do you really think your thief, liar, cheat will actually admit to the truth?
  • Better yet, will you actually believe what your offender says?
  • Does it really matter?  If you are willing and ready to forget, why do you need to know the truth?  What good will the truth do?
  • More importantly, can you handle the truth? You sure that the truth will set you free or get you into another frenzy?

What triggered the reflection?  Friend No. 3 just added to my list of friends having marriage woesAnd all three simultaneously have the itch -- no, the obsession -- of having their husbands admit to having affairs.  Sorry, but I just have to ask:  What’s with that?!

And what gives me the right to exclaim such?  Experience.  I went down that path before and it didn’t get me anywhere.  Correction.  It did lead me to some things.  More frustration.  More bitterness.  Separation.

I’m beginning to think that if couples want to stay together, sometimes the road less travelled -- not knowing the truth or not wanting to know the truth –- is the way to go.