Thursday, February 28, 2008

Sweet Freedom!

Well, I'm not exactly free yet, but just about as good as free. Tomorrow is my last day in office, my boss is paying me out two weeks but letting me just work one. This seems to be a pretty popular thing to do lately.

Today my company had a quarterly meeting, that I didn't go to. And then they were letting everyone off for the rest of the day. So I had an interview in the morning with a job prospect and then went running in the afternoon.

It was a gorgeous afternoon! I probably should have gone up to some of the trails, but I wanted a little extra time to tidy up the house and get some dinner ready for tonight. Besides, I have a long trail run on Saturday so I probably should taper a little before then.

It feels strange to know that a chapter of my life is closing up now. For four years I could bank on going to this job every week day. It is in a nice area and in a beautiful building with gorgeous views of the SF Bay. There are many things that I'll miss about it. The security, and the friendships.

This odd feeling of change is sometimes exhilarating, and sometimes scary and sad. I find myself alternating between joy and depression over my decision. Early this morning I lay awake for a few hours mulling over my decision and feeling a bit depressed. Until I took some NyQuil to shut off my head.

Ultimately though, I feel like cutting off this sure thing is making me face myself. I feel like I've lost myself in the identity of my job. And cutting ties with my sure, but suffocating job is forcing my true self to resurface. I had a curious encounter with a former boss yesterday who had heard the news. She wholeheartedly congratulated me on my decision, asked if I would like to work with her on some freelance projects (oh yes!) and said "You'll make more money freelancing and you'll feel more appreciated." That really struck a chord with me. Appreciation. Now that everyone knows I'm leaving I'm hearing the appreciation from all quarters. Before, never. Maybe everyone was too busy. Or the corporate culture at this company has become one of taking people for granted. Either way, this culture has left me feeling like I was unworthy of praise, not looked up to by peers and just stagnating. Now that I'm going off on my own I've brushed off my old work samples and really truly seen how good they are. I feel like facing myself in this jobless, "naked" way I see again what I want to do, and what my talents are. I'm forcing myself to not be afraid, to not give in to the evil Fear which makes me take the easy path. Peeling away my corporate identity I see my precious children, my husband, the things that I used to love to do like creative writing and my running aspirations all looking back at me and saying "This is really YOU. Enjoy it. Revel in it. And this is the way to go. These are the things that will lead you down your true path."

I'm looking forward to the future. It starts now.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

New Beginnings, More Running

Fear is the most evil of things. At least for me, I can just about trace every negative thing that I've caused in my life, or that has been done to me to fear. My latest, biggest looming fear has revolved around my job, how I feared loosing it, how I feared leaving it.

I've decided to quit tomorrow.

After looking at it honestly from all sides, I see that it's been holding me back for at least 6 months now, maybe even for an entire year. Staying in it is stagnating me emotionally and professionally. It's time to bust out and start anew. Maybe also get a little well deserved R&R in the bargain.

I'm banishing fear from my life. I'm going to stop worrying about what other people think, what my parents will say. It's all related to that icky little mind gremlin - Fear. I'm 39 years old, if I don't start living for myself now, I never will. And if I live life my way I'm sure to do great things.

And now, I'm going to go for a run.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Some Good Running, Some Flu

I've had some great training runs up into my local hills where I can actually feel that my running is getting stronger the few days after a run. And then I get the flu. Twice. And it's going round and round my office. We seem to be averaging at least one sick day a week for each of us there. Part of the reason I'm sure is that a lot of us are just unhappy, me included.

I'd like to go freelance, but my family's health insurance depends on me. It's the ONLY thing keeping me at that job right now. What to do? Does anyone have any good recommendations for private health insurance that WON'T send an average family to the poor house?

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Great Training Run, Bad Race

Ugh. I realized two things as I was almost at the top of Kings Mountain in Huddart park 1. I definitely needed much more hill training and 2. I wasn't really over my flu. I hoped that the flu would've maybe made me a little bit lighter and thus a bit more hill-worthy. It only made me nauseous as I tried, feebly to attack the hills. T'was a shitty race for me, I came in fully a 1/2 later than I had planned on. But I think that it was a great training run. I learned more of what I need to do, and that's certainly worth something.

I rocked on the descent. It felt like old times when I used to train with Mike Duncan, George Cammorata, Amy Wang and Jake Niebaum. Mike taught me how to hammer the descents. Even with all of these off of the trail circuit I still could pass anyone I saw on the descent and no one passed me. Now if only I can translate this to the uphills....

I still enjoyed myself, the beautiful woods and the lovely, shortlived waterfalls that dotted the trail are soothing to the soul. I even liked all of the mudpuddles. I was very, very cold afterwards though, and had to escape quickly to get home for a hot bath. Also, my hands swelled up like balloons on this run. Very odd. I think it had to do with my swinging them furiously like pendulums to get me uphill. It's happened before at altitude, but nothing has ever come of it so I won't worry. Maybe a salt thing.

Next on the agenda is Skyline. That'll be 23 k. So in the upcomming weeks I'll be pounding it out hard on the hills to get some of that oxygen capacity back.