As the beginning of the year rolled around we began planning for the big move. We’ve been preparing for it (purging our stuff, selling our stuff, purging our stuff some more) as we were aiming for the move to occur sometime in the spring. Plus, it was important to us to give our landlord more than the typical one month notification. After all, he was so kind to us by becoming a landlord after we sold the Victorian two-story house. He really did not want to be a landlord. We wanted to return the kindness our landlord by providing ample notice of when we’d be moving out. So, we needed to determine our move out date.
Giving our landlord our notification made our plans magically become real. It solidified and forced our evolving escapades to move forward. It would set it into motion. We’ve been graciously day dreaming about this adventure while comfortably living in a sticks and bricks. Continuing our daily lives, routines, behaviors revolved around traditional living. Preparing and tiredly thinking about many different scenarios of daily living in an RV. Exhaustively thinking about and imaging what we need to bring with us and how would we use that object. Which by the way, we thought we got rid of enough stuff, but we were utterly wrong. More about this later. Our notification to our landlord forced me to realize that this is happening. Its one thing to day dream about future plans, its another to have it executed.
The anticipation buildup also impacted my situation. The clock was ticking to break the news to my employer. About a week before putting my notice in, I had a brilliant idea! Ask to work remotely. I was so impressed with this thought that I began running “what if” scenarios in my mind. What if they’d let me work remotely? What if I was able to bring my work computer and phone and continue chugging away at the mountain of work my position entails? What if I need to fly back for work, what effective ways would I spend my time while in town? What if we need to tow a car rather than the motor bike?
I didn’t think that my employer would say yes, but one of my motto’s is “its always a no unless you ask”. The ask was truly more important for my self-confidence and worth, then the answer. So, I asked. At first, the answer was “I don’t know, no one has ever asked that before”. This was promising. My boss needed to find out a few things so we reconvened about a week and a half later (nothing is quick within the realm of a public servant). Our second meeting was an update of exchanged words such as “I don’t want to lose you and I’m working on a path towards a yes”. And, “I really enjoy working here and under your leadership”. Hm. Fascinating. In fact, this was exciting. Only one past employer desperately tried to talk me into staying working for them.
The happy endorphins were rapidly released in my brain and by this point, I got my hopes up and I was excited. I began spending mental energy towards planning what work I’d accomplish and how I was going to do it. I imagined myself getting all of that work done as a result of removing the distracting noise that takes place within the walls of my employer. For example, useless, unstructured (no agenda or follow-up action items), and poorly facilitated meetings (and I attended a lot of these). The interruptions from colleagues who had “just a quick question” and an hour later would be finished. Waiting to move forward but couldn’t because the decision maker conveniently was never in their office, wouldn’t answer my phone calls, nor respond to my emails. My discussions with management interrupted by other colleagues who had “just a quick question” for the person I was speaking to. Needless to say, I was excited to be getting rid of all of this noise and have the ability to just focus on my work. Have the peace and quiet to critically think and strategically plan aspects of my programs to move them forward.
The end of the month rolled around and I still have not received an answer from my employer. I wanted to give them the courtesy of letting them know the status of my personal plans for our evolving escapades. The last day we were moving out of the rental, I finally received an answer. No. The department was simply not ready to make that leap. They felt they needed someone physically there to carry out the work. Even though I was willing to accommodate that by flying back every so often, utilize technology (video conferencing), etc.
Throughout that month of waiting for an answer, my intuition was telling me that the answer was ultimately a no. I simply ignored it. The funny thing was, when my ears finally heard no, my heart didn’t sink into my chest as that would have been my normal reaction. Was I disappointed? Yes. I put so much fore thought, mental capacity, energy, and hope into making this odd request be successful for both myself and my employer. But in the end, I was relieved to have my anxiety and worry subside. I was so worried about being a good worker, producing quality work, and continuing to build my leadership skills within the bounds of my current position. Simultaneously, I was relieved that I finally had closure (an answer) and now its time to move on. I did what I could. I have to accept that it wasn’t meant to be. I’m meant to do something else.
I am good at what I do. I am valuable. I’m passionate about my work and I take pride in the quality of my work. I’m disappointed that my story didn’t end with the “and my employer allowed me to work remotely…”. But that is not going to stop me. I have ideas and am looking forward to where I want to go next, professionally.
Now its time to get this escapade rolling…