Leap and the net will appear (in theory)

jesus even this photo gives me angina

I’ve been struggling with unemployment for over a year. I’ve been filling in as a Temp here and there, but nothing has really worked out.

Until now.

Lemme back up a sec and mention that although I do enjoy a little mystery here and there, I’m not so good with uncertainty and my life has seemingly been filled with it since being laid off last summer. Turning fifty and starting over (in any capacity) is challenging, of course. It’s a reality check to be sure, and somewhat of a surreal experience. I don’t think it’s inaccurate to say that I’ve worked some pretty shitty assignments and have eaten my share of humble pie. And you know what?  That’s okay. Life is full of highs and lows and this frustrating limbo has become a daily reality for me, albeit a somewhat unpleasant one.  Like most small children, I do better with structure and consistency. And snacks.

So here we are. I have landed a job in seasonal retail sales in a field I know nothing about. Now, while this shouldn’t sound all that daunting, I’m suddenly full of fear and self doubt. The confident accomplished woman inside of me thinks this is ridiculous, but unfortunately, she’s not the one I’ve been listening to.  A wise friend of mine is fond of saying he has two small dudes that stand on each of his shoulders, much like the popular angel/devil scenario.  However in his case, one of the them manufactures and sells bullshit, and the other one buys it. I totally get it.

I have all of the tools and resources to be a success in this role, and I know that once immersed in the position, I will intuitively know how to handle situations and be a solid asset. I’m a people person, and I’ve always found sales to be more about people than products, anyway. I know all of this but yet I’m still letting myself spiral into the unhealthy behavior of predicting and choreographing hypothetical ridiculous situations and disastrous outcomes. Now, some of this is legit, at least in my mind. I am literally decades older than most of my coworkers. This excites and terrifies me at the same time. I have always been lucky to have a vast age span in my friendships and we all know I have the maturity level of a 7th grade boy. However, in this situation I’m letting myself be intimidated by the likelihood that these millennials will know a helluva lot more about everything than I will.


Oh, God. In the immortal words of Charlie Brown, I’m doomed.

some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end.  life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.  delicious ambiguity . . .

-gilda radner

I lamented this exact thing to my pal Carol yesterday and in typical Carol fashion, she predictably put her own spin on it, and gave me a brilliant analogy. “It’s like you’re on one of those rope bridges,” she said. “You’re mostly supported, but you can’t see the other side and it’s all wobbly and unsure, and your footing feels somewhat unstable. You’re pretty sure you’ll make it to the other side, though, but it’s genuinely scary. You just have to find your solid ground.”

Solid ground.  Isn’t that what we’re all looking for?  Isn’t that the desired end game?  To feel sure of ourselves and steady and supported? Again, I don’t mind mystery, it’s the uncertainty I can do without. Life is uncertain. There’s always a first day of school. No one wakes up knowing exactly what the day holds.

So with that comfort and knowledge I will get in the shower. I will put on my proverbial big girl panties and face my day with a confident smile and willingness.  In my final interview, they told me that they can teach me the skills, that I just have to have the will.  The will to learn, and to be taught. The will to learn from my mistakes and not take things personally. Suit up and show up, folks, and the rest will fall into place. Life is change and if you’re lucky, growth. These are also the promises recovery has taught me, so I feel like I’m in a bit of a full circle moment, you know?

So, that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

And if I could do exactly that, without explosive diarrhea, well that would just be great.

I have cavities older than Brittney.








Saturday I had some errands to run just like I’m sure many of you do on your Saturdays.  Two of my errands were;  1. to purchase some ginger beer at my local fancy health food place, and 2. to pick up a crazy-ass specific light-bulb for the hood of our stove.  Lucky for me the hardware store is right next to our local fancy health food place.

Now let me pause right here to mention that if you haven’t tried ginger beer, I suggest you do. Now that my nightly martini(s) is no longer an option, I consider this my nightly “treat”, if you will.  You know, the drink you don’t drink with dinner, but beforehand while you’re puttering around  watching the news or multitasking and whatnot.  In most households this is probably a glass of wine or something else as lovely.  Well, for me, now, it’s ginger beer.  It’s yummy and spicy and (fun fact!) terrific for your digestive system.  Now you CAN say that about vodka as well except for the fact that vodka will sometimes clean you out but not in the way you’d like it to.

ANYWAY.  I purchased my ginger beer and decided to just bop over to the hardware store to grab my lightbulb without taking the ginger beer to my car first.  It’s just next door, after all.

I ran into the hardware and grabbed my lightbulb.  I placed the lightbulb and the ginger beer on the conveyor belt as I rummaged through my purse for my wallet.  I turned down a bag at the local fancy health food place because I didn’t want to take one for a purchase that actually CAME with it’s own handle.  The effervescent cashier at the hardware store was EXCITED to see me.  She was PERKY.   She was young.  I mean young.  Like basically a fetus wearing a name tag.  Her eyes lit up when she spotted my ginger beer.  I mentioned to her that I was headed to my car from the local fancy health food place when I remembered I needed my lightbulb.

She piped up cheerfully!  “OH. MY. GOD”, she gasped.  “Have you tried these with bourbon?!?  They are DELICIOUS!  You just mix the ginger beer in with some bourbon and then just pour that over some ice with a little lime juice and they are SO refreshing!”


I’m pretty sure I looked exactly like this.

What I said:  “Really?  That sounds amazing!  I can’t wait to try it – have a great day!”

What I wanted to say:ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME, Brittney?!?  WHAT DO YOU KNOW FROM BOURBON? What do you know, period? I INVENTED that recipe, not Pinterest. It’s all fun and games, isn’t it Brittney!?!  One minute you’re doing an athletic (yet sexy) keg stand and the next thing you know it’s been THIRTY YEARS. I bet nothing on you has even THOUGHT about sagging, has it? I bet you’re wearing a neon thong right now, AREN’T YOU BRITTNEY? Why don’t you just give me my fucking light-bulb before I punch you in your snap-chatting throat?”

See?  Progress. I am so thankful that I no longer have anger issues.