Career & Money, Culture, Life

When Life Happens: I Got Laid Off

We’ve all been there – at our lowest point. We’ve thought, “This is it. I can’t pick myself up. There’s no way I can get pass this.” Two weeks ago I was laid off from my job and I kind of knew it was going to happen. I have to be honest I was more hurt than shocked.

I spent a year of my life at the company and bonded with everyone there. My colleagues were more than just my colleagues. I considered them my friends. Remembering back as a business student, for the past two to three months, I knew things weren’t right at the company. We were cutting down on expenses, and work was thinning out. In the last month we were looking to relocate, had no office and we were working from home. Like any smart and business savvy person I immediately started looking for other job opportunities.

I’ve always liked writing, but I love fashion and the industry as a whole. I knew I wanted to pursue a career in writing when I started my bachelor’s degree at FIDM. Soon after discovering what I wanted to do, I started to apply to jobs. It was more like searching for writing jobs – anyone who lives in Los Angeles will know that the market is thin for writing positions. I soon realized that I was not going to find what I wanted in L.A. and stopped my search. I thought to myself, “They’re paying me to work here. I have a job now. If something were to come up I would apply for it.” The beginning of last month things started to get strange at work and I knew I needed to find another job – so my search for a job resumed.

I ran into the same roadblocks as I did 2 month before with all the writing jobs being on the east coast. I called my mom and said there is nothing here for me in Los Angeles, and she told me my dad said I should look for jobs in New York. That same day I got an email from my then boss saying they were having meetings with everyone and if I could come in the next day to talk. My gut was telling me something was wrong. I had my assumptions of why they wanted to meet. Maybe they would give us more insight about what was happening with the company or worse, they were letting us all go. To my dismay, I had walked into the CEO’s apartment complex to only walk out 10 minutes later laid off and with 2 weeks pay.

To my own surprise, I wasn’t shocked when I was told others and myself were being let go due budget cuts and closing down of departments. At the time I felt more hurt than mad that there was no warning and we were only given 2 weeks pay. I walked out of the apartment complex and walk to my car and the fact that I had just been laid off hadn’t hit me yet. I called my other colleague/friend who had her meeting before me and still after talking to her, my parents, and brother it still hadn’t hit me yet. I had just got laid off, had no money for next month’s rent, my expenses, or a job lined up.

It wasn’t until I was on my way to dinner for my friend’s birthday when an ocean of tears overcame me. I was in shock! I was angry, hurt, and was starting to panic. How was I going to find a job in 2 weeks so I could pay my rent? A two-week check didn’t cover my rent.  I had already been searching for jobs for about three months and I hadn’t found anything. In my mind I thought I would leave the company before anything like this happened. Life happened! I got laid off before I could find another job leaving me unemployed and with a couple hundred dollars in my bank account.

We draw this picture in our minds of how our life is going to be, and we add on to this picture to the point where we are convinced nothing could alter it or that it’s a reality. The truth is sometimes someone comes along and draws a new one over it. I have to be honest, I’m still hurt and upset how things unfolded. However, life goes on and feeling sorry for myself and moping around won’t get me another job. I believe this was a blessing in disguise, and have no ill feeling towards anyone.

I’ve applied to over 100 jobs in the past two weeks, went to one interview where I was certain I was getting the position, and filed for unemployment. I’m pretty hard on myself. I have this picture where I want to be in my life and I’m not there and it’s frustrating. There’s times where I have to remind myself that I’m only 21 and I got an early start on my career and life when I decided to graduate early from high school and move to L.A. at age 17.

God is always on time. Whether your religious or not we all have a purpose for our lives and it takes time to get there. That’s what’s beautiful about our lives and our life stories’ – the journey is never simple and easy. There will always be potholes, speed bumps, and stops signs down the road. We have to remind ourselves when life happens we can’t sit there and ponder on all the things that went wrong or why we’re so upset or angry.

When life happens we need to pick ourselves up and dust off the dirt. We can’t let the stop signs in our lives keep us from continuing our journey down the road. When life happens and our perfect picture of our life is just a picture and not a reality we need to not get discouraged and give up. The longer we stay down the harder it is to get up. I’m still unemployed, but I’m not letting one set back keep me from doing what I want to do and neither should you!

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