November 8, 2013

Staying open to what might come. Subtitle: never burn a bridge

When hired in 2007, I was the designer for Tech Client. The lead Tech Client account person in our office was an amazing exec producer we'll call Go Go Engine. She taught me how to craft a team, how to run a meeting, how to pitch to clients. Then Tech Client was bought by the Evil Emp1re and Go Go Engine just wasn't thrilled by our other options at the time. She's moved on to three other agencies in the last four years.

Over the years we've stayed in touch via LinkedIn and occasional email exchanges. She reached out to me a couple days ago and we  chatted on the phone this morning. A few weeks ago she started a new job for one of our competitors. In discussions about the new direction they've hired her to initiate, my name came up. They aren't hiring for a specific position, but wanted to check about my availability/willingness to jump ship. The immediate felt need is a woman in Chicago who needs a fellow exper1ence des1gner to help create big picture solutions for major corporate clients. It would involve coming up with ideas, working with 3D designers to flesh out the ideas, pitching the concepts, then ushering them through to completion. The bonus is that the company's national headquarters are down the road from Brex's daycare. I could work out of that office for a boss in Chicago with Go Go Engine as a 2-level up advocate.

I may not be what Chicago Woman needs, but Go Go Engine at least wants me to talk with her and see if I'm a good fit for a position that's still a bit TBD. How's that for completely vague, yet deeply gratifying?

After feeling like my current boss sees me as a mediocre designer who's good for PPT, it's really, really affirming to have someone who knows and values me as a thinker.

In other news, I've been buried alive in generating graphics for an event in 2-weeks. Jrex got all his grants submitted and now has two papers and a big talk to prep. I think we're both seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

Brex continues to crack us up. He's now entered the "Brex do it" phase, which mostly means everything takes 3x as long. He feeds the dog every night, carefully balancing the cup of food and walking around the island to drop it in her dish without spilling any. He's learned to unzip his onesie pajamas "All la way to the foot". He's mostly potty trained, so that adds one more layer of logistics to every outing. Just pulling his pants and underwear down and back up is a production, never mind what goes into the potty. Sigh. Hand washing is agonizingly slow.

Yet, no matter what happens on the day to day with him, I have such a profound baseline of gratitude. Watching a dear friend struggle with infertility, another dear friend wrestle with singleness and childlessness, a third friend who had to have a hysterectomy in her early thirties, having a kid of our own was never guaranteed and I'm so, so grateful.

The challenge is to slow down enough to FEEL the gratitude and joy. It's too easy to slip into an agenda driven day and be focused on how LONG it all takes and how hard it is to not just be able to Walk. Out. The. Door. Already. Yet I know these will be wistful, fleeting, happy memories in a very short time.

So here I am, busily, gratefully, excitedly checking in.


Jack Towe said...

Wonderful. Wonderful. Wonderful.

Rachel said...

The job sounds perfect. Hope it comes through for you. It always pays to stay in touch with people in your network.

Jack Towe said...

Any follow-up news yet on Chicago?

Re Brex: Keep in mind that he's practicing. Soon he'll be able to dress himself in 7.84 seconds (all wrong). Enjoy.