Engineer by day, beadweaver by night (mostly), I like to look for answers to questions.
How do things work? What inspires you? What do you wonder about?
Explore the journey to creativity together.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


 I've been trying to write this post for about 8 months now.  This is a tough one.  The short version of the story is that we had a huge lay-off in my work place - almost 200 engineers lost their jobs over a period of a few days.  I did not lose my job, but I did go through a big emotional wobble.  I pretty much felt like the daffodil in the picture there.  I try to keep this blog really upbeat, so I did not have much to write about for a while.

Here's what I tried to write shortly after the layoff:

I've been debating with myself for a few weeks now on whether to write about this subject.  My workplace had a huge number of layoffs.  Fortunately, I still have a job.  I am very grateful for that; I am the breadwinner for my family.  Without my income and benefits package, we would be in very serious trouble. 

There are a lot of things that .  Many of my friends and long-time coworkers are suddenly gone.  Transitions are very important to help people adjust to major changes.  That's why we have retirement parties and celebrate marriages.  In a layoff, there is no transition.  I've worked as an engineer for 16 years in three different industries... 

I was having some trouble pulling my thoughts together in that last paragraph... I can't even remember now where I was going with that last sentence! :)

Work has been keeping me really busy.  I put my Etsy store and on-line indentity on hold for a while because I was just too tired in the evenings to keep up with it.  I am feeling better now.  Over the spring and summer I spent my free time doing very tangible things.  It is really cool that my family jumped in and made these group activities.
  • We planted a flower garden.
  • We started composting and vermicomposting.
  • We planted blueberries, a fig tree, strawberries, raspberries, a lemon tree and a bunch of tomatoes.
  • We joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) and started buying our produce from a local farm.
  • We stopped buying cereal, crackers and snacks from the store.  Now we make most all our food at home.
  • We built a chicken coop.
  • We raised 4 chickens who are now just about to start laying.
  • We trained our chickens and dogs to get along.
What is interesting about this list is that these are all things that made me feel more in control of my life.  A layoff makes a person lose trust and feel threatened.  I needed to do things outside of work to restore my sense of independence from the company and connection to my family, even if it is just in small ways.

I will post some more details about what we have been up to this summer - especially about the chickens.  I did not expect it, but I have fallen completely in love with chickens.  I had no idea they could be so delightful!

1 comment:

  1. I have been following your blog since I was googling (is that word now?) about why labradorite flashs and found your blog. I loved your writing style. I am glad you posted again and sorry you have had such a tough 8 months. I hope it gets better.


I love hearing your thoughts, questions and stories!