I have recently had many doors shut on me professionally, even though I am still gainfully employed. Last Thursday, I made up my mind to begin a new journey (that which I cannot specifically say on here at this point in time).
However, I did take the first step towards that new goal today.
In passing conversation at work, I spoke with one of my colleagues by the proverbial “water cooler.” I told her of my career woes and glass ceiling.
She said I was far too talented to stick around this place for the remaining 14.5 years I have until retirement. I thanked her, but said I may have something new on the horizon. She advised me to keep it to myself and just let that flower bloom. Then she began this story:
I was visiting with my cousin before she died. My cousin’s son was friends with a young man who, like you, was very intelligent and talented. He got his degree from UAB in graphic design. He would always complain that he couldn’t get a job with his degree. He applied so many different places but no one would take him on.
This young man loved to hike. He would go hiking all the time. One day, he decided to book a trip to go hiking in Colorado. The young man went on a long hike up a mountain. When he climbed down the mountain, he was at a rest area for hikers taking a break. He looked on the bulletin board near the water fountain and saw an ad for a new company that was hiring. It was for none other than a graphic design job at an up-and-coming company. Fate had willed the young man to go hiking at that time to read that very ad. The company was just around the corner; you know how Colorado is!
He wiped the sweat from his brow, ate his protein bar, and went inside the building. The company boss was in at that time and met the young man. He said, “We don’t normally do this, but you can meet with me in my office.”
A few weeks later when the young man returned to Alabama, he was visiting a relative in the hospital. He had to step out of the hospital room to take a phone call. The graphic design company had offered him a position after all!
The young man moved to Colorado and enjoyed his new position. Being an avid Star Wars fan, he was so pleased to find out that his new graphic design company worked with Disney on the newest Star Wars film. The young man was delighted to be in the right place, at the right time, in a job position made for him. He even played a part in creating the newest robot, BB8.
All of this was possible because the young man went on a hike.
So, just go hiking!
I needed to hear this story today more than anything. When something that I am meant to be doing now was suggested to me by my husband, I felt a huge spark. I even broke down crying last Thursday when I made this decision because I felt relieved and pushed in this direction.
But in the meantime, maybe I’ll just go hiking!
“…some taller mast of a pine, a shingle tree, or a more perfect hemlock than usual, standing like a pagoda in the midst of the woods; and many others I could mention. These were the shrines I visited both summer and winter.”–Henry David Thoreau, Walden
UPDATE: The secret I couldn’t share in this post was that I had applied to law school to begin classes in January of 2017. As fate would have it, the dean of the law school admitted me for this August and I started classes early. It’s everything I’ve dreamed of and more!