Over the last year plus I’ve found myself overusing the phrase, “everything happens for a reason.” But only in the past months did I consciously notice the words coming out of my mouth or forming in my head during a one-way dialogue with myself.
I do believe in fate, to some degree, but lately, I’ve been relying on it. Anyway, I’m dancing around the subject, again. I was laid off. This is typically communicated as bad news. I would image a past version of myself, or someone not in my position, trying to sweep it under the rug quickly and get back on the horse. But in this story, in my case, it was a long overdue and highly-appreciative turning point. The details of my exit would have made for a great episode on The Days of Our Lives, but nothing I want to drag you through or relive here. This is called MyGreenerGrass, after all. But no, this is about why I’m grateful it happened.
Now, being the eternal cynic that I am, if I were reading this, I would immediately dismiss it as an ex-employee trying to build back up his pride and self-worth. Fair enough. But that same damaged ego would be out on the hunt for their next paycheck. Hungry for their next 401k, disability coverage and annual review. This is not my plan.
Short of conceding to complete blame for this situation, I will admit that I haven’t exactly spent the past year or so as a model employee. Since my falling out with several people in this company last Summer, my heart and conscience have been elsewhere. And during my radio silence for the past few weeks, I labored with the idea of posting this kind of material for the world to see.. still clinging to some threatening fear that a potential employer would read it and consider me damaged goods. But the reality is, my days of filling out a W4 are, in the words Paulie D, “doneski.”
The truth of the matter is that I had actually planned on leaving this job in June. Instead, they moved up my timetable let me go and handed me 7 weeks severance which directly translates to more time and unexpected funding for my business (bonus!). And while my website will be live within the month, I also went out and started freelancing as a technical Business Analyst / Project Manager. Just signed my second client this past Thursday and officially formed my second company, DigitalXBridge Consulting. People are willing to pay me to do what I do well, when I want, where I want. What have I been thinking for the past decade? And last but not least, I finally partnered up with Dad at Melfast, AKA my company’s vendor. (I absolutely plan on writing a post about life in small office, NJ. A welcome change from the tense, stuffy air on Wall St.) Yeah, OK, so I’m juggling 3 jobs and a business. But I’ve never been happier.
That wasn’t so bad. I feel like I just went to confession, or wrote my career’s right of passage. Maybe I should inscribe an epitaph on this post. Something like, “Here lies the first 12 years of Jason Melone’s career as an employee. May they rest in peace and be resurrected for a greater good.”
UPDATE: OK, you can’t make this stuff up… as I’m about to publish this post, my friend (and worst enemy) at my ex-employer just IM’d me to give me some juice on some recent happenings. He tells me, since I was let go, a new CEO was brought in, 8 others have been fired (and escorted from the building!), all consultants have been disbanded, one of the company’s core products had its plug pulled, the entire company is “on probation” and the multi-million dollar software project he and I had been managing is in jeopardy of being shelved. Ouch.
So yeah, what I was saying?… oh, right, everything happens for a reason. Ah, fate, you are a tricky bitch.