A few weeks ago, my co-worker's husband was laid off. I know all too well how he feels, and know now more than ever how fortunate I was to find such a good job so quickly.
I have had a lot of long conversations with her about this whole process, and today she shared with me that they had a blow up of emotions on Saturday. She had thought he was doing really well, had gotten through the worst, blah blah...we had a long talk today about the short and long term effects this would have on him personally and professionally, as well as the impact this could have on their relationship. She is 25 and he is 27; this was his first job out of college. They are recently married (September) and are still adjusting to life as a married couple. She left public accounting (a very hard life these days) and went through a job change 2 months before they were married - suffice to say, they have been through a lot in the last 9 months.
In talking with Jaclyn about everything that was going on, I was surprised to find myself as emotional as I did during the conversation. I told Jaclyn that even though I had found a great job and was very happy and knew in all reality my job was safe, there was still that part of me that would never really be 100% secure in a job again. I also told her not to underestimate the power of personalizing this (which he seems to be doing), as I did the very same thing. As we talked through all this stuff, I realized that while my climbing legs to scale the brick walls of life's little challenges were still in good shape, there is a part of me that is still very fragile as a result of this experience. I feel as though I have to prove my worth not only to those I work for and with, but to myself as well; rest assured, the former does not hold a candle to the latter. :)
I am sure over time this too shall pass, but today showed me that maybe I was not as far along in the process as I thought I might be. My job was one of the primary things in my life I knew I was good at; the layoff caused me not only to question myself professionally, but spilled over into every other part of my life as well, despite my greatest efforts. The support of my family and friends has been nothing short of spectacular, but ultimately, the road of regaining my confidence is a road I have to travel on my own. I don't have a destination or an arrival date, but I hope I will know it when I get there...and hope that it comes sooner rather than later.
Meanwhile, please pray to the job gods for Jaclyn's husband. The job gods descended on me pretty quickly, so hopefully a similar prayer chain will do the same for him.