They say things happen in threes. That life blows will come three at a time. It’s assumed that once three “bad” things happen, you’ll be in the clear (at least until a new cycle starts.)
Last week I stared down #1 and #2 and actually thought to myself, “things happen in 3s, what am I missing? What’s coming?”
We knew #1 and #2 were coming, we’d known for months. Years even. But the third one blind-sided us. Sort of.
This is the first part of the a three-post series. Three different events, one after the other, that have changed life as we knew it.
This first part started over 10 years ago. Hubby and I were living in Oklahoma, he had just finished up his M.A. at Oklahoma State University and was working for the FAA. He’d been interviewing for different jobs within the FAA and other aviation fields when his academic adviser forwarded him a job opportunity from another former student.
Hubby applied for the job and a few weeks later was called out-of-town for an in-person interview with the company. He ended up getting that job. And almost exactly 10 years ago (neither of us can remember the exact date, but it was sometime in April), we set off for Florida.
We drove together, straight through from Oklahoma City to my grandmother’s house in South Florida. Hubby started his new job that week while I returned to Oklahoma City to finish out the school year.
For the past ten years he’s been with that company. The same company that originally brought us to Florida also took us to Dublin and agreed to bring us back to Florida when I needed to be home. That company and his co-workers have been our Florida family for almost exactly 10 years.
But as of last week, that company no longer exists. Bought out by a competitor, the name is gone. The only reality we’ve known since originally moving to Florida. Before kids. Before we were married.
The past few months have been nothing less than stressful. We knew the sale and transition was coming. Even before the official buyer was announced in October, we knew something was changing. The company had been for sale numerous times throughout the years. They filed bankruptcy back when we were originally supposed to be heading to Dublin. We were very aware that change was coming.
What we haven’t known for the past 6+ months, though, is what it would mean for our family. What the new company would be like. What position hubby would have in the new company. If my husband would even have a position after all was said and done. For over 6 months we have been in a holding pattern, just waiting to find out if my husband would have a job at all.
The company (both business-wise and people) we have literally grown up in, from newly engaged to four kids deep, is no more. I’m sure the families we have come to know will over time disperse, moving on to bigger and better things for them.
And while knowing we can (and hopefully will) keep in touch with friends we’ve made is comforting, there is something really heartbreaking about knowing something we were part of, that was so much a part of us, just doesn’t exist anymore.
It’s not as if we chose to leave for greener pastures. It’s not as if we made the decision to part ways. Instead, it was a reality we were forced into without being asked. We weren’t given a choice.
His company didn’t define us by any means. It certainly wasn’t all we were. But we were always happy to be a part of it. Because that’s what it felt like, like we were a part of something.
People rarely stay with the same company for ten years these days. Usually to move up you’ve got to move on, especially in an industry like hubby’s. We were lucky that we were able to stay with the same company for this long. And it’s heartbreaking to see it all just disappear overnight. Literally.