I was sitting here trying to figure out where to start, which tale to tell, and was surprised by which surfaced first. So I’ll begin there.
In January, I started a new job. I’m doing the same work I have been for the last six plus years but on a much larger scale. I enjoy the work I do and I like to be busy, so so far that part has all been good. When I made my decision to accept the job offer, I had no reservations. I was not at all concerned that this was not the right fit for me or anything like that. I had been unhappy in my previous job for way too long and it was time to move on to something else. Don’t get me wrong here, either, I am not one of those “the grass is always greener” people either. I know that there are challenges anywhere you go, no job is perfect.
Despite my troubles at my old job, I had a lot of good friends that I had made over the years. They knew the ups and downs of my life both in work and out. They were the only thing I knew I would miss when I made this change. But I didn’t realize how much. Although everyone I’ve met so far has been very nice (and I do mean that!), I haven’t really connected with anyone there. I can go a whole day without talking to anyone. For some people, that probably seems like an ideal day but for me it is very difficult. I’m used to stopping by to visit a friend for a couple minutes during the work day to catch up on the goings on of work and life. Having someone (or several someones) to each lunch with most days. Having someone who knows and cares what’s going on with me.
My birthday came and went on a work day. Those of you who know me know that I make a big deal out of my birthday. It’s weird to say but I feel like it’s the only day that’s truly mine. I spend a lot of time celebrating things that are important in other’s lives and I just feel like my birthday is my day to celebrate. My friends joke that it has become a birthday month, really, because we always end up celebrating throughout for various reasons (snow, difficulty scheduling time, whatever). My mom always calls me at the time I was born and this year was no exception. She asked me if anyone had wished me a happy birthday…and I said that no one knew and I didn’t think they would’ve cared anyway. It makes me feel stupid to write that because I know most people would rather their birthday slip by unnoticed. I guess that’s just the problem right now…I don’t want keep being unnoticed.
I keep thinking back to my friend Jess’ little brother. We’d ask him where he was going and he’d say he was going out to look for friends. I feel like that little kid now. Every day, I am looking for a friend.
Why does it matter? Why does it bother me that other people who have been there for years have friends and I can’t even seem to get in on a conversation? Aren’t I at an age where that shouldn’t matter anymore? But it does. People keep trying to reassure me and tell me that I’ve only been there a short time and it takes a while and so on. But I honestly don’t even see any opportunities. And that makes me sad. And makes me miss my old pals even more.