Sunday, March 13, 2011


I tell 'ya, loyal blog readers, I am feeling pretty damn weird.  Let me explain.

For more than 20 years, I worked for an organization that had me traveling a lot. Mostly what I did was conduct training, give speeches, and attend thousands of meetings all over the United States and its territories. Occasionally, my work involved travel to other countries, too. Not often, but enough to make things interesting. When big disasters happened, I engaged my "cross-training" and joined responders to do ... whatever ... on-scene and in the trenches, getting the job done side-by-side with very hard-working people with big hearts and caring service delivery.

I left that job at the end of 2004 for several reasons, and I will not belabor the rationale here. I went on to take care of an uncle through the winter of his life until his peaceful passing. After that, I accepted a "place-holder" job which was interesting, but removed from my passion (that is, my specific field of expertise.)

I was laid off from that job in June, 2010, and I think it was for a reason (besides the funding that supported it running out.) My sweet aunt needed a lot more attention, and I had the time to care for her through her life's winter, until her peaceful passing in January, 2011.

Meanwhile, I accepted a position in late November and I am pleased as punch to be back in my direct field, working with colleagues with whom I once worked before, and doing many things that I enjoy (again).

The thing is, this job does not have any "cross-trained response role." That means that when a big disaster happens, like the events of March 11, I did not run to the rescue... or run with colleagues to help. Sure, it was busy in the office and I was involved with media work, but it's not the same. Honestly, I kinda miss it.

Well, I do and I don't. The long hours and sleepless nights in crowded and noisy conditions become harder to bear the older one gets.

I did get an offer from a major player in disaster relief to go work with them for several weeks, but my current employer couldn't give me paid time off and I couldn't afford the financial hit to take time off without pay. So I'm still home, watching the news and emailing colleagues and tracking what's going on via social networks. But it's not the same. It just feels really, really, I mean really, weird.

Life is short: manage conundrums!

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