Thursday, May 26, 2011

The New Office

20 months. A nice sounding number.

I started my new job this week. A new transition for me once again. So much new, all the time it seems. For some reason, I didn't prepare myself for the questions, and the feelings that come up with them.

Sitting here in this empty office.

A bit of a blank slate.

White walls, nails where pictures used to hang.

Small holes in the walls where prior residents hung their photos and memories.

Staples where those quick postings were attached, now all torn down.

All that is left behind are indications of others, that used to be. Feels like being surrounded by ghosts.

What am I doing here?

"Hey, what brought you to San Diego?"

It's the question everyone asks, yet clearly no time for any type of meaningful response.

Oh, just needed a change.

Tomorrow I actually move into the office that will be my new home away from home for a significant amount of time each day. I'm realizing how important this environment will be. I really need to be comforted by a space that feels like home, that reflects me, and that I can build on.

Yet, while I wait, and find myself unable to tune out the ghostly walls, the feeling of detachment, and the sense of no history, so I mourn. I want to close the office door. I want to sit and cry. I've never had a private office, and don't know that this is the best time for me to have one. I have too much alone time as it is. I wonder if I'll draw out my sessions with clients longer than my peers, out of sheer loneliness or to fill the empty space.

Hey, don't feel sorry for me. I'm being paid well.

Hey, don't worry about me, I'm surrounded by what seems like very nice people.

Roots will be established, and friendships will be created. My life outside work has improved significantly. I no longer go home and stare at the walls. Well, maybe I still do at times, yet I clearly have options at this point.

I'm pinching myself... yes, he is still gone.

The office is now almost empty. Everyone has left the building. I'm in no hurry. I want to finally say it out loud...

I'm here because my husband died.

I'm here because I wanted to die.

I'm here to continue my healing.

I'm here to start over.

Tomorrow begins the reveal. Tomorrow I set up my new office. Tomorrow they will see the healing nature of how I arrange my space. Tomorrow they will see my family photo. Tomorrow begins the next phase of questions.

"Hey, who is that guy in the photo?"


  1. you have a way about you that draws loving and caring people to you. and though you may be alone on this journey, you, of all people i have met, will have a cheering section all along the way. i wish you peace.

  2. You have the ability to create Dan. I hope you use every bit of that ability to create a beautiful space that becomes a foundation, a zen like retreat, and an adequate reflection of the compassionate man within. Allow yourself to enjoy the new beginning...because nothing can take away your past. Love to you.

  3. My first thought was: they are so lucky to have Dan. Do they know how lucky they are. My second thought was that you would decorate the office with taste and it would be an oasis of calm - a sanctuary for peeps to talk. My third was: I hope there is a good central space in this building where peeps interact and meet/network/socialize/eat etc ... or Dan will start to get really sad (you know I mean aside of grieving for Michael), but if there isn't, it won't take long ... he'll soon get their buy-in to create a space where everyone can have informal meetings and mingle/network .... good luck for Day One. I love you xxxx

  4. I want to thank each of you for your loving thoughts. Well, Margo, you had it right. I got into work early on Friday, and quickly put things together. I used furniture from two vacant offices, brought in some of my own healing images, a water element, some light, fragrance for air, and brought down the intense lighting. I had every single person from the office coming to visit me. They heard about how beautiful, peaceful, and tranquil, my office was. It was so nice to have this feedback, and to have so many visitors. At the end of the day, one person came by to let me know that she would be relaxing in my office every afternoon. I welcomed her in, and let her know that as long as my door is open, so is my space. We began talking, she asked about the photo on my desk, and go to hear all about my kids, and Michael. I know that I have found a true friend in her.

    A nice beginning.