Today I gathered all of my tea cups, tea tins, tea filters and other miscellanea that make an office space a home, and packed up my office cube. I will no longer switch on the overhead light every morning first thing when I get in for the day. I switch on the overhead lamp, start up the computer, and immediately take the tea bag out of my tea cup because the walk to the lobby and elevator ride is plenty of time for the green tea to complete the brewing cycle. I will miss the Zen and Now green tea from the coffee shop four doors down from our office. Though I won’t miss that they consistently use water that is far too hot for green tea, but I still supported them because I liked starting my day in that ramshackle, yet friendly shop with the door handle that does not work well and requires you to bump the door open with your hip as you push down on the door handle.
I will no longer have morning chit-chats with our secretary who is also my dear friend. Every morning I would say to her, “Good morning, chica!” For my last day today she bought me my Zen and Now green tea, and left me a beautiful fuchsia vase of flowers on my desk.
My colleague and I will no longer go to the pizza dive for lunch where we typically clean them out of all the remaining slices of buffalo chicken pizza they have on hand. I will no longer confuse my colleague with my mangled silly Spanglish utterances such as my famous “Como que what?!” He has since started using my Spanglish with his family on occasion. There could be worse legacies.
My colleague and I made a trip out to my car with my stuff, and when I opened the trunk of my car I realized that I still had tea cups and other assorted stuff from the last time I switched jobs. I looked at the old stuff, and realized that boxes of stuff from a departed job are hard for me to contend with. These boxes are big ol’ Boxes of Goodbye for me. I came home, looked around, and realized that I have such boxes squirreled away all over the place: other boxes from past departed jobs, boxes from ex-boyfriends and ex-partners – all of which are unopened and discarded on the road of constant change in life.
I have to trust that this ending is a right and good decision. This ending brings a new beginning, a beginning that I sought out and earned, and now that I have it in my hands it takes my breath away and scares me a little.
This is what I want. I want this beginning.
Eyes wide open, heart wide open, I move forward to a new beginning. But this time, today’s Box of Goodbye is tomorrow’s Box of Beginning.