Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Turn, turn.

Life has a strange way of shifting. One could call it perspective, or even more specifically, focus, but in the end it all comes back to our own personal view of events and the story we live externally out to others and internally to ourselves.

I have undergone this shifting on many different fronts the last few months. More than likely it has been a series of events and circumstances that has shaped my growth and maturing as a person, but the present and not too distant past leaps more easily to mind.

I shared that I took a break from my patterns and life for a while, to focus and concentrate on who I am, the things I have done and who I am becoming. Some in my life were alarmed at that and others waited, somewhat amused I might add, to see what this break might have in store for me. I could attempt to go into great detail about the myriad of choices, events and emotions that transpired over this time, but that would muddle the waters further about what I am trying to say here today.

As of Friday morning, my break will have ended. Life has come full circle in some ways and I am the most surprised at it all. Through a series of what appeared to be random events I find myself going back to the place I found myself most happy and content. During Pride this last month, I happened to run into Chef Kyle and his extended family at the concert and events we were attending. He was there with his Mom and Dad, as well as his girlfriend, and they had come out to support his younger brother and boyfriend as a family. My friends and I were wandering through the tents and displays when I heard someone shout my name. I turned to find him and his group and I spent some time talking to him and catching up on life. He asked as to how I was doing and what I was filling my time with. I answered in a vague way but he was rather direct. He told me that when my life had settled down, to give him a call and he would be incredibly happy to put me back to work at the Marriott.

Fast forward to this week. I called Bill, my GM at the hotel and conference center and asked to speak with him. We set up an appointment and I came in to talk to him and bring him up to date on all that had transpired since last December. For those not familiar, it was a trying time in my life. Michael, my (I have no idea what label to use here) made a series of choices that culminated in me saving his life, and I was dealing with the aftermath and fall out of those events. When someone you love struggles, everyone hurts and no one is immune to pain. I learned that the choices we make effect so many more people than just ourselves. It is a story I still am not ready to talk about, not even here, but it ends with him currently healthy and well, back to life and work and me single and pursuing my own version of success.

I talked to Bill frankly about this all. He has known me since High School and has been my boss since I started waiting tables at the Stadium Club and on the Plaza. I filled him in on the details and explained where I was at my new job, the goals I had personally with my career, the reasons for my departure last year and my encounter with Kyle, his Executive Chef. We talked about my past performance and he had nothing but good things to say of me and expressed his desire, and the management groups interest in having me back. He let me know he would talk to HR and our VP of Operations on my behalf and contact me with further details.

In short, Chef Kyle called me yesterday and let me know they had my position and place open for me. I accepted, enthusiastically and happily! I feel like I am going home. I have missed my kitchen, my friends and coworkers and the challenges and adventures that the job brought me. I know it sounds crazy, without all the details, but I find myself right back where I started, after a detour through life, love and experience and I have to confess. I am excited. I contacted my current employer and let them know of my decision and to my surprise, they understood and wished me the best of luck. My boss there expressed the sentiment that they knew they would not be able to keep me long. The opportunities and challenges that I thrive on were just not present and we all could see that, even if I was loathe to admit it.

I know my life doesn't make a lot of sense to others. Sometimes the choices I make are confusing and baffling to the friends and family that love and care for me. Life throws us all curves and I usually do not react in the ways others expect or would. I tend to take drastic and decisive action when others would recommend caution and contemplation. I have found, for whatever reason, that it always works out, for me, sometimes in the ways we least expect it to. It has been a strange series of interesting events but I know I have learned a lot through it all, about myself, about others and about the people in my life who love me for exactly who I am.

So here I am again, up early and ready to tackle a new old adventure. A fresh hair cut, vigorous shower and pot of coffee have my day started out right and I have my happy back. Nothing is at it was but things are as they should be. I have no illusions about easy success. This growing up and maturing process is just as baffling as it always has been, but I have learned something. We all need each other, eventually. It is never wrong to ask for help. If we could do it on our own, all the time, we would miss out on all the sharing of life and love with one another. I am thankful for the time I spent away from it all. I am also glad to be back.



  1. You sound like Gandalf talikng to Frodo in the Moria ;)

    Btw, I loved what Gandalf said to Frodo in the Moria!

  2. JF,

    Were you speaking of this exchange in the movie?

    Frodo: "It's a pity Bilbo didn't kill him when he had the chance!"

    Gandalf: "Pity? It was pity that stayed Bilbo's hand. Many that live deserve death, and some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them, Frodo?
    Do not be too eager to deal out death in judgment. Even the very wise can not see all ends. My heart tells me that Gollum has some part to play yet, for good or evil before this is over.
    The pity of Bilbo may rule the fate of many."

    Frodo: "I wish the Ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened."

    Gandalf: "So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil. Bilbo was meant to find the Ring, in which case you also were meant to have it. And that is an encouraging thought."

    If gives me even more to think about.


  3. Yes, that whole speech was just great! But I think more specifically to this part: "All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us". That's actually my best line of the whole trilogy.

    It's not necessary WHAT you wrote that made me think of that, but THE SPIRIT behind it... It seems to be the same spirit. So... I don't know what you're going to think about it... I hope nothing bad. As I said, it was the similar wisdom that hit me.

  4. Hmm. That is exactly what I have been pondering and deciding lately, intentionally and hopefully successfully. Being present and acting instead of living passively and in reaction to events. I like it, though it takes a lot more effort. The end results are vastly different.