Thoughts on books, family, and life in one impressive package.

The Sunday Salon

What a week. I, for one, am so thankful that it is over, and a new week is beginning. Given the fact that we are in the height of the fall activities season and barely have a moment to breath, that is saying something.

It was the week of bad news. For those of you who were able to read between the very vague lines, yes, I did apply for the vacancy left by my former manager. Monday, I found out that while I impressed everyone during all of my interviews and they absolutely loved all of my ideas – so much so that they are adopting almost all of them – I was not their top candidate for the role. Not only that, but I was never really a candidate for the role. I advanced in the interview process because they were so surprised at my application and my ideas that HR wanted everyone to hear what I had to say. On top of being told this, I was also informed that they have not even conducted a final interview with their top candidate but they plan to present him with an offer just the same. Oh, and my potential new manager is a man. While this seems like an odd statement to make, I work in an office of roughly 200 people. It is the company’s global headquarters, so we have the entire executive board and all of upper management. There is only one female in an upper management position, but she is not at the executive level. We only have three female managers in the entire building. I struggle with the male dominance of this company and have really struggled since I was told I was never a true candidate…even though I am now on my second month of doing the job. Yes, I am still bitter, and I honestly do not know what I am going to do about it. In the meantime, I go to work with a smile on my face and still give 110 percent because that is who I am and what I do.

The second piece of bad news is the stunning fact that my father is undergoing hip replacement surgery tomorrow. I say stunning because I had no idea he was at that point. I didn’t even know he was in that much pain to warrant such a procedure. It is always nerve-wracking when a parent undergoes surgery, and the fact that I cannot be there for my father – thanks to the no boss and having to close the month by myself – is making the situation even worse for me.

To top off the week, one of my two remaining coworkers gave her notice on Friday. We lose her in two weeks, and as one would guess, in the world of Finance, where certain roles are strictly separated, I am this coworker’s sole back-up. I am not surprised that she is leaving; she is a friend, and I’ve known that she has been sending out her resume for the past few months. In fact, she goes with my blessing to a better job in a field she much prefers doing what she wants to do. Still…that will be the third person we’ve lost in the department since June and even more duties I will have to add to my extremely long list. I am trying not to think about what this means, but there is a part of me that wonders just how much more I can take before I crack under the strain. I can only take things one day at a time, and that is what I am doing right now.

In the meantime, the kids and Jim keep chugging along with their own activities. Connor is having a rough year in cross-country. He’s frustrated at his lack of improvement, and it is so painful to watch him struggle to do something he truly does love. His marching band experience is proving a double-edged sword this year as well. He still loves everything about it, but the band itself is not quite as polished this year as it was last year. The very large freshman class has not quite succeeded at learning the keys to marching band, and the much smaller group of experienced members can only do so much to help. As the competition season starts in earnest today, I know he both dreads it and looks forward to it. School-wise, he has settled into a much better routine. Jim and I were both very worried about his extremely late hours and problems finishing his homework. The last few weeks have seen him go to bed at a decent hour in addition to finishing everything. This is one trend I hope continues for the rest of the year.

Holly, so far, seems to be okay with her schedule. Wednesdays and Thursdays, when she has multiple classes, are physically exhausting for her; she can barely stay awake on the ride home. However, she loves every minute of it, and if we thought she danced around the house a lot before, it is nothing to what she does these days. She doesn’t move without performing one dance move or another. The saving grace is that her homework load has been light, easily completed in the evenings before dance or even in the mornings before school. Her grades continue to shine, and we will continue to watch her closely for burnout and/or a drop in academic performance.

Jim is doing well. He’s been a tremendous help picking up the taxi cab duties with the kids while I work late. Work keeps him busy and challenged, and he absolutely loves it. I love seeing his enthusiasm for his coworkers, his employees, and for his job. It is such a breath of fresh air!

It may be Sunday, but there is no rest in the Shannon household. Connor is heading to the season’s first marching band competition, while Holly performs in the annual Irish Fest this afternoon. She also performed at a CD release party on Thursday during the opening festivities, so her Irish dancing skills are getting quite a workout this year! It’s soup weather, so I’m hoping I can squeeze in some time to make some sort of soup today as well. However, at this rate, I will be lucky to just get to the grocery store. ‘Tis the season for time management!

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Here’s to everyone having a great Sunday and an even better week!

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