April 3, 2017, felt like a regular Monday. Well actually it didn’t, I was supposed to be going in late to work due to a dentist appointment. I couldn’t help but notice the constant buzzing of my phone while I was getting dressed. My co-worker was calling me. Matter of fact, she had called me few times which was unusual for her. She was supposed to be at work. I knew something had to be wrong. Perhaps, she forgot her ID badge or wanted me to let the Supervisor know she would be late but…
“Hey Tahnee. They are laying off workers today. I just received my severance package and a notice that my position was eliminated. I’m not sure if you will be too, but I am just warning you.” she said. Her tone was disappointed but pretty calm.
I don’t really think my heart skipped a beat, but instantly my mind flashed to my kids. “2 kids, 1 job and no man”, is what ringed in my head. It is actually a line in a Jay Z song. This was so befitting to my current life, but now my one and only job could possibly be gone.
What the hell was I going to do if I got laid off? I thought to myself.
Luckily, due to many obstacles in my life, I have grown to have tough skin. As well as, developed a fearless chick persona. My thought process now is: no matter what, I got this!
Well, it happened. I was laid off. My strong work ethic and loyalty to the company was not enough to keep me employed. Fast forward today, I noticed something about my previous employer opposed to my new employer. Both established corporate companies, but the culture is noticeably different. My first week on the job there was an announcement that there would be a layoff. Obviously, this made me a little antsy and I had even questioned, what the hell I had gotten myself into. Yet, I couldn’t help but admire the compassion they had for their workers. At least they were honest enough to give their employees a fair warning and time to make a decision. My previous company walked me out the building like I was a criminal. There was no fair warning and a secured escort with a box of my personal belongings. A very humbling and embarrassing experience I might add.
When my manager spoke to me, honestly all I could hear was, “f*ck you and your kids, bye now”.
I could make this personal and name others who should have taken my spot. I could go on and on about how I didn’t deserve it, but I am not one to dwell in the past. I even hesitated about sharing this experience, but I felt it is huge part of my professional history. It was also a major wake up call that I must always secure the bag for my family. That is by never putting my stability solely in the hand of a corporate company. When it comes down to it, most of the time, hard-worker or not, you are just another replaceable number. It was clear that they honestly could care less where my kids meals come from. I was grateful for the health coverage, severance package and my savings. I was able to take off much needed time with my kids and reevaluate my professional path. Obviously, I re-entered the workforce, but I had a different agenda. It is a blessing to receive compensation, but it was still a task starting over and rebuilding after years with a company.
I’m not bitter at all though. This experience stretched me, educated me and built me to be a stronger woman for my new employer, but also helped to empower me to create a business of my own.
From a Mom with Experience.