I brought home the certificates that hung on the bulletin board behind my desk: Dynamic Facilitation Skills for Participative Leadership, Completion of Certificate Program in Software Product Management, JAD Facilitation, Defining & Validating Software Requirements. And a paper mache mask my younger son James made in the 7th grade as an art project (he's now 31).
And an essay I read often. I don't know who wrote it, but it's about happiness. The last lines are
Happiness is a journey, not a destination.
Work like you don't need money.
Love like you've never been hurt, and
Dance like no one's watching.
Art is going to patch the paper mache mask - it's a little worn after 20 years on a cubicle wall - and we'll hang it on the wall by my desk. James will probably be embarrassed to see I've kept it. Or maybe not.
It occurs to me that my workplace skills are transferrable in the wider world: facilitation, mediation, analysis, communication, training. I might be short changing myself if I decided not to use them at all, ever. So I'll remember how to do those things in case I need them again!
I'm a little nervous tonight. My back went out last week, and though it's getting better I decided against going to a restorative yoga class. Instead, I'm sitting in my quiet house thinking about writing - a solitary activity after 20 years in a cubicle. I think I'll feel more like myself when I've finished off tomorrow's four hours.
Tonight I'm waiting for tomorrow.