I finally landed the job I’d been waiting for. But would it last?
by- Posted on Jul 7, 2014
I stared into my piping hot plate of lo mein and poked at the greasy noodles with my chopsticks. My two kids and I were here at Lung Wah, our favorite Chinese restaurant, to celebrate my new job as a secretary with Allstate–but I didn’t have much of an appetite. What if my good fortune was too good to be true? “Congrats, Mom!” my teenage daughter Lydia cheered, toasting to my success with her glass of water. “We’re so proud of you,” said Landon, my youngest.
I smiled uneasily and clinked my glass against theirs. I’d been searching for a job for so long, so why didn’t I feel relieved? You’re in good hands, the insurance company’s well-known slogan goes. I wished I felt that secure, but I couldn’t, not after how my last job ended. Lord, I prayed, calm my fears.
I’d been the receptionist at a chiropractor's office for over four years, and I considered my co-workers and bosses to be friends, almost family. Then the recession hit, and business slowed down. The office couldn’t keep multiple receptionists. I never thought I’d be the one to be let go. They knew I had two kids to support. The move blindsided me.
I pored over the want ads, hunting for another position. One I could count on. Three months later, the Allstate ad caught my eye. A branch near my house was looking for someone local (check) with secretarial experience (check) who could work flexible hours (check!). I applied right away, fingers crossed.
The boss at the agency called back the next day and invited me in for an interview. I liked him, he liked me, and after a second interview they offered me the job. I accepted. It seemed like the perfect fit—but I couldn’t let go of what had happened at the chiropractor’s office. How long would my new job last? What if I was let go again, out of the blue?
I forced down my dinner, not wanting the kids to sense anything wrong. Finally the waitress came by for our plates. “Thank you, come again!” she said, dropping the check and three golden fortune cookies onto the table. Lydia and Landon reached for theirs. I cracked mine open and removed the little slip of paper… and started laughing.
“What’s yours say, Mom?” Lydia asked.
I smiled. “You are in good hands.”