Some say that the holidays begin with Thanksgiving. I believe it starts with Halloween. Before the masks, costumes and candies were cleared from the shelves, Thanksgiving paraphernalia have already claimed their space. Before long, preparations for the holidays are underway. Fall cleaning starts with the steam cleaners out to clear out the summer's stains, the decor is changed to the warmer colors of autumn, and the cookbooks are dusted off in search of new recipes to try for the feasts.
All these preparations threw me for a loop this year especially since it also coincided with the upheaval at work. The company I worked for instituted a RIF (Reduction in Force) which felt more like a RIP. The acronym for reduction in personnel would have been more apt to describe what it felt like. It did feel like the rug was ripped from under me as my department was reduced to half as the company prepared for the next year's reorganization. Being ripped was apt for how I felt this past month.
But, life goes on, doesn't it? We do the best we can and push forward. So we go through the motions. I've cleaned out the office and the house but it still feels like something has been ripped out of me. This year, sadly, it feels eerily empty both literally and metaphorically. The holidays are underway regardless.