There's a tradition here that on the anniversary of your first day of work, you bring in as many pounds of M&Ms as the number of years you've worked. I had to approximate (turns out the medium bag is only 14 oz, so I added some truffles), but within minutes of announcing the presence of candy outside my office I'd received a few visits (from the true chocoholics) and several congratulatory emails.
It's a little mind-blowing to look back over the past year and think about how much has changed. I'm probably supposed to say something like "it went by so quickly!" or "wow, it's like I've always been here!" but somehow neither is appropriate. Some parts of the year went by quickly -- the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, for example, when I was scrambling to schedule meetings and reach milestones before everyone cleared out for the holidays -- but others, like the never-ending winter of nothing but rain for 6 months, ...well, they never seemed to end. Even now, as I take a break from a couple of large and less-than-thrilling projects to write this post from work (I'd normally be home by now, but my modem decided last Saturday that it didn't feel like working anymore and the cable guy can't come out until tomorrow so I'm taking advantage of the internet wherever I can get it), I can already tell that the 7 days between me and vacation will involve both mind-numbingly boring meetings and moments of panic when there aren't enough hours in the day to write decent web copy for 5 new pages. (Or 6. The number keeps growing.)
It might just be the fact that I'm sitting in my office as I write this, but the past year for me has been completely dominated by work. It'd be an understatement to say that my relationship with my job has been rocky -- I've gone from totally overwhelmed to madly in love with the Pacific Northwest (although I'll point out that that post had nothing to do with work) and back again in the space of a few weeks -- and at the moment I'm a couple of last-minute-bombshells-from-the-boss away from hitting another low point. But one thing I've learned in the past few months is that this is actually kind of normal. There are various remedies ranging from asking your boss to assign you to something that doesn't make you want to shoot yourself to looking for another position within the company (which at least a couple of my co-workers have chosen). Right now I'm sticking with the first option, and it's likely I'll start looking at other positions/departments next spring or early summer, which is totally normal at this point in my career.
Life outside of work has picked up, too, despite my fears of spending the rest of my existence friendless and lonely in Seattle. I've made some good friends at work (although I'm starting to see the downside of being close friends with workmates -- arguments make the hallways awkward), and between b-school classmates and friends of friends I've got a nice little network of people to hang out with. The rumors of single, attractive men swarming the streets of Seattle (and the halls of my office building) have largely proven false, but I haven't given up all hope just yet. It's a big city, and it's entirely possible that one of these friends of friends will turn out to be a good matchmaker.
So...yeah. I had all these plans to spend this post ruminating about the lessons I've learned in the year since I moved and all of the ways my life could have turned out differently (what if I'd turned this job down to keep trying for the CPG marketing job I so desparately wanted? What if I'd stuck with non-profit management like I planned going into business school? What if I'd gone to law school instead? What if I'd decided to stay in California for college?), but now I'm tired and will be hungry by the time I get home, and even if there's no internet in my apartment (*sob*) there's still a New Yorker to read and a sock that needs knitting and episodes of Firefly to watch (and you wonder why I'm single). So I'll leave you with a couple of pictures from the team birthday lunch I attended yesterday and be on my way.
And "workiversary" = work + anniversary. I'm trying to make it a thing. Help me out?
I really should've gotten this OR the BLT, not both.