Nov 18, 2009

Intro by Molly Jackson

I first “met” Anna Labor after Lucy passed away. She sent me an email asking if I would like a portrait of Lucy drawn. Yes! I would love one. Who does that?? Although I am friends with Anna’s cousin, Renee, from my days in Los Angeles teaching at a performing arts academy, I had never heard of or had contact with Anna before our loss. She is young and has no children of her own—yet I’ve been amazed at the amount of love and support she has shown me. She is a talented artist and the portrait of Lucy she drew and framed (and sent for Christmas last year) is proudly displayed in our master bedroom. Peter and I say hello to it every morning.




“And give your dreams the wings to fly You have everything you need If you just believe”- Josh Groban, ‘Believe’

One of my favorite Christmas movies is ‘The Polar Express’. For many reasons. For one thing, I have the mind of an artist.  I admire animation with all of its detail.  This movie has by far the best animation. The characters look real. The set looks magical. Everything about it, in an artistic sense, is perfect.

Not only is the animation fantastic, the meaning and the message of the movie are wonderful.  I have always loved Christmas. Of course when I was little, I liked that Santa came down the chimney and left you tons of gifts. I’d still like to believe that- but I know it’s too commercial. I rather believe in the spirit of Christmas.


But, today, the word believe has another meaning in my mind. For the past two weeks my mood has been up and down, left and right. Losing a job, especially one you love is hard to grasp. The initial shock is jolting. This isn’t some part-time job I had on the weekends. It’s a job I had to establish myself. To make a name for myself as a designer and a person. This job was my first chance to prove that just because I am right out of college, I am worthy and I know what I am doing. I never felt judged there.

I feel most college graduates are judged right from the beginning. We’re “entry level” therefore, in some peoples minds, we have no clue what we’re doing. But, at this company, I finally didn’t feel that way. This boss gave me that extra time to show my portfolio and I got to represent myself as both a designer and as a person. I was hired three days after my interview. I learned more than I expected. I made mistakes but they saw I was human and mistakes happen. But, all in all, I was doing what I loved to do. I was hired January 16th, 2009. Yes, I remember the date because that day, a small part of my dream became a reality. I spent nine months job searching, networking, job searching, interviewing, reaching out, oh and did I mention job searching? Finally, I got my break. Even through the minor depression and wondering, I still believed. I believed that doors close because another opens and it opens for a certain reason.

 I was laid off August 19th, 2009-- Through no fault of my own. But, the economy bit the company I worked for in the butt. And, it bit me in the butt. I went into that day with no fear. I left with a huge weight of fear, angst and worry. I couldn’t help but think, “the world has ended”. Finances came rushing in. No, I’m not on my own and thank God for that. But I still pay bills that I don’t want on my parent’s shoulders. I’m 22. I can be responsible. And being fired wasn’t entirely about finances.  As my boss was sharing the horrible news, I kept thinking, “Are you kidding me!?! I’m at square one AGAIN?!?” FOR THE THIRD TIME SINCE MOVING HERE!

 In ONE day, a lot of things came crashing down. It took nine months to get a job; it took one day to lose it. I don’t want to go back to who I was last summer. Not the depressed, sad Anna that I was.

So, with the thinking and obviously the worrying, I’ve finally decided that instead of being mad and upset, just do one thing. And, one thing only. This will carry me through this path that leads to the door that is open because the other one closed. Believe. Believe that I will be ok. Believe that something great is waiting for me. Believe that God knows of this and He knows where I belong. And, believe that, in His mind, I have learned what I was meant to at that company. My purpose there is complete. Move on. Follow the path. Believe. Believe. Believe.

I’m a 22 year old who is trying to prove myself and find my place. This isn’t the first job that I’ve lost. The economy has bit me in the butt 2 other times but I was a temp at those jobs. It’s still rough but I wasn’t attached to those jobs like I was with this most recent one.

“Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.” -The Polar Express




Danielle Barnosky on 11/19/2009
I like this a lot... Anna, you've gone through a lot and you've in turn helped me when i lost the job i loved...

Shara J Harper on 11/22/2009
Beautiful! Thank you for sharing your story. Hope you find the perfect job to use your awesome talents!

Sue Anderson on 11/24/2009
You are obviously a very talented person, and I do BELIEVE you will get the job you that will last!

Joy on 12/07/2009
Anna, thank you for sharing your story. There are many reasons people grieve and I appreciate this site for helping us all connect in that shared human experience. I hope you find that "open door" and that it is better than you could have imagined.

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