Let Go

I suppose April 17th was bound to be one of those kind of days.

It was a Wednesday.

Wednesday meant I had a 9:00 class and 9:00 classes make for rushed mornings—with showers, breakfast, lunches, and school for the kiddo—and little time to do anything before class in an effort to get there with a few minutes to spare. So I was off to a difficult start.

When I opened my laptop to take attendance during my morning class it was was completely unresponsive. Just a black screen and a refusal to greet me with its warm comforting glow despite my efforts to revive it.

Shit. Shit. Shit.

Turns out I had a blown graphics processor and while I was able to retrieve my hard drive and get all of my holycrapIdidn’tbackthoseupyet files, my laptop was inoperable. Spectacular.

And because I now had no laptop, I missed an email regarding a meeting I needed to be at that afternoon.

A meeting that would make my broken laptop look like a broken fingernail.

I ended up in that meeting 2 hours after it was scheduled and it was there that I found out I was losing the job I had been at for nearly 13 years.

Fuck.

Needless to say my emotionally unstable self cried hard in that meeting. And after that meeting. And in front of my students at the class I had that evening.

It was ugly.

I was stunned. I had a feeling the meeting wasn’t going to be necessarily sunshine and unicorns but I was not expecting to lose my job and all that came with it like insurance for the kids, Josh, and myself.

I needed to process what just happened.

There was no way I could teach my class that night.

I’m so thankful that class was an upper-level course comprised of a small group of women that had me as an instructor multiple times in the past. When they saw me cry as I told them I would get them started in the lab but had to go due to a personal issue, they that didn’t look at me like I was some sort of freak. Instead they stood up one after another and hugged me.

That may have made it even harder.

For the last couple of weeks I’ve been finishing out the quarter knowing I would soon be unemployed from a job that was so much more than just a job. It was my career and the people within that institution had become family. I kept that my notice of unemployment to myself with the exception of a few family and friends. Sure, people knew—I was not the only one to find out that day they were getting laid off—and word travels fast but I chose not to publicly share my fate. I didn’t tell my students since finals week was just days away and I wanted them to keep their minds focused on the their present task at hand not my future.

May 3rd was my official last day.

I have no idea what is next.

I’m both exhilarated and terrified.

 

34 comments to Let Go

  • Sending prayers, a hug and good mojo your way

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thank you, Sara.

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  • I’m so sorry. Sendings lots of good vibes to you and yours.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Nanette.

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  • Catherine

    So sorry to hear this. :(

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    So was I, Catherine.

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  • Fred Davis

    I’m so sorry to hear this Holly. I know something positive will come from all of this because that is what happens to good people. I’ll be thinking of you and good luck. I do have an idea that a lot of professionals overlook in all of the confusion. For now keep the faith. Everything will be fine.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Fred. “Everything will be fine.” has sort of been my mantra since this happened. Does it suck? Yes. Will we be okay? Absolutely.

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  • Sorry to hear that , but not surprised anymore the way this country is being run, Good luck, God Bless, and just sometimes when one door slams shut another better one opens, hope that is your case , Peace , sending good vibes and Karma your way , Hope all works out for the best for all of you ,

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Dan. It’s sad to see how much the education sector has declined over the past few years. People just aren’t heading off to school as much as they were 5 years ago.

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  • Mike Driehorst

    Holly,
    That combination of being terrified and exhilarated is definitely strange (though the terrified can be overwhelming). You’ve done so much to help so many others, eventually, *this* will work out for the best.

    You just have to believe and have faith it will. (It still sucks until whatever the best is comes to fruition.)

    Will definitely keep my ears and eyes open for you.
    Good luck.
    -Mike

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thank you for the kind words, Mike. I appreciate it.

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  • Robert Nix

    I don’t know what to say or how to express how angry I am for you. I will keep a watchful eye open for opportunities and pray for you and yours. This just is not right….

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Robert.

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  • I would say exactly what Mike D said and add a cute little {{{hugs}} thingy too. You are such a talent in so many ways I don’t doubt for a second you will find something even better.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thank you, Erin. I’m really trying to embrace the reality that I do have talents that can be both rewarding and profitable in a way that I can sustain my family and our lifestyle.

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  • Holly, you are an awesome teacher and you became more than just a teacher. You are a mentor and a friend. Without you, and you pushing to get the best out of me, Nerdy Designs would not be where it is today and I want to thank you for that and being a great teacher, friend and mentor.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, John. You have no idea how much it means to me to hear that.

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    John Drake Reply:

    It is the truth Holly, I can hear your voice in my head when I am designing, or I think to myself what would Holly say about the use of negative space in this or my choice of fonts lol. I am really upset at Davis, and a degree is just a piece of paper, and I got the most important skills from Davis that future students will not get. I got taught by the best and those skills I learned from you Davis can’t take from me, or does it show in a degree from there. It is more than that and it shows in the work I do and my portfolio and I thank you for pushing me to be a better designer, even if at times I did not think I could be a good graphic designer and was strictly a web designer. So thank you for opening up my eyes and letting me see my artistic side open up and shine. I can never repay you for the skills and everything you have done for me, but know you mean the world to me for helping me build something special.

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  • Jackie B

    It really sucks. But keep your head up. I lost my teaching job from TPS in July of 2010 right after receiving my masters which would’ve gotten me a nice raise in the district. Unfortunately it made me too expensive to other districts and interview after interview I was looked over for candidates with no experience or advanced degrees like I held. I ended up throwing my cares to the wind and moving on a whim for a job here in Clearwater FL and its been the best opportunity so far in my life personally and professionally. Just keep your head up and know that everyone goes through these (unwanted at the time) life changes. It simply means you are needed somewhere else!

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    “It simply means you are needed somewhere else!”

    I like that. And right now the possibilities of that “somewhere else” are endless. :)

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  • I have been there and it’s so hard to have that come at you like that. I’m sorry you’re having to deal with this but you are an amazing person and I very much hope you find the right thing out there for you soon.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Brandy.

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  • Annette

    Holly, just read this. Massive, all encompassing hug. Don’t know what to say other than City Paper is looking for a graphic designer.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Hugs back my friend. I’m so thankful that our paths crossed during my time there. You are a gem.

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  • Kara

    Wow…I’m so sad to see you go. I’m proud that I was able to be your student for at least most of my 2 years there. You always did a great job and made the class fun. :( I never thought that this was what the problem was that night. You’ll find something better Holly, you’re an amazing designer.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Kara. My apologies for not being able to hold my shit together that night. I can just imagine what you ladies thought was going one. “Nobody died, right?” still runs through my head and makes me a smile a little at how genuinely concerned you all were.

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  • Ugh! :( I hope something even more amazing quickly comes your way.

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    Thanks, Poppy. I’m determined it will.

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  • Good luck with everything. I have been there a few times myself, and it always was for the better in the long run. I hope that is the case for you as well!

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    Holly {Artist Mother Teacher} Reply:

    The Universe works in mysterious ways.

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  • Holly, be strong, I have been there myself, you must remember that It’s always darkest before the dawn, take care.

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  • moniqua wilson

    Wow is all i can say. You pushed me from day 1 even though i sat in the back. But as the years went by u slowly got me to the front and brought out my creative side. Thanks for what u did for me at Davis. As talented ad you are, you will get something better. HELVETICA RULES !

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  • Everyhing its going alright.. :)

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