Today was the first day at my new job. And while the majority of the day was spent going over corporate policies and benefits ( … yawn … ), I was rather excited. Especially since at the end of the day, I was able to meet the majority of the Case Managers within the department I’ll be working in.

But today’s post is really about another day. This is about last Wednesday; New Year’s Eve. It’s strange that the last day of 2008 also happened to be the last day at my old job.

It was bittersweet kind of day. After all, I spent 9 years of my life there. I’ve made great connections; wonderful friends, some of which have become more like family than just friends.

I also learned a lot about my professional self over those years. And I learned a lot about what kind of supervisor I wanted to be in this latest career move by witnessing the actions of those leaders I very much respected.

It should have been no surprise that I spent the last three working days I had left cleaning out my desk and packing my personal belongings. After all, there was 9 years worth of out-of date job aids, projects, and resource manuals that needed to be chucked. And being the pack rat I am, I’ve managed to collect many little chotski’s over the years; small stuffed animals, little ceramic figurines and a slew of holiday coffee mugs. Ugh … we won’t even go over all the pens from various vendors I dumped into the general supply cabinet.

You see … as a pack rat, I have this tendency to attach certain memories with certain objects. And because of that, it makes it difficult for me to throw anything things away. But since not only am I changing jobs but location as well, I know I have to get rid of these sentimental-yet-not-useful items.

My solution to this office dilemma I faced? Well rather than throwing these items away, I started to “give back” some of those memories or “will” these items to my other coworkers who may just have a “need” for them.

A few of the things I left behind were:

  • A little handmade felt tie with yellow felt “cheese” made specifically for one of our “Who Moved My Cheese” presentation to one of our supervisors who worked directly with me back when I was supervisor the first time around.
  • A ceramic Meiko Cat figurine (which symbolizes good luck and fortune) to coworker who loves to travel to exotic places.
  • A plastic purple Princess Crown to coworker we’ve all dubbed “The Queen” or “Your Majesty.”

In addition, I left some other general random things around the department for others to “discover” in my absence. For instance, I left a Buckingham Fountain Poster (given to me by another coworker, who has since long left the company) on the department bulletin board with arrow pointing to which building to come visit me when in the area. And I left a small inflatable “punching bag” on our “humor cart” for people to punch whenever they got stressed out.

Why did I do this other than the fact that I was getting rid of pieces that I no longer had to pack? Well, as I left these items around the department,  I realized that I was doing this to leave random bits of myself all around the office. The same office that I’ve lived and breathed in over the past 9 years. The very same one that kept me waking up every morning … especially during the darkest parts of my IF journey … just so I’d have some sort of purpose in my life.

As frustrating as I’ve felt during certain periods in our company’s history … I know I will miss this place. And all the people I’ve considered my family over the past 9 years.