Rooted, I used to think.

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May-June - Monday, Jun. 13, 2022
Two Weeks In - Thursday, May. 26, 2022
The Time In-between Jobs - Friday, May. 06, 2022
The Sun Run - Sunday, Apr. 24, 2022
Change - Sunday, Apr. 17, 2022

Friday, Apr. 15, 2022 @ 9:25 pm
Job Interview

My phone rings. It's someone from the City.

I know what this is. It's going to be them asking for references before making an offer.

Rewind a week. I submitted my application for a position, with my four page resume attached to a straightforward and honest cover letter. A surge of adrenaline and thrill. Like swiping on Tinder while in a relationship.

The phone rings again.

"Hello, this is Shannon," I say. I've answered the phone this way since I was a child.

"Hi Shannon. This is Trina from the City. We'd like to move to the next stage and check your references."

They called me in for an interview shortly after I submitted my resume and cover letter.

"The team really wants to meet you. Can you come in tomorrow? There will be a test and a panel interview."

At first, I pushed them off until the next week. And then before the end of the phone call, I changed my mind and told them that I could come in at ten the next morning. My first job interview in nine years.

The test lasted two hours, and I wasn't able to finish it. I felt panicky and angry at the test and disappointed in myself. There was no way to prepare for it, so I felt cheated. After the test, they allowed me a bathroom break, during which I sat on the toilet, willing my nerves to calm and giving myself a pep talk.

Three minutes later, I walked into the boardroom for the interview. Three men in their forties, perhaps fifties. Is it always going to be like this? It's exhausting. At the same time, I'm so used to this that it's comforting and predictable.

The interview lasts ninety minutes. I ramble at length while answering their questions. I've become this person who can just talk and talk and talk, sharing stories and experiences. They furiously write as I answer their questions. I'm staring at the tops of their heads. I don't understand how this is a useful process.

Towards the end, they do engage in real conversation. I start to get a sense of things. They want me. A lot. I trust my ability to read a room. They are courting me. They're already referring to me in the present tense, as the person doing the role.

Later that evening, one of the interviewers calls. I am laying on top of my duvet in underwear and a bra, exhausted and anxious, laying in a sunbeam. I nearly don’t answer, but then at the last minute I pick up. We talk for a half hour, and I ask the questions that I had forgotten to ask. He sets me up to speak with two female engineers, apologizing for the lack of diversity on the panel.

I meet with the women the next day.

"They aren’t interviewing anyone else,” she discloses, “You interviewed well and your resume impressed them.”

She then tells me more about herself.

“I also worked in consulting for close to a decade. I don’t miss it. I think you’ll enjoy the improved work-life balance and having a bit more structure. We are still a busy department, though; you won’t be bored. People here are hard workers, most of us from a consulting background. The team that you’d be supervising is awesome. They are a keen group of kids.”

My emotions are all over the place. Mostly manic. Troubled with the decision, wanting to go for it and at the same time afraid of giving up what I’ve built for myself over the last nine years at my current company.

I’m tormenting myself.

Am I really going to turn down this opportunity?

Why am I so scared of doing this?

Roots | Shoots