For those of you that have been steady readers here at all things Ridiculous, you know that the last few years have been chock full of change for me. Personally, getting out of a toxic relationship with an alcoholic, moving to the Frontier, buying my own house, dealing with said house, deciding on That Grad School Thing, the plan for That Grad School Thing, the falling apart of That Grad School thing and the realization that what I thought I wanted…I did not. The understanding that my reasons for pursuing these goals, were no longer the driving force in my life. Finding a partner to share my life with. All of these things…
All of these things have been a portion of my journey, my quest as it were, to find the place where I can be of use in this world. There has been much gnashing of the teeth and pulling of the hair. But in the final analysis, I realized that I was searching for a particular place. I thought it might be a classroom…the traditional classroom that resides inside a school with a chalk board (dry erase/smart board/whatever) and a teachers lounge. I have discovered that I was thinking too small.
I began to really meditate on this place, and what I would do in it. It would be a place where I can affect change, where I can be of service, where I can leave a place better than I found it. There would be a call for my entire skill set. Those things I’ve learned on this quest. It would be able to fully integrate with my focus of helping women find their voice, promoting and developing programs that will facilitate the empowerment and personal growth of girls. Advocating for education and literacy. Maybe a puppet show thrown in for good measure. I would use the skills I learned onstage, back stage, on the road touring and directing and producing. The connections that I’ve made in the 8 years behind the chair, learning about my clients, investing and connecting with them on multiple levels, that comes naturally to me, but I know that it is also a skill.
I began to really pray about this a few months ago. I wrote to you about it after the comprehensive exam disaster and that blow to my plan and self confidence. I began to do what I always do…talk to my people.
As of Saturday, May 4th, I will officially terminate my position with Salon W, and with hairstyling completely. If you are one of my clients, please do not panic. I have a plan for you. I’ll get to it in a bit.
As of May 14th, I will begin my new position as a Community Development Executive for the Girl Scouts of Western Oklahoma, overseeing District 4 where I eventually will office. District 4 was initially a part time position. It became a full time position and was offered to me in place of the one I had initially interviewed for which would’ve covered my hometown, and surrounding counties. District 4, in a serendipitous twist of fate, includes Norman, Chickasha, Shawnee and surrounding cities and towns. I will office in OKC at first, but eventually will be moved to office out of Norman.
This is an exciting new opportunity for me that will include benefits such as health, vision, dental, retirement. I will work with a group of people who are committed to seeing this project through successfully, and are committed to helping develop strong, mindful and brave girls in this world. I cannot wait to join them.
The bittersweet portion of the program comes in saying goodbye to my faithful and beloved clients. I know that this is painful. I know that your first instinct will be, “but you can still do me, right?” and my instinct will be to say, “umm sure let’s just…”
But I’m not going to do that.
I have been working on this in my head for awhile now, and I know where I think you should land, and what stylist is going to work the best with you. We will connect and get that worked out. I know that you support me in this next chapter, and that means more than you can imagine.
Meanwhile, I’ve got two weeks in the salon. For those of you wishing to get in one last hurrah!!! LETS DO IT!!! Get on the phone, and get your time.
Change is always…a thing. Sometimes I do it well. Sometimes I am ever so reluctant. I have great faith in this next phase of my life. I have no idea where it is going to lead me…but I do have faith.
When you walk to the edge of all the light you have
and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown,
you must believe that one of two things will happen:
There will be something solid for you to stand upon,
or, you will be taught how to fly
© Patrick Overton
The Leaning Tree, 1975
Rebuilding the Front Porch of America, 1997