Reversal of Fortune by Cerridwyn Tiponi

She lazily rolled over to her back and started rubbing her eyes. The bedside clock with its bright red number display read 8:30 a.m. Her partner had vacated his side of the bed several hours before, leaving it available for her to stretch out over the entire bed. Although the curtains were still drawn, she knew by the light filtering through the sides it was morning, albeit a grey, cold morning. What a way to start a Monday morning! She pulled the duvet higher, almost under her chin, in trying to stay warm. As she lay there, her mind started ticking over, making numerous lists which rarely were completed. What was she going to do today? It was the same question she’d been asking herself every day for the last year.

She let her mind wandered to what life was like then. She’d had a great job working in the financial services industry. She’d worked her way up to her current position through sheer determination. Granted, she was no dumb cookie. Educated, talented and ambitious gave her every right to earn the six figure salary she had received. Sure, it was stressful most of the time, but it wasn’t anything she wasn’t accustomed. It was a job filled with deadlines and she knew how to meet them head on. She’d been with the firm for over 10 years, yet now she had nothing. It was gone in the blink of an eye. Riding high one day only to find she’d been thrown to the curb the next. She felt so low, lost and afraid. What was she to do? She was one of those women whose career defined them.

At first, she had loads of confidence in her ability to join the gainfully employed again. However, with each rejection, her self-esteem started to waver, and as each day rolled into the next, she started doubting herself even more. What a vicious cycle everything turned out to be? Was there no end? Hadn’t she hit the bottom yet and when would her life start turning around? Her partner kept assuring her she was highly talented and everyone was foolish if they didn’t hire her on the spot. She smiled at his enthusiasm, secretly worrying that he might be wrong. And here she was one year later, still unemployed with little to no prospects on the horizon. What now?

She’d settled her mind back to her original question…what was she going to do today? There was only so much dusting and shopping a person could do. She’d learned quickly to stagger chores or errands to ward off boredom, but even that never seemed to satisfy her. As she willed herself to crawl out of bed, the phone rang. She darted across the room and answered it.

“Hello?” she queried.

“Good Morning. This is Mary from the HR department at Burroughs & Keefe. I’m calling for Ms. Smyth.” the voice on the other end informed.

“This is she.” she replied, her heart beginning to beat fast.

“Congratulations. You have the job.”

She couldn’t believe it. She’d only interviewed last week with this firm. Maybe her partner was right, maybe she was that good. “Thank you. When do you need me to start?”

“We do need you to start tomorrow. I’m sorry about the short notice. However, would it be possible for you to stop in today to fill out some paperwork? This way you can jump right into the new position.” the caller stated.

“That’s perfectly fine. I could be there in an hour or so. See you then.” She was speechless. They wanted her to start the following day.

“Wonderful. I’m looking forward to meeting with you shortly. I’ll leave word at reception to expect you. Good bye.”

The call ended and she stood there looking at the phone for a moment. She couldn’t wrap her head around what had just happened. It really was a reversal of fortune…again.

(C) Cerridwyn Tiponi


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