The emails kept coming in. I tried to reply to them as soon as they arrived, but just as I’d press ‘send’ to one, another two or three would land in my inbox.
“Congratulations!!!” they’d say.
“Thank you!!!” I’d reply.
“You deserve it!” they’d cheer.
“I am so excited, thank you 🙂 “ I’d respond.
“Well earned, Tracey!”
“Thank you, I’m thrilled!”
“Will you still be supporting New Boss #1?”
“Nope, I won’t be supporting anybody 🙂 “
“That’s so great!”
“No one sent out a notice when I changed roles. #IGotGypped.”
“Dude. Come on.”
“So. Freakin. Awesome. Can’t wait for you to start!”
“WILL YOU STILL BE PRESIDENT OF THE FUN COMMITTEE.”
I was smiling so hard, my cheeks were aching.
When New Boss #1 had called me into her office two weeks prior, it was not to take away my new responsibilities as I’d feared. It was to tell me that there was an opening to take on the role full time. Would I be interested?
WOULD I BE INTERESTED???
The time that followed was torturous. I had to go through all the proper channels of course, send in my resume and officially apply for the job, interview, and then the role had to be posted publicly for a certain amount of time. And then I just had to wait.
But finally, it came through. And New Boss #1 called me into her office, gave me a hug and welcomed me to the team.
I’d immediately called my Dad and his wife, and then my Mom. We were all a bit weepy and speechless. To be honest, I think we’ll all be in shock for some time.
After New Boss #1 sent out the notification of my promotion, the response was overwhelming. People wrote in from our offices all across the country. Some I knew well, some I did not. I saved all the notes in a file in my inbox because I was just so touched. They seemed genuinely happy for me.
My co-worker, Steve, appeared at my cube. “Nice job, Shirt Twin,” he said and held up his hand. We call each other ‘Shirt Twin’ because we have the same pale blue plaid shirt that occasionally (unplanned) we’ll wear on the same day. We’ll then ask Emily to take our picture and then send it to the team who manages our company Facebook page with a request that they post it. They haven’t yet.
But we’ll keep trying.
I slapped my hand into his.
“Now see?” he said. “No mistaking what that means. Hand raised equals a high-five. That’s your safest bet. Nothing ambiguous about that.”
“Right,” I laughed.
He was making fun of me because earlier in the day, before the official announcement had been made, I’d told him how I’d been walking by the CEO’s office and he’d called me in to congratulate me. He’d stood up and taken a step towards me. I’d only noticed a fraction of a second too late that he had his hand held out to shake mine. I’d been moving in for a hug so then we did that awkward back and forth dance where then I’d put my hand out too but he’d seen I was going in and moved towards me and then neither of us knew what to do. So finally I just jumped in and hugged him.
Which was probably inappropriate on my part.
That evening, in a perfect coincidence, I had plans to meet my friend Bea for Happy Hour. She had also recently been promoted and so we happily chatted about our new positions. During our conversation, she mentioned that she’d just traveled to Dallas and how there was a new airline that made that route. I found myself asking detailed questions about it, thinking “Oh! My bosses always go to Dallas! I’ll have to look into this!”
Then I remembered that wasn’t my job anymore.
Later that night, when I returned home, I scrolled through my phone to find more well-wishes from my co-workers and a note from New Boss #1 saying that people had been stopping by her office to tell her how smart she was to give me this role. And how excited she was for me.
I shook my head in disbelief.
And as I sang along with Katy and pulled off my sandals, I realized, for the first time in a long, long time, I did not feel lonely. I did not regret that I didn’t have someone waiting at home for me to celebrate with.
My co-workers, friends and family had given me enough.
I’m not sure why New Boss #1 decided to take a chance on me. I can only assume it was that someone from The Team or my friends in the other offices or maybe even someone here in the NY office – someone, somewhere told her I could be trusted to do more. And because of that, my life has been changed. So whoever that was – thank you.
I still don’t think it would be in my best interest to say what I will now be doing, but I will say this:
As of 6/30/2014, I am no longer an Assistant.