Certain Gifts

by: Joanne Meehl

The technical marketing manager came to the weekly job search networking group late, unusual for him but a common occurrence with members having interviews, so I assumed that's what it was and didn't think much of it.

Later, during a break between networking activities, he pulled me aside to apologize. Almost everyone in the group, which changes somewhat with every meeting, is incredibly polite this way. Being without a job is humbling in many ways. "I'm so sorry I came in late", he began. "But I thought saving a dog's life was a valid reason for being late!", he said, breaking into a proud grin.

Saved a dog's life? "Yes, our neighbor's dog ran out on the ice in a nearby pond, and she fell through. I thought she might be able to get out, but after three attempts, I saw she couldn't. I saw her, so I carefully inched my way out on the ice and grabbed her." On that cold morning, the dog certainly would have died if he hadn't seen her out there struggling.

It's funny how things work: if he'd been working, he never would have seen her and she would have died, and no one would have found her, and her family would have been in agony, putting up posters and calling the pound.

To save the life of a dog, a family member. In the grand scheme of things, if there is such a design, could this be the reason for his layoff? Or the reason he decided to attend the networking group that morning, which he wouldn't have done had he not been laid off?

Sometimes even painful things are gifts.


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