The Conductor’s Pause


It is 7:49 on the first Monday after the 4th of July hoopla. It feels especially quiet down here by the ocean’s edge on a rocky beach, which brings a slight relief of a breeze to a streak of hot humid days. It has been seven months since I left my job at Massachusetts General Hospital, where I worked on and off for 20 years. Graduation has come and gone, and now is what I think the speakers refer to as Commencement. It is the beginning of a new chapter, as so many of them say.

I am clearly in the beginning of a new chapter.  It is hard not to like this space of peaceful nothingness. It feels like the first time I have ever experienced summer as summer. I wear sandals and sneakers most of the time. I gave away all of my work clothes. I actually shop for groceries and plan meals. I take my dogs swimming in the ocean and I don’t worry about missing trains.

It is in between jobs-not retirement. I am actively looking for work-but nothing seems clear. I have had far more rejections than interviews, and for the first time in my life-the path seems to be ever diverging. My friend Susan calls this period of time a “conductor’s pause’-a point at which the conductor creates a pause, often as directives for specific actions.

I am going to try and be actively engaged in the conductor’s pause, and enjoy the summer for its own sake. All of this, while casting nets to see what lies ahead-which path to take or not take.  To write, and write some more, to do that which scares me and make time to be with people that I love. Meanwhile, if you hear of any jobs-let me know!

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One Response to The Conductor’s Pause

  1. Barb says:

    Conductor’s pause is wonderful phrasing. You are thinking, evaluating and consolidating all your thoughts before the next section……

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