• Han

Redundant & covered in frosting

Dear diary,

I’m COVERED in cream cheese frosting, have an inflatable crown on and tears running down my face while listening to Glasgow Love Theme by Craig Armstrong. This is when I realised that my stress levels have hit an all time high. 

This past week I’ve been wading through treacle, everything has felt like such a struggle (apart from a super cute date I went on but I’ll tell you more about that if it amounts to anything). I don’t think I have cried this much in a long time. Ok, that’s a lie, I cry literally all the time. What I’m trying to get at, is that I’m emotional - OK! 

Wednesday, I woke up with a horrible migraine so I decided to work from home, I am VERY lucky that I’m able to do this, if I couldn’t I wouldn’t be able to hold a job. To set the scene of what working from home with a migraine looks like, with my migraine cap over my head, a wheat bad on my neck and sunglasses on to finish this stylish look. 

A call gets put in my calendar for 13:30pm with a Partner. I tell myself I’ll work until the call and then log off for the afternoon if the migraine persists.

**I have changed the names so that my colleagues remain anonymous**

A message pops up on my laptop..

Sam: Oo, I wonder what this call is about. 

Han: Yeah - not sure, it’s very last min. 

Sam: Only a couple more hours until we find out I guess. 

At my company, we are currently going under a big restructure, which has meant that a lot of my colleagues have been made redundant. However, I was assured that my team would be safe back in September. 

I sent an email to my manager.

Bill, Do you know what this call is about with Charlie at 13:30pm? Given the discussions we had back in Sept and the current restructuring, this is causing the team, and myself some distress

Bill's reply: I imagine that’s what this is about. I know as much as you, so I’ll dial in. 

It was as if time stood still waiting for 13:30pm. I dial in, the Partner says that he has to read off a script due to legal reasons and my heart sank. At that moment I knew, it was not good news. We had been made redundant. They’re offshoring my whole team to India. We had not been given an opportunity to ask questions as, as soon as we heard the news, he ended the call. Well, isn’t that just kick-you-in-the-crotch, spit-on-your-neck fantastic?


I log off before I start to get sassy with emails. I just sobbed and sobbed and sobbed the whole day and night. Which did wonders for my migraine - NAAAT.

So many questions were keeping me up into the early hours of the next morning: Will I get another job? What redundancy package will I get? What will my team do? Are they ok? Will another company understand my migraines? Could I have done something different? Am I dreaming?! WTF?!?!

I’ve been walking around with a cloud, as grey as smoke, looming over me. I feel like everyone around me is giving me that sympathy look. You know the one where they tilt their head and put their bottom lip out?


I FaceTimed my G’ma to tell her the news.


Han: "Hi Grandma, How’re you?"

G’ma: "Hi love, oooo let me just turn down the T.V, I’m watching James Bond, it’s really good you know.. (sorry, you’re watching what now G’ma). I’m ok love, how’re you?"

Han: "Well, I could be better actually Grandma, I’ve received the news that I’m being made redundant. They’re offshoring my team to India." 

G'ma: "Oh, oooooo dear. Ooooo nooooo. (It goes on). Well, oh I am sorry love. Is Maria’s job safe? Well, how can they move it there, do you have to move there? (Oh this is going to be more painful than I envisioned)"

Han: "Yes, Maria works in a completely different department to me." 

G’ma: "Oh good. (Oh good, oh yeah! As long as her job is safe that’s tickadeeboo) Anyway, how was your date last night?"

Han: "How did you know that I had a date?"

G’ma: "Your mum told me."

Han: "Oh, yeah really nice thank you." 

G’ma: "Oh good, well in any case, if the date went well I suppose you won’t need to be looking for another job. You need to be popping babies out Han, you’re not getting any younger (kick a gal when she’s down why don’t ya)"

Han: **pauses to compose oneself** "Grandma, we’ve been through this, women have babies a lot later now. In any case, we don’t need to worry about that AFTER A FIRST DATE. I want to be married first anyway."

G’ma: "Oh yes, definitely get married first Hannah, definitely. Because your sister isn’t married is she, I hope she’s repented!!" (How, HOW did this conversation turn in to me being told I need to have a baby and that my sis needs to repent for her ’sins’?!).

Between that and dad asking me every ten minutes: “Have you applied for jobs yet? What is it that you do? What else have work said? What have your colleagues said?" and sending me jobs that are not remotely anything to do with my profession “ooh love, there is a job for a data analyst, that’s what you do isn’t it? I’ll send it over to you so you can apply now." Or “Han, what you need to do is get yourself a job on the trains, because you get free travel then!” I feel like I’m about to have a meltdown.


In their own little way, I know they’re only trying to help, god love 'em. But I feel like a kettle about to boil.


Mum is fifty tomorrow, and of course I decided to make a cake when my head is pounding, we have guests over and I only have a few hours to spare. Because clearly I just LOVE to add more stress to my life (what is wrong with me? No really, please send help). I just made the cream cheese frosting and had a melt down.

The frosting wasn’t the consistency I wanted, so I put it on full speed in an act to bully the frosting to play ball. Being the clumsy, idiot self I am, I lift the lid, whilst the mixer is on full speed. It was well and truly, the last straw. I fall to the ground ( that’s covered in frosting) crying like a baby (I’m also covered in frosting).


Mum: "Love, do you ever think that you bite off more than you can chew?"

I nod whilst crying and licking the frosting from my cheek. 

Mum: “Why don’t you go and sit down for a little bit, I’ll make you a cup of tea. You can finish this off tomorrow when you’re back from your meeting".

My mum is just an angel from heaven, she just gets me

Han: "Okay mum, I think I will" I uttered whilst straightening my inflatable crown

So there we have it, my week ladies and gentleman. What. A. Plot. Twist! 

I’ll revisit the cake and the redundancy situ' with a fresh and rested mindset tomorrow. But for now, I’m taking my lil stress head ass to bed.

Life is a funny thing, it throws obstacles that at the time, we don’t think we can handle, but they turn us into a stronger and wiser beings, with yummy cake that’s beautifully frosted.

P.S. I’m so lucky and proud to be where I am with my career at my age, especially with my health condition. My manager told me that we’ll be meeting for coffee in a few years and smiling at how this difficult time lead to one of the best moves for my career. Though I am still freaking out about the uncertainty, I believe that he is right and better things are coming.

P.P.S sorry if I've been stressy towards you or a sassy lil so and so the past week, I've been really struggling.

Han x

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