I met someone recently whose company may have a job opportunity for me. I still don’t know where I belong professionally, only that I need to get involved in something vision loss-related. This possibility fits that bill. It is surreal to the billionth degree to be dusting off my resume after being on the Disabled List for three and a half years.
After wanting nothing more than to have my old life back, I feel strangely disconnected from that document which represents thirty years of my life’s work. But what it doesn’t depict is the years since I became legally blind.
How do you capture the life you have led outside of the workplace? The life that truly shapes your character and reflects your daily decision to fight or give up. When I think about the last three and a half years since my sight went haywire versus the thirty years that is my career, I almost feel nothing for the thirty and everything for the three and a half. Perhaps it’s time we added a personal biography to our professional credentials. Maybe we should tell our potential employers what else has formed us besides our profit/loss margins or our proven ability to manage and lead a team. I take pride in my career accomplishments but I am more proud of the last 1,278 days. It will be interesting to see how this manifests itself as I promote myself to hiring decision makers moving forward.
They say your profession is not who you are, but what you do. My identity has always been wrapped up in my career and that’s been a huge hurdle to overcome since my optic nerves became compromised. But as I review my resume, I almost don’t recognize myself. As a result of the last three and a half years, I have never been less what I do and more who I am. And no one is more surprised than I.