Monday, August 8, 2011


I'm thinking about the day I applied for my first restaurant job. I was scared to death! I am an extreme introvert, shy, hate the phone, am completely awkward talking to strangers, at parties or within large groups of people. So, you may be asking yourself, WHY in the world would I work in restaurants?

Good question! I had a friend who worked there, I needed the money. Also: I was young and had no idea what else to do. Three times I approached the door on that fateful day. Three times I could not muster the courage to actually go in. Finally, somehow - probably some angel was kicking my butt - I did it.

As it turned out, I spent the next six years working in restaurants in Kansas City, Portland Oregon, the East Bay of San Francisco, and Washington DC. It was a very fun mini-career in which I learned how to act like I was at ease in public, also how to banter while simultaneously doing about five tasks at once. Restaurant work is GREAT for developing those skills. In fact my mini-career in restaurants is the very reason I was hired at the San Francisco Symphony. My boss knew if I could wait tables, I could certainly juggle several projects all at once. During my restaurant years, I was able to work pretty much anywhere, hence I moved to a number of cities from the west coast to the east coast. In those jobs, I met people who are still dear to me all these years later.

Where there's fear, there's power.

I remember the day I left San Francisco to move to DC. I was such a wreck, in shock actually, that I accidently shut Jake's tail in the car door. Poor guy! He had a slight bend in his tail from that point forward.

But the move here was all for the good, hey? I say hey. Which is why I am trying to calm myself. One week from today is my last day at the Quiet Waters Center on Constitution. I'm moving my practice into the chateau! It's going to be a great thing for clients in many ways: accessibility to the Metro, easy parking. Also those with mobility problems will only have to take 4 steps down, 4 steps up, instead of the flight of stairs at Quiet Waters. The chateau is peaceful, clean and quiet. It is cozy.

Financially the move will be a tremendous boon. I've never worked from my own space before, never wanted to work from my own space, until now. The very same angel who kicked my ass through the door of my first restaurant job has apparently been shoving hard - for awhile now - to get me through this shift. I have balked, dug in my heels. I think that poor angel had to put on her divinely radiant angel army boots so as to create the greatest possible impact. I'm scared to make this change even though I KNOW in my heart of hearts it is a good thing.

I might just as well be 22 years old, standing outside Annie's Santa Fe on the Country Club Plaza in Kansas City, shivering with terror. I've moved through MANY changes in my 58 years. Apparently, it's never easy for me.

For heaven's sake!


jeanette from everton terrace said...

SO exciting. Wonderful wonderful. It will be quite good for you, and your clients, as you said. You remind me so of my daughter, who doesn't like change (though she also has moved around a bit since graduating high school), she is very shy at first. I am not this person. I've just never felt it, but raising her, I do understand it a bit more now. She told me "wallflower" is a word she would never ever use to describe me. I have no real personal space but I don't like crowds - funny.

ellen abbott said...

I'm contemplating change myself. The economy is so bad and art is the first thing that gets cut and now with that little charade in DC wiping out any forward progress the economy made in the last two years I'm right back where I started with a silent phone. But I don't know what else I could do. Especially in this small town where jobs of any kind are scarce even when things are good.

Kerry said...

Waiting tables is a really hard job; I did this too. The tips made it seem worthwhile; that's why I never fail to leave a decent tip now.

Working out of your own space will be mostly a very good thing, won't it? A big change, but one that I bet you will embrace easily. Will you miss the trip to and from your workplace?

Jinksy said...

Change and courage go hand in hand...Good Luck with your latest one! ♥

Reya Mellicker said...

Thanks Jinxy.

Kerry I will miss the walk though I will no doubt continue to walk back and forth since I have many friends on this block.

Onwards and upwards!

Meri said...

Change is in the air, I think. I'm about to leap, too -- and I see Ellen is, as well.

Cyndy said...

I remember when I switched from a combination of teaching students at their houses or the local community college to just teaching in my own home studio. It was a good change.

Not only will you save a ton of money by not renting a workspace, but you'll have a lot more scheduling flexibility. Best of luck in your new workspace!

P.S. I love the alternating legs, the cool socks and the matching shoes on your banner. Too cute!

Tom said...

you are ever changing ever growing, quite amazing actually, restless indeed, yet grounded. luck with the new work digs!

Jo said...

Gosh, Reya, I don't think change comes easily for most of us. In fact, I think it's even harder as we age!

Good for, GREAT for you that you recognized the need for change and then followed through! I think you will LOVE working in your own space.

Way to go, girlfriend! ♥

Reya Mellicker said...

THanks, Jo. <3

Gemel said...

Let's hear it for the angels!
I have had them kick my butt a time or two as well.
All of us resist change, change is confronting, but oh so liberating as well....

Wishing you well in your next exciting chapter ♥

Reya Mellicker said...