Five and half years ago, I remember standing outside of a large room trying to decide if I had made the right decision and if I should walk in or turn around and go back home to Grand Blanc. Just give into the fear that I wasn't good enough for an internship with the Governor's Office. Instead, I shocked myself and walked into the room to take on my next challenge. This turned out to be the best thing I could have ever done. In that time, I met some amazing people, did things I never thought I would and learned so much about myself.
In a way, I feel like I grew up there and changed for the better. I became a more vocal person without forgetting who I was. I learned to finally stand up for myself, for the most part. Working in that office, I learned that the people (the general public) that we work for had a voice and all we had to do was listen. It made me appreciate things a lot more than I ever had before.
I had the chance to work for Michigan's first, and certainly not the last, women governor. When I worked in Scheduling, I often worked 9, 10 hour days and hated getting up the next morning. Then I would think of how the governor had probably been up hours before I had and was still going. It made me rethink a lot of things and pushed me to work a lot harder. While I worked here, I would often think, 'How many people do you know actually got a chance to say that they ran into the governor in the halls of their building?' Not that many people. In my time here, I learned a lot about the ins and outs of state government and saw things the general public didn't know about. How the governor had to fight with the senate for the people that she represented and protect them. How the news never talked about the positive things that she achieved, only the negative.
When my boss said goodbye for the last time yesterday afternoon, the dam broke and I couldn't help but cry. Despite everything that was ever said, he meant well and was a good boss who would go to bat for his team. To me, that says a lot about a person. Other than my internship supervisor in Legal, he will be the one that I remember the most.
It was here that I met some of my closest friends. It was with Katie that I would IM all day as an intern despite the fact that she was in the next cubicle and laugh. It took Amy and I a year to realize that neither of us could hear the other and became good friends. It was Jessica who made working in Scheduling tolerable with our weekly Beaners run and sarcasm. The "family" lunches weren't as awkward. It was Adair and Allison that I was glad to have join our group over the summer. It was my last round of interns that kept me on my toes all summer long. I honestly could go on forever, but I don't think it's necessary. Before we left for the last time, we promised to stay in touch and get together as much as possible.
It was almost like after graduation in a way. The one difference is that these people changed my life and for that, I am grateful. They didn't look at where I was from, the color of my skin or anything like other people I had dealt with before. Instead, they made it a point to get to know me and became like a family to me. They knew before anyone else when I had a lot on my mind and just needed someone to listen or needed to be called out. They were the people that I didn't feel like I had to explain myself, almost like my real family.
Five and half years later, I walked out of the Romney building for the last time remembering all of the memories that I now had and know that no matter what, I was blessed to even get the chance to work there. To meet the people that I did, who changed my life for the better. To become a person who now has this insane amount of experience and can go anywhere, do anything. There were days that I hated my job, but in the back of my mind, I knew that wasn't true. Any job that I take after this may never measure up to this, but that's okay.
To the end of an era!