ONE STEP AFTER THE OTHER
Listening to life's callings has been making the building of my path very pleasant.
This picture of me on my badge has been taken exactly 1775 days ago, when I started working at Google.
I still recall the turmoil of sensation this story created.
The recruiting process for my internship took 6 months and I started it without even believing I could be selected.
But life was calling so I went on.
After the 6th interview, on the last stage of the process, the idea of being selected didn't seem so insane anymore.
I was not selected.
I was directed to a role and, even though they liked me, there was someone more highly qualified than me for that specific job.
And there wasn't any other open roles for me to be reallocated.
I felt frustrated.
I was advised to get in touch with Google after I graduated so I could try to get a full time job there — which, to me, sounded like mere consolation.
I felt really pressured to "become someone in life".
My parents spent a lot of money on my education and, even though I had been working for 3 years at that time, I earned on R$600 a month.
Maybe I'd graduate and not even be able to support myself.
And my father's prophecy, that I would never be someone studying advertisement and marketing, would be fulfilled.
By not being accepted, I also thought I was letting down some my closest people, who had been following the process with me and were confident.
I lost a lot of confidence in myself.
But there was one reflection that I couldn't seem to get out of my mind.
Being selected would prove that I was good enough and that I could "do well" in life.
But, if I almost made it and some people — and even myself — came to believe I was capable, why would a single negative answer change all this?
I was really bothered by the fact that I needed endorsement from an institution to legitimate my capabilities. And I started realizing how much this need was present in my life, much deeper than only professionally, but also in friendships, love relationships, family.
Life followed on and, two weeks lates, I received an e-mail about an internship role at Google that hadn't been filled yet and asking if I'd be interested.
Of course I was.
I was accepted.
The experience started and I felt dazzled.
Resourceful people, fun office, free and endless food, challenging work, autonomy and everything else I could expect at a job.
I was positively surprised with the logics of collaboration in which my team worked. Professional cooperation and personal connections. I had never seen that before — at least not in that level — in any of my past work experiences.
I dedicated a lot of energy into my 5 months of internship and I became a full time employee.
Life called me and I went on.
And the journey that followed was better than a dream. It was real.
Flexibility towards my personal life, professional challenges, friendships, respect for people and their differences, work trips, access to discussions and newest releases in technology, being promoted, bike to work, freedom to be myself at work, healthy and vegan options every meal, possibility to build initiatives towards racial justice inside and outside the office, volunteer work, given lectures, consciousness about the LGBTQ+ fight, managing large clients that mattered, a lot of learning with the kitchen team and a project with indigenous and quilombola communities.
Google became an important part of myself — without needing to make me work an insane amount of hours.
As curious as I've always been, while I was there I could go on discovering new things about myself, rediscovering my world from now points of view and discovering new worlds.
And amidst all these discoveries, after a few years, I found myself less present in that reality. I was satisfied with the things I was dedicating myself to and I noticed that I might want to live experiences that Goole might not be able to provide me.
I suffered to face the news.
I struggled with myself, got into arguments with my loved ones and raged against the situation.
I fell into a crisis.
What would it be like to not work at Google? How would I make money? Where would I live? How would I keep traveling? What if I regretted? What about all the doors Google could open to me? Could any of them bring me the experiences I was looking for?
Again, life called and I went on.
It seemed to me that the best way to respond to all of these questions was to understand better what were these experiences that I wanted to have.
I dove deeper into my yoga practice. Started therapy. Took a course. Started a post grad course. Read a book. Stopped my post grad course. Traveled to places that seemed to have such experiences. I met people from different circles. Read another book. Took part in different experiences. Started a yoga formation. Went to events that called my attention, even when I knew nobody there. Took another course. And another. And will take another one.
Little by little, I noticed that same energy from when I started interning at Google flowing through my bode and my soul claiming for a bigger change.
I welcomed it compassionately and accepted reality.
I started to take the steps towards this change, that's becoming real today.
I understood that the crisis I lived was not a problem. To the contrary, it was the solution to the unbalances I was living.
Looking back into these 4 years and 10 months at Google to write here, it's very evident how much gratitude I feel for having had the opportunity to live through all this. I close this chapter being sure that without every single detail of this story, this present moment wouldn't have been possible.
To Google and all the dear people whose paths crossed with mine: thank you very much.
In many ways, I carry you with me.
I take one more step and still feel all that curiosity and energy that have brought me all these gifts along the way, trusting that time almighty will show me the next ones to be unwrapped.
Life keeps calling and I keep on going.