ou won’t regret it, Linda, I promise.” I pressed end on my phone and plopped onto the couch, glee seeping through me. Legendary Linda was coming out of retirement for me.

I texted Deedee: You’ll never guess who I got out of retirement — Linda Sanchez!

No way! The two of you together will take over the world

I smiled goofily. Yes, we would. Linda may have been out of the industry for five years, but talent is talent, and she’d be working for me. Part-time, yes, but on my team, as soon as I found an office — she wasn’t coming into my house. And it’s not just because I’m neurotic; Ari would hate it, and I’m not going to do that to him. So I needed an office space, chic but cheap, and fast. I lay down on the couch. The leather was cool, refreshing, and I closed my eyes for a minute. This was exciting and nerve-racking — good things were happening, but they demanded a lot of me as well. I inhaled and exhaled mindfully then opened my eyes and bolted upright.

I dialed Ari, but I was too late, I knew, and I felt a pit in my stomach. I should’ve at least told him I was hiring Linda before I did it. I still don’t think he should have any say in the agency, but…this is the third time I’ve done something without sharing a peep in advance.

The call went to voice mail, I pulled the phone from my ear and looked at it like it had malfunctioned. Ari always picks up. I rubbed the tips of my fingers against each other, trying to stop their twitching. I’ve never noticed how much I expect Ari to just be there.

Back in the kitchen, I pulled my laptop close and started Googling available office spaces. It was clear pretty fast that my best bet was a shared space, the ones where I could rent an office, not just a desk. Those were the more expensive ones, but the alternative was finding and furnishing an office myself as well as signing a lease for at least two years. I don’t have time for that. I felt like Ari for a moment — two years? Who could plan for two years? Live now.

I had two browser tabs open and toggled between the two, trying to figure out how much location mattered. They both offered complimentary coffee, 24/7 access, supposed luxury feel. I’d have to visit them to decide. I called both. Hess told me to come on down, the Industrious had no availability. Of course I wanted Industrious now.

It was a 25-minute drive, which could have been ten minutes if it wasn’t Brooklyn; my kitchen was much closer. It was an up and coming area, though — Industry City was nearby and so was Costco. Not sure why Costco excited me, I had no need for bulk size anything, yet, except for Advil.

I tried Ari again once I found a parking spot. He answered this time, and I was surprised at my relief.

(Excerpted from Family First, Issue 636)