There was hurt, betrayal, nausea, panic, and the feeling that my life had been ripped right out from underneath me. I imagined an obnoxious douche muppet laughing at me while he held the edges of the rug as I fell, but make no mistake, his identity was clear. Very clear.
Now it's been a few days and I have finally been able to catch my breath. That nauseous pain of looming dread has subsided. I have even been able to sleep a couple nights without angry words swirling around my mind like a screaming motherfucking tornado.
After all that had calmed down, I began to think.
I thought about all the long nights I stayed up to 3am working with no compensation.
I thought about how even working as much as I did, I was still being paid about 20% less than I should have been earning, and had been refused a raise twice.
I thought about how I was guilted into coming off my maternity leave early because they "needed me".
I thought about how I was paying so much for childcare that I could barely afford other essentials, like groceries.
I thought about how I haven't been able to switch off even once since 2007, even on holiday - even on my trip to Australia in 2010, I worked on my laptop every night when I could have been, oooh, I don't know, enjoying my friends that I traveled 22 hours on a plane to see? . . .
I thought about how I even began seeing a therapist because I feel like I was unraveling. Me! The one in the group who "always had it together".
Yes, I have been thinking about all of that and wondering why I had let it go on as long as I did.
Fear, most likely.
But now this fear has been made my forced reality, and do you want to know something? It's not so bad.
I've been angry and stressed out for so long that this fear is nothing more than the sickly little runt of the litter . . . box.
And for the first time since my children were 8 months old, I've been able to play with them -- I mean REALLY play with them -- without all the shit I was going to have to deal with at work the next day running through the back of my mind. Distracted.
After putting up with 5 years of bullshit, my mind in finally clearing and it's pretty damn spectacular.
Same thing happened to me about 18 months ago. Except it was forced retirement after 37 years at the same (corporate) company. I felt chewed up and spat out like a piece of old gum. But guess what? The two guys who fired me walked out after six months and all the friends I had there were also swept out or resigned, even the chairman.ReplyDelete
I read recently one of those quotes - love your job but not your company (unless it's you own, of course!). Still, I went through the whole grieving process - my job was so much a part of me and i felt bereaved.
Take it easy - it takes time. And I love your blog.
Talk about seeing the silver lining! I'm glad you are finding peace in this situation and getting your perspective back on what you really want to spend your time on. It's totally their loss, lady. And you know this!ReplyDelete
Time and perspective and JUST BEING AWESOME make all the difference, no? Enjoy this season with your family.ReplyDelete
I TOTALLY understand. This summer, when I was going through hell with our new house, and we all had to leave so the work could get done, my family had the most WONDERFUL time at a Residence Inn, the Childrens' Museum, the beach. And none of it would have happened if our house wasn't a craphole. You'll get back on your feet. Until, then, though, enjoy every second!!ReplyDelete
Enjoy the liberation that comes from being on your own schedule; enjoy eating cereal for lunch in your p.js & being able to have as many snuggles & tickle sessions until the kids say enough.ReplyDelete
Had this happen to me 4 years ago & the difference it made to our home lives was so incredible I haven't been back to work. Financially we ended up minutely worse off as most of my money was going to child care, I gave up 2 books & an album a month & that levelled it out!
It was such a huge blessing to us as daughter went through a massively awful case of bullying in her first year of Senior school (11yrs old, shy & mild aspergers) and having me at home able to drive over to the school at a moments notice, able to get her to counselling sessions & then doing all the viewings of potential new schools (yep, it got that bad) made all the difference to her, something I would never have been able to do if I was still at work.
I was hoping you'd get to that point. :) It sounds like you needed to get the hell away from that job for your own health and sanity anyway. I sincerely hope you got a severance of some sort and/or UI so you can take some time to find YOU again, and enjoy the holidays with the kids. :)ReplyDelete
Thanks for all your awesome words and encouragement!!ReplyDelete
This... makes me very very happy for you. :-)ReplyDelete
I'm happy to hear this, friend. Hindsight's 20/20, no?ReplyDelete
I can really relate. This year I had to leave my long loved job and they did me wrong. The institution was so much a part of me that I have been involved in it since I was three years old, so I went through a mourning process. But then I woke up and said fuck this, I ain't working for anyone who doesn't appreciate it. So I just find work on my own, which I am sure that you can, and I can't believe that I put up with all the bullshit for so freaking long. Take advantage of your down time right now=)ReplyDelete