It is two weeks since I left my job of 15 years, 1 month and 15 days.
(I typed that line, then got up and went to the kitchen, got a diet Dr. Pepper and a few grapes. Then I stood in the kitchen and had to talk myself into going back to the computer and writing more.)
The days before I left my job were excruciating. I was a big messy pile of guilt and confusion. This job had been the best of all possible places in the world for me. It gave me support, family, community, money. It filled me with purpose and let me do the one thing I had always wanted to do.
And then the business environment changed and the job became more thankless and difficult. I found myself becoming more cranky and miserable. My feet hurt all the time. The customers were stupid. All the product was inferior. Employees were just monkeys and clueless. Everything was wrong and there were people breathing my air!
One of the things I know about myself, I will overstay my welcome if I am comfortable.
And this time I was about 5 years overdue. I feel like I need to send out a giant apology card to everyone who has had to deal with me as I went through this transition. Like, here world, have a muffin basket.
One my last day, two weeks ago, I was a sobbing, hysterical, anxiety racked mess. I was sure I had made the wrong choice. I was sure that I had thrown away the perfect job. That I was spitting in the face of the Universe that had given me this gift of a job that I had so enjoyed and that had healed me in so many ways.
D3 took the day off and hung out with me that day. I was not sure why he did it, but when the day came I got it. He drove me to the parking lot and sat with me as I cried, wailed that I had made a big mistake, swore I was not going to get out of the car, and cried and blew my nose some more. I was a mess, plain and simple. The whole day is a blur.
A number of years ago, a friend of mine got fired from her job, and came into my work to see me. She was shaking and lost, and most of all in shock. I listened as she tried to make sense of everything and planned to get a job by the next day and and and and and… Then she cried. I handed over a box of kleenex. While she blew and wiped, I wrote her a prescription. I wrote it on a sticky tab. It simply said, “(Insert her name her) is allowed to do absolutely nothing for the next two weeks”. I gave it to her and told her to follow that prescription.
(in the vernacular of movie scripts)
CUT TO: 12 years later…
Sitting in a coffee shop with this same woman, (who by the way I had lost track of for 6 years and only just bumped into at the movies two days earlier). I told her what I was doing. As I cried and babbled and told her how I was going to make this and that and do this and that and and and… She pulled out a piece of paper and wrote “Zoe Claire is allowed to fuck off for the next two weeks.”
I have carried this around in my pocket and my bag now for a bit over two weeks, it is now taped to my wall.
It is the best advise anyone has given me in a long time.
(yeah, I know, it’s sideways. I still have to learn this program.)
So, today it begins.
Wish me luck.