So, yeah. So much for a Blog Project. I wonder how many abandoned blogs there are out there?
An extraordinarily difficult time in my life is coming to a close. This is great news, except that it is possible that another extraordinarily difficult time is following right on its heels.
My new job was a disaster almost from the first day. I won't go into details here, but I was ridiculed and insulted on a fairly regular basis. When I asked for advice on how I could improve, or concrete examples of criticism that was hurled at me, I was turned down. My boss told me I was "the worst employee I've ever had" and then expected me to want to form a professional relationship with him. Yeah...no thanks. My inner Creep Alarm bell went off constantly with this guy, and I took any interaction with him down to a bare minimum. I got my work done, and that was about it.
I was finally told I was being fired....but in four months. I appreciate the notice period and the opportunity to work while I found something new, but it felt like a long, slow death. Four months of coming to work every single day and knowing you are not wanted is HARD. All of my projects were put on hold, or delegated to someone else. Basically I just sat on my computer all day messing around online. It was not a fun existence.
I came home crying more times than I care to admit. The number gets higher if you count the number of times I started crying randomly at home. I was miserable, and I knew I was making my spouse miserable by being so miserable. Talk about a Misery Spiral. The looming termination and the thought of having to go through yet another "you're horrible at your job but I won't tell you why" meeting was unbearable. I had had enough, and I needed healing desperately. Though I hadn't lined up another job, I resigned. I provided 8 days notice. My boss did not even acknowledge my resignation, and during my notice period I was completely and totally ignored.
I said goodbye to people I'd come to know over the past year. The kindness of people I barely knew was so incredibly welcome but also so incredibly frustrating - why couldn't I work for them? Why did I have to get stuck with the guy with Issues who decided on my first day that I was a target? It was such a welcome relief to be around supportive people and to start breaking myself of the "you are such a failure" mentality that had been driven into my skull.
Tomorrow is my last day, and I am surprisingly zen about the whole thing. At this point I welcome change, and the prospect of being unemployed does not scare me (yet). I have been getting interviews, and have been exploring volunteer and temporary options. We will not go hungry or bankrupt if I go a while without a job. Honestly, it is nice to feel free to explore other options and really think about where I want to go from here. However, I hope and pray that the difficulty of the past year does not become a new difficulty of extended unemployment.
It was important for me to leave my job with my dignity intact and to leave gracefully and professionally. I really did not want to give any notice period - but I knew it was the right thing to do. I thought daily about giving my boss the old one-fingered salute and a big ol' F U but I know I would hate myself for it, and fear that behavior like that would come back to haunt me. Despite the damage that has been done to me and despite the strong words I have for my former employer, at least I can say I left on my own terms and in my own way. Even in my young career I know that it really is a small world out there, and that your reputation will follow you wherever you go.
As I enter my final day at this terrible job, I try and contemplate the professional growth I have experienced this year. While I wouldn't say I've gained a lot of concrete skills, I know my maturity has increased and my confidence in dealing with difficult situations has improved significantly. I jokingly referred to this notice period and coming days as 'detox' and I really don't think that word is too far off. Right now the focus is on healing myself and living for me. I trust that things will work themselves out in due time, and take pride in knowing I took a great Leap of Faith into the next phase of my life.