This picture is from the morning I wrote my resignation letter with my sleepy blind dog beside me.
Yesterday I quit my job. It was the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done. A couple of months ago I was thinking about leaving my job but it was my first job. I started working there when I was 18 and loved it. I planned to work there for my whole life. It had great benefits and good promotion offers. It was a company I was proud to say I worked for. I’m devastated that I had no other option then to hand in my notice.
I talked myself out of leaving saying, “This is just a rough patch and I’m stronger”. I saw it out and managed to get a promotion too. I was extremely proud of myself, and still am. I was there 2 years when I got that promotion. It took someone who was there 15 years to get that same promotion but I worked my finger to the bone every day. I’m just one of those people that thrives on a project. I love being kept busy. When people ask “Do you want to do it the hard way or the easy way?” I always say the hard way. I love a challenge, I love trying to figure out something and learning a new skill. I love taking the hard road because I think it makes me that bit stronger, that bit more willing to try, to fight, to survive.
But my metal health was taking a huge hit. It was ever since I started working there but I was able to manage it. I thought once I got this promotion and moved jobs it would be easier. It was for a while but then it got worse. Unimaginably so. The bullying, the racism, the sexism. I couldn’t take it anymore. Enough was enough.
While I’m one to take the road less travelled, I still let people walk all over me. I avoid confrontation at all costs and never put myself first. I wore myself down and I let them wear me down too because I had no fight left in me. I didn’t have the courage to stand up for myself and I was terrified to stand up for others.
I handed in my notice with not a penny to my name. I have my car insurance to pay in 4 weeks which is a hefty €2,000. I booked my first holiday in 11 years. I’m going to New York. But I don’t have a penny to pay for it. These are two of the many expenses I have that I can’t afford. But I had to get out.
I usually have to have everything planned down to a T. Everything is checked and double checked. I leave nothing to chance so this was a massive leap for me. It was reckless but you can’t put a price on mental health. It seems even more impetuous because I have no qualifications. I’m going into the world of the unemployed hoping someone will see how hard-working I am. I worked 12 hour shifts. I have done 90 hour weeks. I did shift work. I never backed down from a challenge and I’m a great team player. But you can’t see that by looking at someone.
I’m going to be honest here. I am freaking out a little. I lie awake at night thinking HOW am I going to pay for everything? I think maybe I can sell my car? But someone keyed it last month so I’d never get enough to make it worth it, because I need my car to get to a job. It’s starting to sound like a series of unfortunate events. But I like a challenge. Right? I have to keep reminding myself that.
It was the right decision and I’m strong. It was the right decision and I’ll be okay. It was the right decision and it will work out. Soon I hope.
Over the last 3 months I grew a back bone. As cliché as it sounds I woke up one day and said “No, this is my life. I should be deciding what I do and how I feel. This is not okay.” I never would have grown that backbone if it wasn’t for three people. These three people happen to be “YouTubers”. I say happen to be, because it’s who they are as a person that gave me the courage and strength to leave my job. It wasn’t a video they made or a blog post they wrote. It was just them.
Now in case Caroline, Lucy or Alfie are reading this , although HIGHLY doubtful, I just want to make it clear that you shouldn’t be panicking. Don’t be thinking “oh dear god what did I say for her to leave her job without having one lined up, without any money saved, will she blame me if it all goes wrong?!”. Absolutely not!
You each gave me and taught me something different. Something that helped me grow as a person and put myself first in a positive way.
Caroline, as I said before you’re like my Oprah. You are just one kick ass woman. You’re a strong, courageous, brave, intelligent, sharp, quick-witted, confident and caring woman. You don’t let people walk all over you and you let them know when they’ve overstepped the mark. You’re not a woman to be crossed especially when it comes to your children. You know everything there is to know about skin care, and then some. You take your time to help people who’s skin is really getting them down, purely out of the goodness of your heart. I should know, I’m one of those people. You also had the initiative and heart to set up an incredible organisation that helps women in need. You see the funny side to everything too. (A quick throw back to your Red Room of Pain in that hotel.)
You showed me the courage I needed to say enough was enough. You showed me how to be kind-hearted without people taking advantage of it. You showed me that family and friends are there to fight your corner when you need them most. You showed me to take something your passionate about and throw everything you have at it. You showed me to fight.
Lucy, you are another incredible woman. You’re beautiful, strong, determined, thoughtful, understanding, hard-working and generous. Your story is one for the books. You didn’t let the bullies win. You worked hard, thrived and look at you now.
You showed me that the only person who is really going to stand up for me is me. You showed me how to pick myself back up and keep fighting. You showed me that knowledge is power. You showed me to believe in myself. You showed me how I could use exercise to control my anxiety and now I barely notice it. You practically gave me back control of my life. I can’t thank you enough.
Alfie, you are an amazing human. You send out an incredible message to anyone who watches your videos. That’s such an important thing to take on, especially as a lot of your viewers are young and impressionable. You send out the right message. You are an extremely hard-working person that has established himself at such a young age. You are a permanently positive, friendly, kind, charitable, happy, dedicated, spirited, inspiring and intelligent man.
You showed me to work hard today to do my future self a favor. You showed me to value my mental health and check in regularly. You showed me to cherish every moment and be appreciative of everything. You showed me to always stay positive. You showed me to work hard at your hobby and turn it into your job. You showed me I can do it if I give it my all. You showed me to speak my mind, even if my voice shakes.
You each taught me something so valuable, it grew into the strength, courage and confidence I needed to put myself first. When I handed in my notice and explained why I had to leave, I bawled crying. I was, and still am, incredibly upset that I had no other choice to leave a job I adored. If the people who surrounded me were different then I could stay. It’s so important to surround yourself with good, positive people. Walk away from people who take great fun in tearing you down and attacking your humanity.
I’m hoping it will all work out. I’m still going to work my finger to the bone and never give up. I’m even looking into college courses to see if next year maybe I could go back and get a qualification. I’d love to travel to England and go to college there but that’s another thing I will have to save for. Maybe next year.
I hope in some roundabout way this blog post may have helped someone. Maybe you might realise your potential and self-worth. Keep your ethics and beliefs close to your heart and hold your head high.
To Caroline, Lucy and Alfie. Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. I have a long and scary road ahead of me but I will always have my strength and courage that you gave me, to get me there. Maybe this blog post will make you realise your own worth, potential, value and importance in this world. Just think where I would be without you.
Lastly, and a bit cheekily, if you know of any jobs going please send them my way! I’m not great during an interview so I need as many options as possible. I hope you’re having a lovely day and certainly a better week than me. But you’re strong too, don’t be afraid to change the things in your life that are bringing you down.
(Just a quick apology for letting my blog take a hit these last couple of months. With my Grandfather passing, my Grandmother falling seriously ill, the first anniversary of my Uncle’s passing and quitting my job, I’m sure you can see why I wasn’t posting very often. Or at all. When I eventually felt like writing, my laptop decided to break completely with no hope of being revived. If this post is reading oddly I’m sorry, I had to write it on my phone.)