Between the first of February and now, so many things have happened in my life. I’ve been to so many amazing things from Winterlicious to Wine and Colouring – It’s been spectacular. One of the best part of it though is that I now have a new job.
Great, right? I started it two weeks ago and though it is challenging at times, learning old things again and gaining new knowledge, I am happy. But over the last few days I came down with a kick-ass case of the flu. Am talking stuffy nose, sore throat, itchy ears, ears popping for no reason–It’s bad. I saw my doctor and she recommended vitamin C, rest and fluids so I’ve been drinking tons of water and a little orange juice. But I’ll get better.
That wasn’t what I wanted to talk about. What I logged in here to write about is what happened to me for six years. For six years I was miserable–not 100 percent of the time but a good 85 percent of the time. You see, the job I had was easy enough to do but the people I was working with and for weren’t the nicest. I mean sure, I know in every workplace there’s that one person or a few people who are just impossible to work with, but when everyone around you seem hellbent on ripping your soul out (dramatic? Maybe), it tends to get to you.
For six years I had no time for me or much of anything or anyone else. Dating was out of the question because no real man wants a woman who would never have time for him. My whole world revolved around my job.
I had no weekends to do anything, no weekdays to do anything and even with all of that I had no money. I mean I worked all the time and was still broke. The downside (yes, it got worse) was that I couldn’t take on a second job because the first job scheduled me so strangely, there would be no time.
Let me break it down for you like this.
On more than one occasion I’ve had to put my foot down and remind people that though they may not like me and though I am quiet, they will respect me and will not speak to me as if I’m a child. What I mean by that is this– I will not have you swear at me in the workplace because it is not appropriate – I will not be yelled at or patronized because you feel you are better than me, that is not how it works.
I had a manager who wanted us to “go outside” so she could fight me. I had one supervisor tried getting me fired (a good thing my boss knew the type of person I am and knew if he fired me that would be illegal). I’ve had supervisors yelling at me/swearing at me, customers yelling/swearing at me, one guy said “Pickering used to be a nice place until all the damn Jamaicans started moving in…”
To say this place was toxic would have been the understatement of all time.
One person tried killing herself, one girl died after she got an infection after a surgery that she returned to work too soon after. One lady died after a series of hospital visits and surgeries. Another lady came to work one day, went home and merely dropped dead.
I can’t make this crap up.
She simply dropped dead.
And then others seemed to be getting pregnant one after the other.
After a while I realized, with my luck the only way out was dead or pregnant.
That terrified me, gave me new reasons to sob until I coughed.
At the end of the day, it was a job and though I carried myself with decorum and went in on time, did my job to the best of my ability and stayed in my lane, I found myself falling deeper and deeper into depression.
Let me explain.
I spent the 2 fifteen minute breaks in my shifts in the bathroom sobbing. I would cry until I get couldn’t anymore, then I’d wash my face with cold water and get back to work. At nights when I got home I’d just say hello to whoever was in my living room, climb the stairs, locked myself in my bedroom and cry. I could never see the good in anything or anyone, anything that happened in my life I was always sitting waiting for the other shoe to drop and a good 99 percent of the time, when the shoe did drop, it was bad–it was very, very bad.
Sure, my friends tried helping. One friend tried and after she started dating someone I couldn’t talk to her anymore because that someone was always around. I mean sure, I am happy for her and I liked her special someone well enough but I didn’t want my business going to someone I don’t even know. After a while of trying to talk to her I just stopped calling or facetiming. There wasn’t room for both of us in her life and that’s okay. She’s happy.
My other best friend, I call her Aster was so good, she even got her mother involved in helping me. I mean hours on facetime searching for jobs, chats through emails and texts. She would drive from where she lives, almost two hours – even going through her own crap–to visit me. One day I started crying and just couldn’t stop. No matter where I was or what I was doing tears would just stream down my face. I told her and she and her boyfriend dropped what they were doing, drove to Toronto to bring me white hot chocolate from Starbucks. That day I hugged her harder than I have ever hugged her, loved her more than I’ve ever loved her–hell I was so touched I hugged her boyfriend too and I’d barely known him at the time.
When the new year rolled around I decided – enough was enough. Seriously, sooner or later I’d run out of tears, right? I told my best friend this year would be the year. I wanted out and I don’t care how. I told her I refused to spend another year in this job–I would rather die.
She didn’t tell me I was being dramatic or overreacting–she understood.
We started sending out resume’s again. But this time we gutted the resumes I had. We rewrote, edited, gutted again until finally we had pieces that were almost foreign to me. Sure, it had all my experiences and education but they looked remarkably different.
Thankfully, it worked. My new job is amazing. The people around me so far have been nothing but spectacular and like I said, it’s challenging but I enjoy it immensely. I don’t mind getting up early for work. Because now I’m being treated as if I’m human. I have my weekends to do whatever I want–to go out, start dating, make new friends, patch things up with the old friends I’ve lost because of the old gig. I can write more, read more, spend more time with the people I love, go on vacation.
What I’m trying to say is somewhere, someone will be reading this feeling just how I felt. Just know that at some point you WILL have had enough and reach out for help. Just know no matter what you do, life is life and all you have to do is live it. Sure, it may not be what you wanted–what you were looking for, but even when you find the job, find something that you love doing and do that on the side. Do everything you can to gain your happiness, your freedom. Do not feel guilty for being happy and stop waiting for the other shoe to drop. You are fabulous.
Now, I’m going to get some rest.