Sometimes Things Don’t Go As Planned

Planning

A few months ago, I quit my job.  I left the chaos, the sleepless nights, the nagging feelings of guilt, and the constant depression and fear.  I let it go–dropped it on the floor and walked away.

Within one week of making the decision to quit, I had another job offer on the table.

I was elated. I thanked God, the universe, and stars for their alignment in my favor. There was a feeling that I’d finally, finally made a good decision regarding my career and I was being rewarded for it. This new opportunity was close to my home, offered a great deal of flexibility, was not social work-related in the least, it  dealt directly with something I’d been wanting to do for a while, and my supervisor was a rock star that I’d met a few years before. All was perfect–except it was only 20 something hours a week. Yikes! Having always worked full-time and being the provider of most, if not all benefits like health insurance, dental, etc., this was new ground for me. I justified it though.  “They said that this position will go full-time within a few months, so I’ll only be part-time for a little while,” is what I told myself. “If things get too rough, we have a nice savings account to supplement for the few months I’m part-time.  Jam can get health insurance through Hubz and I can do without for a little while; it’s no big deal.”

Fact is, it was a big deal.  A huge deal! Not only was I making significantly less money, but I was also giving up the safety and security that having a full-time, benefits-providing, career job brought me.  But I was chasing my dream, right? I was taking the risks necessary to get that good outcome on the other end. That’s what “dream chasers” do, right? Go all in?

So I went all in.

And it wasn’t long before things started happening that made me question my decision:

Jam got sick. Very, very sick. This meant I had to take time off, like over a week, to be in the hospital with her. So did Hubz. Thank goodness he had some sick time; I wasn’t so lucky. And about that health insurance? Yeah, coverage for her was denied through Hubz’s job. Gotta love those loopholes.

While Jam was in the hospital, our second car started acting up. By the time she got out, it was done. On top of everything else that was happening, we had to figure out how manage all of it, with one vehicle. Yay for panic attacks!

Through all of this, though, I just kept swimming. Just kept justifying this decision to quit my job, even though it was shaping up to be a poor one. I couldn’t fathom that I was the one that was putting all this pressure on my family by not providing like I should have been. “This is just a rough patch,” I would tell myself. “I’m just being tested to see how badly I want this and how much I’m willing to sacrifice to have it. Plus, it’s only a couple more months and I’ll be full-time, doing something that I love.”  Sadly, I can talk myself into anything.

It wasn’t long before even I got the message that I’d screwed up. I started asking about this illusive full-time position and couldn’t seem to get a straight answer. I gave myself a timeline for when I would start applying for other positions if I didn’t get an answer. Those deadlines came and went, yet I still held on to hope. I just didn’t want to give up on something that I felt I’d fought so hard to get. Besides, this full-time position was right around the corner!

But it wasn’t and eventually I had to face the fact that it wasn’t coming.  Soon after the new year, it was confirmed, “There’s just no money in the budget right now, but we can revisit in 6 months.” As pissed off and embarrassed as I was, I knew what I had to do.  I cried to my husband, made a list of what I wanted in a position, picked myself up and started applying.

Once I made up my mind and got serious about getting out of that situation, the wheels started turning. All of the insurance problems that we were facing with Jam, just seemed to melt away. All of the financial issues that we were starting to have seemed to be rectified right in the nick of time. And the guilt, frustration, and fear I was holding on to began to fade too.

I got serious and then the universe got serious. I said, ” I don’t want to live like this anymore”  and God said ,”You don’t have to.” It was confirmed that I wouldn’t have a full-time position at the end of January and by the end of February, I was in a new, full-time position outside of that company.

Sometimes things don’t go as planned. You have to be willing to pivot, and for the longest time, I wasn’t. But I paid for that, both figuratively and literally. We’re rebuilding every, single day, trying to get back to where we were, with the goal of surpassing that. I can’t say that nothing good came from that experience because there were definitely some good things, like being able to get away from a job that was physically making me sick and learning so much about myself. That being said, I’d still never want to relive that experience again.

Have you ever made a major decision that you weren’t completely sold on, but justified it in various ways? How did that work out for you?

Be sure to check out the other stories mentioned in this story:

And Another One

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