Why hello there! It's been a few days. I've been thrown out of the frying pan and into the fire in my new job this past week, leaving me little free time.
Overall, I really enjoy it. I love some of the work I'm doing. I was annoyed at the start of the week when I had to do some clean up left behind by the woman I replaced. She was given a few assignments that never got done...so what the hell was she doing? Who knows?
Regardless, I'm glad to be there. I'm happy, and that's huge. I'm not earning any more or less than I was earning before (though the drive/travel up there does require a little more spending on our part), but I don't dread every step of the way. I don't have a huge knot in my stomach each morning. I don't feel worthless when I talk to my boss. In my previous job, I felt those things everyday. Not fun! My apprehension at the end of my maternity leave in March was...awful. I didn't want to leave my baby, but I didn't really want to return to work there, either. After being on basically a second maternity leave all summer, I knew it would be hard to return to work. I was afraid I'd have the same apprehension I had in March, but surprisingly (and refreshingly) I didn't!
I don't want to go into too much detail...maybe some day. But for those who aren't "in the know", my old workplace was so terribly toxic for me. I came home everyday tired and grumpy. I complained about everything there. It began to affect my whole outlook--my life, my marriage, my car....my cat! I started to look for a new job over a year ago, and then we found out I was pregnant. There was no point to leave. I had time built up and days set aside for my maternity leave. I couldn't very well begin working at a new school or new company and then have to take a maternity leave after four months. I knew it'd be best to stick it out and just deal with all the crap I had to deal with. And I did, or at least, I tried. And it wasn't terrible...I knew my last day was coming, and I left my classroom in excellent, more-than-capable hands. I had almost 4 months to stay at home and far, far away from my job.
When I returned, I thought that maybe it wouldn't be so bad. Maybe things had gotten better? Wrong. Terribly wrong. There were major issues with the leadership there that were causing, in my uneducated opinion, a functional breakdown in the course of the school. When I came home at the end of a day, I'd be tired and worn out. I was so angry all the time. I realized it wasn't fair to keep working in this environment. It was affecting my marriage, my daughter, my home....even my cat. I couldn't keep doing that to myself, let alone the rest of my family.
Once I made the decision to leave, I felt so much better. I was able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The day I turned in my keys and pulled out of the parking lot was a good day indeed. Hannah was in the backseat and I told her to take a long look because we wouldn't be back anytime soon. A good friend of mine was really encouraging and helped me sort out all my conflicting emotions. In an email, she told me, "One day you'll drive past that place and you'll say to Hannah, 'I used to work there, and I got out. I left so I could go back to school and make life better for all of us.'" That was pivotal, and so, so right.
I was nervous to begin working in my new job. I was afraid that perhaps I'd made myself look too good on my resume. Perhaps I'd misrepresented myself in my interviews...what if I wasn't as awesome as they thought I was? But after a week, I'm feeling much more confident about my job, my abilities, and the co-mingling of the two. I really like what I've done so far, and everyone I work with has been exceptionally friendly. And, major bonus: I eat for free on campus. WINNING!
I know there will be days and weeks and months where I am not honeymooning on my job. There will be days where I come home angry and tired. As long as the good days outnumber the bad, I'll be alright.