Sometimes people have a that one "aha" moment, that big slap in the face, the dramatic, sudden realization that things aren't and have never been what they've seemed. For me, it was a series of little "ah" moments and tiny, sporadic slaps in the face that added up to be a million red flags, and I am fucking livid right now.
This was my first "real" job. This was supposed to be that job that I got in an oddly serendipitous fashion while I was working my just-for-money front-desk job at my school, and what better time for this opportunity to appear happen while I was an emotional fucking wreck from the shitstorm of my situation at home. This was it, this was my time to get out.
I was so blinded by emotion and the drive to get out of my home situation that I chose to ignore what was right in front of me. On my first day, one of my bosses made the immediate judgement call that I was this stiff, introverted, quiet girl and told me to "work on my first impressions". That sucked a whole fuckload to hear, but I let that slide.
And then I had my suspicions that perhaps one of them exuded a lot of the same traits that my mom did, but I then I gave her the benefit of the doubt and thought, hey, maybe I'm just being overly sensitive and projecting my gut feeling because my emotions were heightened by someone else at the time.
Eventually, I watched 8 different people quit working there in the short 7-month duration I've worked there, all for similar reasons, but I thought, "Hey, whatever, I've gotten pretty good at setting boundaries between my bosses and my personal life, which they have very little respect for", and this still wasn't enough to convince myself that I should leave. I convinced myself to stay because I was finally exercising a right that I didn't have at home, and goddamn that felt good.
Also, they kept telling me about what a good job I do! And how they need me! And how I've helped the company so much with my creative innovation!
But here's the thing: It's very easy to look like you are a pro at something in a room full of people who aren't the least bit interested in hearing about how you do it.
It's not to say that I don't think that I do a good job with the stuff I do, but I know I'm not the best person for this job. There are a million people I know who are a million more times qualified for this marketing job, and I know that because I'M NOT A FUCKING MARKETER. The difference between me, who does a good job, and people who do an amazing job is that they're actually driven to do this, not taken on a sharp turn from personal training to social media/marketing.
Oh, and let me tell you, when I found out that I was turned down for the original personal training job because I was fucking ASSUMED to only be a "you know, like, a girl who's like, only into cardio" after educating myself on the importance of balance in personal training since my junior year of high school and taking the jump to further my education on the human body in higher education, I fucking lost it.
I am going into my LAST year of learning about the importance of exercise and all it's components, and you think that I took interest in this for the past 4 years only to choose to ignore that completely and ONLY do cardio?
And why did you assume this? When the fuck did I say that? I don't even like cardio, and you assume my passion lies in art? What the fuck? This is where things started getting shaky as hell. But they shouldn't have been. They should have been more than shaky, projecting yourself onto someone and them making assumptions about their interests is fucking bullshit.
I should have left right then and there, but I felt like there were still lessons to be learned. On the side, I curated new, specific responsibilities for myself that I actually felt like doing. So why not stay for a little longer, the money can't hurt anyway, right?
It didn't matter if I get sporadically trapped in rooms while my bosses have couple fights and are yelling and screaming at each other over who's going to pick up food, or if they were the type of people to still say "retarded" as an insult, or constantly had communication issues with every single person who worked for them. I didn't have to like them. I was given room to do me, and that was worth it for me up until right now.
It's a Sunday, and I spent it working for 7 hours from 10a-5pm, only to get an angry call at fucking 10pm with, "Surprise! We're taking away your creative common's copy rights! None of the photos that you took are yours!" and I did some research and responded with copyright laws and double checked the employee handbook that I hadn't forfeited my photo copyrights, and I haven't. So I was upfront and asserted that it is unproductive for them to tell me these things after it is created. And I get 1) A rude response telling me to read the fucking handbook when I just did, 2) A sudden shift in focus, aka "Wait it's not your fault! There's no problem, we were just upset that someone else posted a photo and didn't tag us!". Then why the FUCK were you mad at me?
And that was it. I am done ignoring it. This is word-for-word the type of crazy-making bullshit my mom tries to pull on me. She gets angry out of no where, I am confused and feel violated, I make my point as clear as possible, and then I'm suddenly told it's not a problem and that I'm overreacting. And then later on pads it by saying I'm suddenly amazing etc etc. I am much, much smarter than to buy into this stupid fucking shithole of a game. This hits too close to home, and I owe it to myself to get out right now.
My fears around leaving are whether I'll be able to support myself in the way that I want to soon enough, or if I'm able to get a job that's any better than this. But hey, why have I been treating this like it's my end game? Just because it was the first opportunity to arise that seemed viable? I can remember several instances when a few of my friends stopped me from talking about what I'm doing at work to ask if this is what I wanted to do, and I appreciate it a lot because it really got me thinking about why the fuck I'm still here. I keep telling them it's money, and yeah, it is, but I would rather go back to my front-desk job and sit for 3 hours at a time than be in a room of my two married bosses scream-arguing with each other for 30 seconds more.
I don't regret working here, though. I learned a lot for myself and learned a lot about dealing with people, but I think the personal benefits I am able to get from here are reaching their maximum potential.
This entire push and pull of wanting to leave due to the overly dramatic shit that happens and simultaneously having so many things to feel comfortable and good about (i.e. I'm doing a good job in their eyes/I am financially comfortable) is an all too familiar pattern that I KNOW I don't deserve. At all.
The only difference is that I don't and have never loved anyone in this place but myself and that makes it much easier to leave.