I finally quit my job.
Yesterday was an interesting day. I had to talk myself, one last time, into pulling the trigger. If you are following along, you had a front row seat for that pep-talk in the morning before I went to work. It was a much easier thing to be excited about on vacation, or even contemplate with various people than actually going through with it. That is probably because, at the end of the day, I am the only person responsible for my choices and actions and anyone else I talk to, just does not have the same perspective or interest in the situation.
So it was me alone who walked into my office and pulled up the resignation letter I started over a week ago on my computer. It was me who adjusted the dates and re-calculated four weeks and printed it. It was me who walked down to the printer to grab it before anyone else was at the printer for any other reason. I signed the letter and slipped it in-between pages of my notebook. I knew at some point in the day, I would be needing that if plan B did not work out.
Plan B was the sabbatical.
My manager was working from home, ironically, and I was kind of disappointed because I knew since he was not going to be in the office to have a face to face conversation, that I would end up waiting even longer, but about 11:30 in the morning, his manager, our COO and my former manager came looking for me to have a conversation. I grabbed my notebook and was ready.
I followed her into the HR persons office and saw the phone on speaker on the table, I knew this was the conversation I had been waiting for. The HR person explained to me that they would not be able to honor my request for a sabbatical because it’s a small company and they can’t afford to have a key resource out for that amount of time. It was as I had expected. She even went on to say that if I wanted that time, the best thing would be for me to chose to leave the company. That’s when I made my move.
I said “I understand”, and pulled the letter out from between the pages of my notebook and handed it to her. I explained that I had given it careful consideration and that I knew the sabbatical was probably a long shot. They immediately zero’d in on the dates in the letter and verbally let my manager know what the letter said.
We had a brief conversation after that and I did a pretty good job keeping it together despite feeling that swell of emotion starting to rise. I knew I was going to loose it, so I had to be brief. The exchange was very positive. My COO said she would offer any help she could once I was ready to start working again and the HR person actually offered up the possibility that I could come back at some point. That was one of the things I had considered, briefly, but more as a contractor or something and not as a full time employee. They are going to need people, so it only makes sense they would want to keep that door open.
After that, I went immediately to the dev area to get Sam, who is one of my closest friends at work, and her and I went outside. That’s when I had my emotional release. It’s difficult to take that leap of faith and part of me feels very dedicated to my company and the people I help, so quitting sort of feels like I’m letting people down. That’s tough for me because I am a people pleaser. Sam and I talked for a good 10 or 15 minutes and I regained my composure. She offered to meet me for a drink after work, and I gratefully accepted. We definitely had more to talk about.
Anyway, the rest of the work day was strange. I knew they would send out an internal email to the company and I had to cycle through the building to talk to a few key folks I wanted to tell in person before that. After that, I pretty much worked at my desk through lunch and the rest of the day. A few folks reached out to me with questions, but not many. I’m sure as the next four weeks goes by, I’ll end up having conversations with a lot of people.
It’s going to be weird, finishing out these four weeks and transitioning to not having to work. I’ve been working since I was 18 years old, so not working will be an interesting experiment.
When I quit I expected to feel relieved and happy and free, but that wave has not hit me yet. Perhaps as we roll into the holiday weekend and I have more time to think about it, that set of feels will start to rise. In any case, it does feel good the trigger has finally been pulled. It really has been a long time coming and though it’s tough, I know in my heart, it is one of the best decisions I have ever made.
On to Tomorrow,