(Continued from Part I)
For the first year or so, I made it through because the job itself wasn't that bad, it just wasn't something I enjoyed doing. Still, the work was easy, I did it well, and if I had a rough day, I had my fantastic friends.
During the second year, while the job itself became easier, I had a difficult time doing it because I'm an introvert who was stuck answering phones and greeting people who came into the office. To be fair, there weren't that many of either, but as a receptionist, I had to be "on" all the time. And the work itself became monotonous. I really hate monotonous work.
At the same time, the director and I developed a mutual dislike for each other. The working environment became negative and my morale decreased. My fantastic friends helped some, but even their encouragement couldn't improve the rough days. When people asked me how work was, I would tell them I hated it, but I wanted to stick it out for a little while longer because I really adored most of the people I worked with. There's definitely something to be said for working with people who are such good friends, and I wasn't ready to not see them every day.
At the beginning of the third year, my brother died. I hated my job, and I'd just watched my little brother battle cancer. Life is too short to continue to do something I hate, so I began looking for other jobs.
A couple of incidents in September 2015 made going to work almost unbearable. I couldn't use my love for my friends as a reason to stay, and the atmosphere had become so bad that I really wanted to quit my job (without having another in place) or make the director fire me.
Since I couldn't afford to just leave, I started praying to be fired.
There were three of four times after that that I almost walked out of the job. I'd already packed most of my stuff and taken it home so that whatever happened, I'd be ready to leave in a hurry. But I didn't just leave because I didn't want to make the situation more difficult for my supervisor than it already was. I was more worried about her being swamped than I was about my own mental health.
On December 7, I cried as soon as I got into the office. I told the friend I was closest to at the office that I wouldn't just quit was because I didn't want to create more work for everyone else. She said, "Steph, as much as I love you and don't want to see you leave, I know you hate it here and you need to do what's best for you. Don't worry about us and don't worry about creating more work for anyone else."
On December 8, I woke up dreading going to work -- again -- but with the feeling that it would be my last day. I really believe that God told me to finish up a few tasks and clean up a couple of documents, and I did so. I left files in order with directions on how to find computer files that would be used routinely. When the director requested a 3 pm meeting with me, I knew he was going to fire me and let some people know what was going on. When he fired me at 3:15, I let the same people know that it had happened, packed up the rest of my stuff, and left. I knew I'd done my best given the circumstances and I left my area more organized than I'd found it.
So here's the point:
Loyalty can be misplaced. Sometimes severely. It's good to be loyal, but be loyal to people and not things. A job is just a job. Stuff is just stuff. People are living, breathing beings with feelings that can be hurt. Make sure that the people you choose to be loyal to are worth that loyalty. If they become unworthy, back away slowly. Be nice, but don't insist on remaining loyal to someone who won't be loyal to you.
You don't have to hang onto people who are hurting you or things that don't fit.
And on that note, I'm going to go buy some ankle socks.
What do you think about loyalty? Have I missed my calling a true Hufflepuff, or is this pretty spot-on?