I didn’t start this blog just to complain about how my job was smothering me. I started this blog to document my journey of finding something that better aligns with my values, skills, interests and goals. I started this blog because maybe something I wrote about what led to my resignation resonates with you. I started this blog because I want to create and be a part of a community of talented individuals who are searching and striving for the same thing: a job that makes us feel good about ourselves and a job that serves our community.
A lot of bad things have happened in our world within the last 12 months, but one thing that hurt me the most was hearing about the children who were murdered while they were at school. I was overwhelmed by my emotions, and I know that many other parents were as well. I was not directly affected by what had happened, but I thought about the parents who lost their kids that day and all I could do was cry and pray for them. And like every other time I hear of something awful happening, I thought wow, this world is pretty f*@!#$ up.
But then I saw some comments on Facebook that kind of slapped me in the face. We can’t let bad events make us feel helpless and hopeless. Yes, there are a lot of messed up things going on in our world, but is there a way to change this?
Being just one person, I know I can’t change anything. But God did put me here for a reason, and God put you here for a reason, too. If we collaborate and work together, we can make positive contributions that may help to create a better community, a better country and maybe even a better world.
Now, with this reflection in the back of my mind and dealing with what was going on in my work and home life, I began to make some other connections that helped me to finally have the guts to send in my resignation.
Prior to sending in my resignation, my husband and family listened to my ranting for several months. I went on and on about how I hated my job, how I didn’t have enough time with my kids during the week, and how I had no time for myself. At first I felt like no one understood the pain that I was feeling. And I didn’t want my husband, family or colleagues to think that I was lazy or giving up or going crazy. I felt alone for a long time. Mainly because I thought that leaving my job would make me a quitter, and I thought that I would be letting my family down. I wanted so badly to feel like someone understood me, but I realized that I was the one who didn’t completely understand where my pain was coming from. Rant after rant after rant, something finally surfaced.
I realized that I was so unhappy because my job was going nowhere for me. I was stuck.
At home, my number one duty is being a mom, and I love being a mom. I never knew how much love I could have for someone else until I had my first child. I never knew it was possible to love someone else just as much as I loved my son until I had my daughter. And I never knew how difficult and rewarding it could be to care for someone else more than yourself until I became a parent. Although being a mom is effortless when both kiddos are laughing and loving you for chasing them with a stuffed Yoda saying, “Catch you, I will.” Being a mom is also exhausting when both kiddos are screaming like someone is beating them with a belt because you asked them to try just one bite of their meal that they have already decided is “icky” because it has a sauce or doesn’t come with a sauce or looks like poop or something. But because my husband and I love our kids more than anything else, we find ways to get through these challenges, and we add a win to the board when everyone survives dinner without crying or banging our own heads on the table. We take it one day at a time. Some days are easier than others, but all days end with me loving my children more.
Being a mom has made me realize that I have the power to raise two children to do good in the world. This is a huge responsibility — and it’s scary to think that I have this sort of responsibility — but this gives me a purpose. Being a mom has also made me realize that I have a lot of flaws. This isn’t easy to accept, but this makes me want to be a better person for myself, for my husband, for my kids and for God. I learn something new every day as a mom. Some days I have a better understanding of my children’s personalities and behaviors, other days I have a better understanding of who I am and who I want to be.
What does all of this motherhood talk have to do with starting this blog, collaborating with others and having a job that makes me feel good about myself and serves my community?
Work can be effortless at times when you enjoy what you are doing. It can also be challenging, but these challenges are worth it when you gain new skills, earn achievements that are important to you and see how your work is having a positive impact on others. When work is effortless and challenging for the wrong reasons, it can make you feel stuck and hopeless. And this can poison you.
After months of feeling like I was barely surviving managing work and home life, I realized I was so frustrated and miserable because I wasn’t learning new skills at work and I didn’t have time after meeting production goals to participate in extra activities at work that would allow me to learn new skills. I couldn’t see a career path where I was at, and I couldn’t see how my work was having a positive impact on others. I felt like I was at a dead-end. I felt like I had no purpose outside of my home life, which made being away from my children the majority of the week even more painful.
A few weeks ago, my son told me to stop crying because he wanted me to be happy. My son is 3. His words were a wake-up call. I needed to make a change. I need to turn this dead-end into a new path.
It’s time to find my purpose. I don’t care if it’s big or small. I don’t care if I find it right away. At least I know now that I was no longer on the right path and I can redirect myself. And I know I am not the only person who wants purpose. I am not the only person who has left a job to find another job that is more fulfilling. I am not the only mother who has decided to leave a job or to work less hours to focus more on her children and being a mother she wants her children to look up to. I want to learn about how others are pursuing their “dream job” or applying their interests and talents at work. I want to learn about how others are trying to make a positive change in our world through their work or personal time. I want to learn about how other moms are living, not just surviving.
I created this blog because I want to hold myself accountable for finding my purpose and finding a job that is more meaningful. I also created this blog because I need some guidance, and I know that I am not alone.
Do you know what your purpose is?