I Go Back To Say Hello, Did I Make A Mistake?

After quitting my job just over a month ago, I went back to see my old friends and coworkers, but did I make a mistake leaving?

I got a call the other day from my old boss asking how I had been doing. I explained that I’ve been doing well and enjoying this new chapter in my life. He had told me about some new automation that’s been brought into the plant and said that I should stop by to check it out, as well as to say hey and catch up with him and the rest of the guys. That’s what I did today, and it was great to see my old boss and all of the guys I had worked with for so many years.

It’s crazy that just over a month ago I said goodbye to everyone and clocked out for the last time. I spent nearly six years at this job and obviously was able to develop a lot of strong relationships. I was asked by multiple people today if I missed it. The answer was easy, no I do not. There are people that I genuinely missed, but when it comes to missing the job, nahh bro. I worked a very high stress level production job. The owner of the company was an extremely smart man who excelled in acquiring new business. He was also a greedy prick that didn’t give two shits about his employees. Because of how much new business was constantly being flooded into the facility we became a 24/7 operation. We were constantly short handed. You had a better shot at catching a unicorn than you did getting a day off. Employees were constantly getting burnt out, and although the leash on employees was long, turnover was major. People can only hang on for so long when they are required to work their lives away without ever feeling the grace of there being a light at the end of the tunnel.

It’s disheartening to tell a buddy that wants to have a game night over the weekend that you can’t come because you’ve got to work. They might say, “That’s cool, we’ll just do it next weekend.” “Sorry man, I work next weekend too.” It’s depressing when you leave the grocery store, or get off the phone with someone and they offer up one of the classics, like, “I’m so glad its Friday!” or “Have a great weekend!” At least I didn’t struggle with the Monday blues, when everyday is Monday coming back to work after the “weekend” was just another day. What’s devastating however, is having my son look me in the eyes and ask when he can sleep with me. Having to tell him so many times, “Sorry, maybe next weekend buddy.” Missing out on those weekend trips to the beach, or spending a Saturday at the ballpark.

I know that I took a risk in stepping away from a well paying job in pursuit of my dreams, and honestly, there is no certainty that this will work out for me. I’ve maintained saying that I know it will work out, because I have a high level of belief in myself, but at the end of the day, only time will tell. (it will work out) I do know however, that I am no longer a slave to my job. Believe me that I work hard, and spend time everyday working on my writing, but I make my own rules, and answer to no one, but myself, and my girl sometimes….. I no longer have to miss out on a weekend trip with a friend because of a job, and no longer have to prioritize packaging fuckin vegetables over creating a memory with my family.

Driving home today after my visit to the old job I was able to really reflect. I gave six years of my life to a job that went in a different direction from my passion. I had known where my passions lied for quite sometime, but until just a short time ago wasn’t able to take the leap. Working a day job that doesn’t satisfy you emotionally is normal. Getting up, punching a clock, hating your job, and going home, it’s all normal, but it doesn’t have to be. If you know what you want out of this life, fuck what’s normal, go get it. Do whatever it is that you need to do to align yourself with your dreams. If things don’t work out for me, and the money runs out before I’m able to capture my dream, at least I’ll have come out of this with an enlightened realization as to what’s really important. I won’t ever choose again to make more money at the expense of time with my family. Who cares how big your house is if you’re not in it over the weekend. Who cares how nice of a car you drive if it’s parked at work on a Saturday, and not at the middle school where your son has his Tball games.

Now, after all that, I want to make sure that it’s known how grateful I am for the job that I had. There’s so much that I was able to learn, I was developed and shaped into a better and more mature employee as well as man. I was able to buy a home for my son because of the money that I made working so many hours and days. So really, none of this would be possible at this time if I didn’t work that job so hard for so long. Without me selling my home to allow myself some financial stability, I couldn’t have put myself in this situation now. I’m grateful for what that job afforded me, I’m thankful that after leaving I was given the perspective of prioritizing happiness and family over a paycheck, and I’m determined now to give everything I’ve got to making my dreams come true.

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Zach Walling

I’m a dreamer, I’ve made a lot of sacrifices to be able to pursuit my dreams. I sold my home and quit my job to focus on my dream of becoming a writer.