I wrote this in my journal this morning, and was just going to keep this private. But I realized as I was writing that these are thoughts I’d like to share—because leaving a place of employment for a new job comes with a whole slew of emotions. My last day is tomorrow, and I am definitely feeling the emotions bubble up. So I’m opening the pages of my journal to you as I process these emotions.
The announcement was finally made yesterday that I am leaving my current job. The most surprising after effect was when an agent called and cried. In the moment, I was surprised because I hadn’t realized she cared so deeply. But in hindsight, I think it’s because it’s one more huge change in a series of changes no one wanted or expected (we just experienced a merger, and while they promised nothing would change, almost everything has). And I feel terrible to abandon everyone at a time like this, because I do know that I was an anchor in this uneasy time, something they could hold on to in rocky waters. But now I’m abandoning ship, and they’re left wondering if they’re going to be lost at sea, or if another anchor will be in place.
I keep assuring everyone that the next person will absolutely be capable of taking over what I’ve done, but I can’t know that for sure. Here’s what is in my mind though—I was never a good fit for real estate marketing, I just knew a little more than they did with the skills I have, so it kept me and everyone else afloat. But every time they brought in a new agent, I worried that the jig would be up, that I’d be found out, that they’d realize I was a complete fraud doing work that anyone could do.
So when I tell them that the next person will take care of them, it’s because literally anyone with some marketing sense could take over and probably do a much better job than I have. This was not a job where I built new things. It was one where I just kept greasing the wheel and hoping nothing broke down.
But it was also one where I formed good friendships.
It was hard at first. I felt on the outside for a while, because I’m not super social and tend to like staying in my safe little antisocial bubble. In the first year and a half, I had a bit of a falling out with one agent team, and I also felt like the odd person out as I was excluded from social gatherings from the “in” crowd at the office.
But then the pandemic happened. Now that everything was on Zoom, I was finally able to be social without ever leaving my house. A group of agents hosted a regular Zoom night where we basically drank while on camera. But because we were all starving for human interaction, this became a lifeline in an uneasy time. It was a hit of normalcy when everything felt abnormal. I got to know the agents better. Even more, I felt like I belonged to something special. And when we came back to the office, I was greeted by people I knew and genuinely cared for.
That feeling has grown since that time, expanding to include everyone in the office. The people in this office became my family, even the ones I had difficult relationships with. Part of it was because I got to know everyone’s human side. I got to know them, and also their families. And they got to know mine. They know my husband by name, they know my kids. One agent helped my stepson purchase his first home. Another agent took my son under her wing at our employee appreciation celebration and made him feel special, and that he was doing a good job helping.
The other part was because my confidence grew. When I get to know people, I feel comfortable in my own skin and am authentic. When I walk into the office everyday, I walk in as me, Crissi, completely myself. I know I am accepted, that I don’t need to put on any figurative masks to fit in (just literal ones in the face of a pandemic).
When I leave this job, this is what I’m leaving behind – the friendships, the family, the place where I can be my true, goofy, authentic self and be fully accepted.
Of course, when I start work at my new job, there is an opportunity to create something new in the form of work relationships. I have no idea what the work environment is there, and I have a fully open mind about what can happen. In some ways, I think it might even be easier. But that’s because of everything I’ve learned at this job, how I’ve grown, and the experience I’ve had about what can happen when you let go of insecurities and embrace relationships.
I won’t miss the work. Some, sure. But it wasn’t work I was passionate about. My new job has a focus on editing, writing, and a few tech things I love doing, and I’m super excited to be the person in this role because these are my specialties.
What I will miss are the people, who made the workplace feel like home. Regardless of what I’m walking into with this new job, there will never be another place like the one I’m leaving behind.
2 thoughts on “Honesty Files: What I’m leaving behind”
They’re a good group of people. And they love you. I especially love that they brought you flowers for me. 🙂