I’ve agonized over this decision for a very long time (since Oct 10th to be exact)
I’m dealing with some career and health issues that have thus far been shared only with those in a close circle of friends.
As a writer, one of the qualities I have been most admired for is the fact that I’m willing to “open a vein”, be honest even if to my own detriment and write in a manner which the reader can relate to.
Just last week, I received an email from a reader, who said that one of my essays “changed their life”. (I receive a lot of these emails)
The sad thing is, I had recently removed that essay’s direct link from my website because it showed too much vulnerability, too much pain, too much… the real me. (which I have been told over and over by cubicle dweller lower management is “just too much”).
I did this because In early October I left my “day job” (which I never blogged about, nor mentioned on any social networking site, as it’s bad form) because I was dealing with a potentially life threatening medical situation. (one surgery down, one more to go).
It (and the people I was forced to interact with on a daily basis) was sucking the life and soul out of me.
When one is faced with a potentially life threatening diagnosis (so far so good, but am not out of the woods yet), what is really important becomes crystal clear.
I knew I was in trouble prior to this when I received an invite for the department “holiday party” (which would require some after hours interaction). My initial (internal) response, was, “Ugh, I don’t want to have to spend any more time with these people that I am already forced to.”
Yeah, that’s a bad sign.
I won’t go into any details (for a number of reasons) but let it suffice to say, that I wasn’t going to heal while I was under that sort of stress.
So, at the time I needed (alleged) “security”, insurance, money and benefits the most, I quit because I knew that even if it wasn’t cancer, in order to heal from the surgery (now surgeries) I needed to decrease my stress level.
This was not uncalculated.
I knew that if I cashed out a CD and took a bit more out of my retirement so that I could deal with all of this with lowered stress. Stress kills. Hating to get up every morning kills.
In addition to the former day job, I have a magazine contract (writing and photography) and do well with my fire dancing when I actually promote myself.
Perhaps if I push and promote my creative work, I’ll never need a cubicle dwelling day job working for people who find genius (sorry, it’s true but also makes me unpalatable to some folks)/artist/creative/adventurous/non-traditional people distasteful again.
If not, putting my real self out there for “background check purposes” (deeming me undesirable by the insecure/narrow minded) will allow me to find a “day job” that won’t suck the life and soul out of me.
You don’t get anywhere in this life by not taking risks.
I am going to be true to myself and I am going to be true to my readers and supporters.
Expect posts about surgery, biopsies, adopting a Corgi and the “joy” of adult braces (getting everything done before my COBRA benefits run out.)
I’d rather help and interest people than hide who I am.