When we initially made the decision for me to quit my job and stay home, I finally felt at ease. I felt a sense of peace. I felt right. I felt good. Sure, I knew walking away would be difficult but I could do it, and ultimately, I was going to be at home which is right where I wanted and needed to be.
Dude. This is way harder than I thought it would be. I don’t know how to put it into words but this is a blog and that’s what a blog is. Words. So, I will do my best.
First off, I am a hands on, detail oriented, particular, outspoken, control freak of sorts. I like things to be done a certain way. I crave organization and order. I like to iron my sheets for goodness sake. Yes, it’s that bad. But, I cannot control life. Sometimes God throws us a curve-ball that we never saw coming. There are ups and downs and highs and lows. Breakups and lost jobs and life and death and everything in between. All of it; out of my control. However, at work, I am in control. I can say yes or no and create spreadsheets and flow charts and make decisions and decide on outcomes. Walking away from this job doesn’t just mean letting go of the one area of my life that I can control. It means letting go of things I have had a hand in creating. Letting go of a spreadsheet or a team or a system I helped build. Knowing changes will inevitably happen, but now, I have no say in the changes. I don’t get to have an opinion or a vote. I have to let it go.
These people are my family. I was 24 years old when I started this job. I was a baby. I was going to college, working part time, and I never in a million years thought I would stay there this long or be where I am at today. These people and this job have been there for me the last twelve years. I have no family here. Yes, I have my husband and my son but other than that, these people are my family. They have been there through everything. They were there for me when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer, they were sitting there holding my hand the day she had her kidney transplant. They have been there through the breakups and heartache. They have laughed with me and cried with me. They drove a thousand miles to watch Marcus and I get married. They were literally the first people I texted as I drove to the hospital to give birth to my son and they got their little shot so they could come visit Jack when he was teeny tiny. They made us meals in those first weeks home from the hospital with a newborn. They visited and checked on us. They bought my tiny human Walking Dead onsies. They crocheted homemade blankets. These people love us and we love them. Jack walks into that building now like he owns the place. He laughs and plays and everyone there loves him. He’s like a tiny little customer service mascot (with very crazy hair).
The memories and friendships I have made will stay with me forever. I packed up all of my things on Friday. The tears started coming and I could not stop them. Each drawer of that desk had something in it that made me laugh or smile. Every drawer held memories and scraps of paper and pictures. You accumulate a lot of things in 12 years. This is what 12 years looks like, all crammed into a box. A box that is still sitting in my garage because I can’t bear going through it again quite yet.
I was talking to one of my friends this week about this process. About leaving. She was sharing with me how my departure makes her feel and I was sharing how I felt. I let her know how hard this was to walk away from this family I have created, to walk away from the title I have earned, to leave this behind and start a new chapter. She said something amazing and it has completely resonated with me and changed my outlook. She said, you aren’t just an Assistant Vice President of a department at a bank, Mari. You have other titles. God gave you the title of Wife. He gave you the title of Mother. He is calling you to take on other titles that are far bigger and greater than the one you are having such a hard time leaving behind. Wow.
It is very hard to let go of something you have put your whole heart into. It sure is hard to let go of something you have loved as your own and to let go of something that has held such a high priority in your life. Hmm. God works in such awesome and wonderful ways. In the future, I will let go of children I have loved as my own. I will have to see an empty bed where once a tiny little human whom I loved had slept. I will watch tiny hands wave bye to me for the last time.
Letting go and saying goodbye is hard. But, this time, although I am saying goodbye to something amazing, I think there is something even more amazing in my future.