Joy is the most vulnerable emotion we experience.
-Dr. Brene Brown
I recently started a new job. My friends keep asking, “How’s the job going?” My reply is always the same, “I think I really like it, but I don’t want to jinx myself.” Although that is the truth, I never feel right dismissing or downplaying my joy, but I need protection. I need to feel safe, unbreakable.
6 months prior…
I remember the tears rolling down my cheeks as soon as I closed my car door. I was being bullied at work. I drove home and slept.
One day I was called into the office and given the option of resigning or being fired. I resigned. All I could think of was my husband. He was going to shoulder the financial burdens alone. I felt like a horrible wife, a horrible mother, and a bad employee. But, I also felt relief. I didn’t have to be bullied and mistreated any longer and I wasn’t sad about that at all. And, I knew deep down on the inside that God was going to take care of it. Anything the devil meant for bad, God was going to turn it around for my good. I knew that. I believed that. But, it didn’t mean there wouldn’t be some adjustments at home. My husband gave me 3 months.
During this transition, I didn’t know what to do. Should I look for a job and risk being bullied again? The thought of that was paralyzing and brought tears to my eyes. Should I focus on my dream job? That’d be awesome, but we need income now. I enjoy going on playdates with my daughter and having the house clean and dinner on the stove when my husband gets home from work. Should I be a SAHM? No, that would drive me insane. There were so many different directions I could have taken, but instead of racking my brain about it, I just kept praying. Lord, you know what the next step is. You know where my next job is. You know the income we need to make to get out of debt. I want to follow you. Show me the way. And, let my husband be at peace with your decision.
A couple months in we realized that we weren’t starving or having to sell our bodies for shelter. How could this be? Our income was truncated significantly. We crunched the numbers and realized that my income had been going to gas, childcare, gym memberships, and other things we “needed.” After it was all said and done, I wasn’t bringing home that much money.
Maybe I should stay at home…
But….we had debt. And, one of our top 3 goals was to return to the mainland debt-free. So, although we could live (and play a little) on my husband’s income, we weren’t able to pay off debt in the way we would have liked.
That still didn’t motivate me to apply for a job. Lord, help me.
I remembered hoping to be sick on Monday morning so that I didn’t have to go to work. Whenever I would run back to my car for something or go out to lunch, I basked in the fresh air and sunshine, contemplating leaving and never coming back. I remember being yelled at and bullied. I remember my voice shaking as I tried to take up for myself while not stepping on any toes and still behaving in a Christian way. I remembered feeling hopeless as all of my attempts at handling this situation properly kept leading back to cultural differences that I couldn’t help. It was a nightmare I did not want to relive.
My girlfriends prayed.
My husband prayed.
While in limbo, I decided to start really pursuing my “dream” job. You’re reading it right now. 😉 Woman, Live! is just a small piece of the “I was here; I made a difference,” impact I want to have on women all around the world. In the world of entrepreneurship, you don’t wear just one hat. So, I started to prepare myself: watching lots of the OWN network,TED talks, ordering books, creating a career journal, blogging more, and letting people know what I was interested in and where I needed help. <–That last one is HUGE! (We’ll talk about that in another post!)
One day I received a call from someone that used to occasionally help out at my old job. She said her job was hiring and put me in touch with HR. I’ve been working there almost 2 months now. I was hired as on-call, but it feels more like part-time since they’re scheduling me every week. And, we’re not on the same schedule every week so if I want to attend a career development class or my daughter’s Thanksgiving potluck at school, I can block that time off. It’s walking distance from my husband’s job. We had lunch together today. 🙂 That was a big eye-opener because my lunches used to consist of a 45 minute nap. My energy was extremely drained. I could never get enough rest. I didn’t correlate that with the stress I was under at my old job…not until today. But, you want to know the best part of my job?
I’ve learned so much in such a short amount of time. And, I feel appreciated. They keep saying, “We want you to be here full-time,” and “We love when you’re here.” Not that I live and breath their compliments, but it does feel good to know that people want you around.
So, let’s recap, shall we?
1. Bullied on job. Dreamed of quitting, but quitting wasn’t an option.
2. Forced to resign.
3. Now what? (Sigh) God will provide.
4. Started working on my dream job.
5. Blog begins to pick up traffic. Begin receiving invitations to career development classes, etc.
6. Was recommended and sought after for a position I never applied for.
5. The schedule permits me to continue pursuing my dream career, spend time with my daughter, and show up for special events and my husband’s work/daughter’s school. And, we’re paying ff debt like never before!
God worked it out.
I don’t know if I could have planned this better if I tried! But, the beauty of it all is that I didn’t try. I just kept praying, believing and listening. And, when I downplay how much I enjoy my new job/situation, I’m minimizing God’s glory. My story is a testimony that when we truly cast our cares on him, pray without ceasing, and believe in the promises He made to never forsake us, He will pour out a blessing too large to hold with 2 hands! I used to stifle my excitement with what if questions such as, “What if my new co-workers mistreat me?” or “What if they find a reason to fire me at this new job?” but, I’ve finally come up with an answer. If something goes awry on this new job, that’ll be a hard blow to take BUT the God that provided the old job and this new job will provide again. He doesn’t get discouraged. He doesn’t grow weary. His promises are everlasting. And, He is working it out for my good.
I’m in a great place right now. I have time with my family, my husband and I are paying off debt (and enjoying some much-needed date nights), and I’m able to continue serving you through my writing.
No matter what happens tomorrow, God was good to me today. And, he’ll be good to me tomorrow.
Have you ever shied away from joy because it felt too good to be true or you thought it might end quickly? Have you ever not shared your testimony because of the hurt or shame behind it?
If you have some time, check out Dr. Brene Brown’s talk on joy and vulnerability. I think it will really bless you!
If you enjoyed this blog post, please share, comment & like!
God bless, ladies!