Let me elaborate the whole story behind my journey to Seattle and back. As you know, on a lovely morning of October 18th we left this little town because I had a job lined up for me in Seattle. It was decided that the teenager and I would go there, settle down (to a degree), and in eight months the husband would join us. It sounded as a perfect plan, but on that morning I didn't feel any excitement. Something was squeezing my chest real hard, and no deep breath would relieve it.
I blamed the tiredness from packing, yard sale, all emotional things that came with moving. However, four days of driving through a beautiful terrain of South, West, and Pacific Northwest did not make it easier.
Upon our arrival to Seattle I was smiling, hugging and happy to see my daughter, our friends, the city that is our home away from home. But that squeezing in my chest never went away.
From the road I called my friend Lisa, and pour in her ear all my feelings, that I was afraid to share with anybody else. Once she said to listen not only to my mind, but to my heart too. Easier said than done as my heart was a mess during my trip, and load of mixed emotions filled it. Which one should I listen to?
My first day at work was Wednesday. It wasn't a new-new job for me: two years ago I worked there, and I loved what I was doing, and I loved people I worked with. I was lucky to get back not only to the same office, but same team and same boss, who is one of the best bosses I've ever had.
So that Wednesday morning, after completing an usual HR routine, I went to a mandatory training off sight. I was welcomed by smiles and hugs, but despite happy emotions I was ready to cry. To be polite I forced my lips into slight smile, even though my eyes could show some horror in it. What I saw in that room was scary to me: almost all my coworkers behind their smiles had a great deal of tiredness in their eyes and signs of exhaustion on their faces.
When I came to the office, the usual semi-introduction took place: getting my cubic, assignments, transferring cases, and more smiles and hugs from co-workers. When I walked through the office I was struck by a thought: what I see now was me two years back, and soon it would be me with tired eyes and exhaustion on my face. "Am I ready for that? And do I really want to do it?" - were two thoughts that came trough my mind for a split of the second, shamefully erased by words: "responsibility", "must", and etc.
That night, when I came to my daughter's apartment, I cried. I cried so hard that my kids got scared and called my husband. They said to him that they've never seen me crying like this. I think, they never seen me crying at all. After long, weeping (on my end) talk to my husband, I had a not too long, weeping again (and again on my end), talk to my kids. It was clear for them (not for me yet), that I don't like the job anymore, hence I should't do it. My daughter said that they want their mother (me in this case) to be happy. Then teenager added: "there's nothing wrong to change your mind. It is much worse to get stuck with something that makes you unhappy, and depressed". (Oh dear, when did my kids grew up?!) At this moment I stopped crying and stretched my lips into some form of smile. Then they both added: "Make up your mind, just don't cry. Whatever you decide to do, we'll support you."
That night wasn't easy, thoughts kept me awake, and a tear or two wet my pillow now and then. What was the right thing to do? Was it to listen to my heart (for the first time in my life), or to be a responsible person as I always was and to do it because I must?
The moment I sent an e-mail to my boss, I felt as a huge weight a size of a mountain fell off my shoulders and the squeezing in my chest disappeared as someone pooled a cork and relieved all the pressure. I heard people describing such moments, but never before experienced one myself. It was the moment when the inner peace and calmness replaced the racing in panic thought "what if..."
Taking that job was a rational and financially comforting decision to make, but it didn't fit my emotional "bill" anymore. My heart doesn't care much about the money or luxury, but it does care about my family's well-being, a doze of happiness now and then, my personal development, that I put on hold by making only rational and logical decisions all those years.
I have no regrets for changing my mind whatsoever; every mile of that journey was taking me through the transforming experience. It feels as my mind and heart have synchronized, and now it flow in the same direction...
Don't get me wrong, our life is not an even and paved road: we have our challenges, road bumps, detours. Nevertheless, as Marilyn Monroe said: "keep your head high, keep your chin up, and most importantly, keep smiling, because life's a beautiful thing and there's so much to smile about.”
P.S. I have no formal (or informal, for that matter) education in English (click here and here to read more). If you see a mistake that bothers you, please, send me a friendly note to my e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org)