It’s been hard to write about this in part because the narrative is not tidy. But I want to try today, while I’ve still got ahold of some clarity, before I let the relentless noise talk me out of doing it again.
“Doing it” - that is, quit my job without something else lined up.
I’m miserable. There is no support or appreciation of my role, there hasn’t been for some time, but that’s become increasingly and frustratingly more apparent and painful over the past several weeks. I’m drowning in bureaucratic tasks I’m actually quite good at managing, but they bring me no joy. The problems stem from a poverty of leadership and vision at the executive level that I’m powerless to change. In isolation, the job is not so miserable that I couldn’t just muddle through until I found something else, but …
I’m overwhelmed. The regular stressors of life are amplified by the constant threat of daycare quarantines. We are two years in to unreliable, unpredictable childcare. It’s untenable. Last month we had two back-to-back quarantines (five days for him, a day of reprieve, then ten for her). I’m stressed, short-tempered, struggling just to keep us fed and clean. I do think it’s possible that the CDC will change the guidelines after vaccines are (likely) approved for small children later this month, but I’m not particularly hopeful that it will happen quickly. I want to be able to enjoy my family. My baby is seven months old. She is ethereal, ephemeral. She is also almost inexplicably red-headed, and it surprises and then delights me again and again. I will not get this time back. Still, the overwhelm is not so intense that I couldn’t just muddle through until she is a bit older, until the quarantine policies change, but …
Not for this job.
Not for this job.
There is so much more I could say, about my mix of despair and rage at my intractable - though fleeting - limitations, the indefensible institutional failures, the ongoing communal loss. About my fear that a gap in employment would bar me from contention for any fulfilling-but-flexible-enough jobs down the line. About not wanting to abandon my employees, who are all lovely, hardworking people. About the jobs I’ve applied to, the jobs I’ve chosen not to, a promising interview, all the rejections to date. About my discomfort with the privilege that allows me to fret over this choice. About how I really, really need to actively make a choice, and not just let momentum carry me into further misery.
But talking about all that too much just starts feeding into the noise, the noise that makes me lose the plot, as untidy as it already is. So I’ll leave it here.