a goodbye haiku

Friday, June 20, 2014

I’m sitting in my half-empty cubicle* on my last day of work at the job I’ve held for six months now. First, for those of who don’t know, I will tell you (vaguely) about my job. I work in customer service. I answer phone calls and enter orders, listen to angry customers, solve their problems and tell them their problems can’t be solved.

This post could be a lot of things. It could be a rant, a list of things not to say to that customer service representative on the other line. It could be about realizing that humans suck. That people are horrible and mean and rude and indifferent. (Most of all, indifferent.) Believe me, I have written that post many times in my mind.

But that’s not all this job is, and it would be too easy for me to lean on that. So instead, this post could be about all the ways I’ve become a better person from working here. It could be about learning patience, about realizing how many people there are with their own stories and their own little worlds. It could be about how the kindness of one person, even if it’s just a single polite phone call, can set the tone for a day. It could be about accepting your situation, about letting harsh words and bad feelings wash over you, about staying calm and solid.

But the crappy days exist too and as much as I would like to be inspiring, write things that bolster you up and make you appreciate your situation, I’m not here for that either. I’m here to try to peel the surfaces back and try to understand what it means to lose this job.

The truth is, this job has contributed greatly to the small amounts of depression I’ve felt the past few months. It was killing my soul little by little and making me want to writhe out of my own skin. That’s a dramatic statement, but these last few months this has consumed most of my life. Emotions are dramatic. Also I refuse to beat down my feelings into a small manageable sentence like: I was sad.

I am not meant for this. The funny thing is, when I was graduating, I said, “I just want a job. Any job. Not even art related. I just want to go to work, and come home, and have it just be a job.” Well, poof! I got that, and I hated it. I need to think. To make things. To write. To work with other people. Collaboration, I found I missed so much. To discuss.

It is hard to give up a steady paycheck, the prospect of healthcare (I was only a temp and therefore didn’t qualify for healthcare) and the routine of work. But if I stayed, all the best parts of me would have surely died. So here I am. On the precipice. I don’t know what’s ahead. I don’t know how I will make money or survive. I only know I couldn’t survive here, and so I’m leaving.

It's a day for celebrations.

*on break, of course. 


  1. I've been trying to work up the courage to leave my day job or to at least find a different one that allows me to either be creative all the time or work around creative tools. I applaud you for taking those steps, Brittany. I hope I someday have that kind of courage.

    1. The next steps for me will be really important. I have a terrible knack for not believing my dream are able to be accomplished. Trying to take the right steps towards working through that and trusting.

  2. Out of college I worked for corporate america. The "living wage" was great, but, oddly, all the lifers there were dead. Yes, before you can ride a horse to greener fields you must break the horse's spirit. I didn't last a year. But it was a priceless experience; for ever since I've been working for a nonprofit--working on behalf of the health and growth of the human spirit, and it's been a rewarding life.

    1. I couldn't have imagined being there long-term, hence why I'm leaving now. Although even six months was too long in my opinion. (I wish I had the courage to leave sooner.) But it definitely was invaluable in teaching me what I'm incapable of doing. Hoping I can look back on my life and call in rewarding, it's wonderful that you can. What a great thing to be able to say.

  3. Oh, girl. I know that feeling. I left a job at a pawn shop after 2 days, because I hated myself SO MUCH when I was there. And I worked in a jewelry store doing data entry for something like 9 months, which left me bitter, depressed, and with significant weight gain (see: depression). I was so glad when the economy tanked and they let me go. I definitely have moments of wishing I was back in a 9-5 job, for the security, paycheck, and dependability, but I know myself. I know I'd go crazy behind a desk all day. As much as I dislike juggling all the things I do, it keeps me busy and active. You will do great things--I have no doubt in that. Trust in yourself and trust in the people who love you.

  4. So well said, Brittany. Love this post. And go you!


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