Last Saturday was my last day at work. And it felt weird, having been in employment for nineteen months (after National Service, doing part-time over the semester and summer).
And at the end of our stints, we have this peculiar predilection to think of our (work) experiences as being necessarily positive or negative. To list events and tasks systematically. You look back on your months in the office, and think about the roles and responsibilities you have been involved in. What were the good experiences? The not-so-pleasant moments? Quite silly, isn’t it, because most of us have come to accept that they would always be mixed bags. A rather pedantic attempt at evaluation and reflection, really.
Instead, it seems more meaningful to ask (yourself): how have you grown through this period of labour. How different are you now, compared to when you first started out?
In retrospect, I’ve always felt that I had short-changed myself back in junior college: giving up many things – learning and academic exposure, for instance – while chasing silly commitments and obsessions. Here, as I got back to writing and back in touch with the English curriculum, I felt like I was back in school. Catching up on what I had missed out. Many who have come and gone might not have thought much of the experience (for good reasons, I would presume), but my formative years were plagued by complacency and self-absorption. Here and now, I was always challenged – by deadlines, by expectations, by myself – and I hope I had delivered to the best of my ability.
And I have grown.
So if the company has been kind to you (one that offered me part-time employment in school, even though I was still trudging along in college), why leave? After all, this is also the place that has shown me the importance of teamwork and relationships. The department was a joy to be in, and my colleagues (and superiors) were all amazing ladies.
I guess I had reached a point where I felt I could no longer contribute as much, or function as competently as before. Maybe I have been writing too frequently on the Internet. Maybe I have been distracted by my upcoming commitments. Maybe I had grown too comfortable, and it was time I applied what I have learnt in another domain. It has dawned on me that, at my age, what I need is neither job nor income stability, but exploration and experiences.
So it is time to move on. But I am moving on, grateful, appreciative, and excited. Thank you.