A Year Can Change A Lot: Part 4

72 comments

Last week, I left you with this cliffhanger:

After the wedding, the honeymoon, and the graduation, I thought that our life would actually return to normalcy.

Boy was I mistaken.

Little did I know that within just a couple weeks, we would be packing our bags and hitting the road for another huge life change.

And then I didn’t get around to posting Part 4 on the weekend like I said I would. Oops! ;) I finally got a chance to sit down and do some serious writing.

This is definitely one of the best posts I have ever written so…

Sit back, relax, get some popcorn, and enjoy the next installment…

~~~

Missed Part 1, Part 2, or Part 3?

After we got back from the Honeymoon, it was back to work.

I remember not even having time to unpack my suitcase for over a week. I was suffering from the post-grad school, post-wedding, and post-honeymoon blahs big time.

When I got back to work in late September 2008, I found that instead of easing back into everything, my work had piled up while I was away and things that were supposed to be taken care of were not. It was extremely stressful because I now had 3 weeks of work to catch up on and do the normal assignments that were being thrown on my desk.

On the home front, Eric and I had planned to sell our condo as soon as I was done school. The only reason why we decided to move to Toronto was because we wanted a place that was close to my school while I was doing my Masters.

With the approaching recession and forecasting of a condo market crash in our area, we knew we had to sell fast.

During the time that we lived in the condo, there must have been over 50 condo buildings go up in our area. We were reading all these stories about condos that were being built and had huge vacancy rates. This was absolutely unheard of only 2 years ago when we purchased it. Financial forecasters were predicting a condo market crash, with huge price drops in the average price of units. We knew we had to sell now or we could stand to lose a lot of money.

So we got to work. Every night after work for a week, we worked on staging our condo to make it look as appealing as possible. We finished painting, removed a ton of furniture and put it in storage, added plants, etc. We basically moved out 50% of our junk to make a very small space look much more spacious.

We met with our realtors and our condo went up on the market immediately. She warned us that our condo could take a while to sell because she was not having the quick sales in our area like she used to.

It was now clear- the recession was hitting and hitting hard. We knew we had to put it up on the market before the cold winter months hit.

We had a lot of activity the first 2 days and on the 3rd day we were presented with two offers. We accepted the second offer and just couldn’t believe our luck. Within a week, our lives had now undergone a huge change once again. The buyers wanted a quick closing date, so we had to start packing immediately and were out within the next month.

During this time, the stress at work started to get worse. As a way to escape, I started up Oh She Glows on October 31, 2008.

It was such a great release for me and I found myself coming alive whenever I wrote. Unexpectedly, it was also helping me with my struggles with disordered eating. I found that writing about my experiences was extremely therapeutic for me and actually helped me commit to a healthy lifestyle rather than letting the stress get the best of me.

I wrote, and wrote, and wrote my little heart out.

On the work front, I told my boss that we had sold our condo and were moving. My plan was to stay at the job until I found something else that was closer to home.

Where would our new home be?

Eric’s parents had their house on the market for almost 2 years with no bites. The recession combined with a less desirable area for commuters, made the house a tough sell. The house also needed a lot of repairs and renovations, which discouraged many home buyers.

Thankfully, his parents offered to let us live in the house until we found something else. We moved in in November 2008 and were very happy to have a place to stay. How humbling it was to be newly married and living with the in laws! ;)

Things were a bit crazy to say the least- our stuff was still in storage and I was now enduring 4 hours of commuting each day. I was absolutely miserable.

Of course, I couldn’t really talk about my situation much on the blog for privacy reasons, but November and December 2008 were two very, very low months in my life.

I was miserable every single day I woke up.

I often cried on long commutes home, getting home late and exhausted only to go to bed an hour later to start it all over again. The stress of the job kept getting worse as did my commutes during the brutal winter season.

During this time, Oh She Glows started to take off. I was receiving positive feedback and I was feeling inspired. I had so much encouragement from my readers and it gave me such hope for the future. Looking back, I now see that my blog got me through one of the hardest times of my life. After a crappy day at work, I could write out my thoughts and start to feel a bit better about things.

My blog also gave me confidence that I deserved to be happy with what I was doing. I never had that before. All I thought about was what I should be doing, what would give me the biggest paycheck, and what others would think.

I started to plan for success:

During the time at my research job, I was planning behind the scenes. I knew I had to be smart about my income, so I pinched my pennies for the entire time. I didn’t go out to eat, didn’t buy clothing, nothing. I opened a high-interest savings account and saved over 60% of my income. I knew I needed some sort of cushion should I need it.

It was the best thing I ever did.

After this post in particular after a bad day at work, the wheels in my head started to turn.

Below is one of my favourite posts I have ever written. It was purely from the heart. I have to share this post with you today so you understand a better grasp of where I was coming from. You may have noticed that I have chosen not to reveal too much detail about the job. I decided to do that to protect the privacy of the organization as well as the workers there. Maybe some day in a ‘tell all’ book perhaps. ;)

Here is the post I wrote back in December after a horrible, horrible day at work:

Good evening everyone!

I fully intended to start this post with Celebrity Beauty Secrets, but I had to listen to my heart and vent for a few lines (paragraphs) first. Please bear with me…

Boy, did I have one of those days at work. Everything was going wrong at work and I was in tears today it got so bad. I was pulled in a million directions at once and no matter what I did, no one was happy with me.

I feel like I am in an abusive relationship.

Something has gotta give…

It got me thinking a lot about my tendency (and many others I know in life) to sacrifice my own happiness for the sake of something else- like a steady income. I know so many people who stay in jobs where they are unhappy for years because they are afraid to leave something secure. It is really a horrible way to live.

Many people in my life know that I have passions outside of what I am currently doing (baking/cooking, health/fitness, etc), and I am trying to pursue this with my blog, but it is really tough when 12 hours of your day is devoted toward something that makes you in tears and mentally and emotionally drained at the end of the day.

Some days I come home and I have nothing left to give to the people who matter the most to me in life.

I have no energy to give to Eric, to pick up the phone and call a loved one, or to look forward to the next day. All I feel like doing after a day like today is lying down on the couch in a foul mood.

The big question is- why do I put up with something that makes me unhappy? Why do we as humans accept a crappy job and then dedicate half of our days to it?

I am able to appreciate the opportunities it has given me- like co-authoring a book chapter- however, symbols of success in my field (i.e., publications, conference presentations, etc) are merely fluff, much like the degrees and thesis that sit on my bookshelf.

These symbols of success represent the blood and sweat of what I do each day (research).

However, symbols of success are merely that- a status symbol of something you think will make you happy once it’s there, but they really don’t.

What matters is that you are happy with who you work with and what you are doing. That you have people who support you and are a positive influence on your career. This is the good stuff, and I think without it we will never be truly happy in our jobs.

We need to feel like what we are doing is consistent with our personal goals and aspirations and that our efforts are truly recognized and appreciated.

We’ve all heard the stories on Oprah about women who have a mid-life crisis and finally decide, at 50, to pursue their life long dream. They claim that they worked in the same miserable job for 30 years, and damnit, they are sick of putting everyone else before them. Women do it in their relationships too. I admire anyone who can do it, because it is scary as hell to think of leaving security in today’s uncertain world.

Many people in my life know that one of my dreams is to open a bakery.

Will it ever happen?

I wish I could say for certain that it will. There is so much uncertainty with the market and the recession right now, how could I ever leave a secure job where I am making good money? Sure, I’ve seen the stories of women who quit their job and went back to school or opened their own business to achieve the greatest success of their lives, but what about the ones who quit and then can’t find a job and have trouble making ends meet?

These are all the things that I think about.

I am not a pessimist by any means, although this post may come across that way. I am actually a realist. I think about all sides to something before I make a decision. I have never been an impulsive individual who throws caution to the wind and follows her heart, although I often wish I was.

So what has to give before someone stops accepting a negative influence in their life?

When is the breaking point determined?

How unhappy in a job (or situation) does one have to be before they say enough is enough?

Obviously it varies by the person. I often worry that if I left a secure job that others would look down upon me for being a quitter or shake their head and say to themselves, Many people can’t even find a job and you quit a good one. How could you?

Yes, the need to please is still something that is very much ingrained in me, and is something I hear slowly dies as we mature into wise and experienced women. I am looking forward to that.

Have you ever been in a job or situation that you were unhappy with but felt that you couldn’t get out? What prompted you to stay and what prompted you to finally change your situation?

Being someone who is so concerned about well-being and health it still eludes me why I would put up with anything that clearly contradicts these goals.

WOW.

Had major chills reading this.

Stay tuned for Part 5…

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{ 66 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kristin October 1, 2009

Still leaving us with a cliff hanger! You are such and inspiration!

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2 Shelly October 1, 2009

Great post! I can’t believe you had the energy to go through all of that at once and get up every morning! I hope you can look back and acknowledge that while is stunk, you are one super strong lady! You should be proud of yourself for two things- 1) That you had the strength and dedication to do all that, and 2) That you had the insight to determine that it wasn’t worth it. I can’t wait for Part 5. :)

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3 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is October 1, 2009

I am loving this so much. Making me feel more postive about my current situation!

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4 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is October 1, 2009

I also practically teared up at the reason you started your blog. That is one of the reasons I started my blog – to escape. And I also feel more alive. Wow.

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5 Leah @ Simply Fabulous October 1, 2009

It is so so hard to be living something and have to try to keep on going. I know the decision you made is one you’ll be thankful for forever.

From all the hype from the wedding & honeymoon I have heard a lot of women feeling the blues once its all said and done. Considering you were engaged for almost a year its like once everything is done you ask yourself “what am I left with?”

Other than a lovely Husband but you know what I mean??
I often ask myself…
What now???

I’m still trying to figure it out!! I’m so glad you did.

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6 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

I can to relate to what you are feeling now that the wedding is over. I think it is totally natural for many people to feel that way and to ask those questions. I know you will figure it out. Just the fact that you are questioning things is the first very important step!

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7 caitlin October 1, 2009

post wedding blues are very common – i had them!

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8 Runeatrepeat October 1, 2009

Wow that was a bad commute! So glad you don’t have to do that anymore!

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9 Sarah @ The Foodie Diaries October 1, 2009

You’re amazing. And so, so inspiring. I’m at a place where I’m trying to figure out what to do with my life–and it’s a constant struggle between what I should do, and what I want to do. I’m trying to blend the two and mold a career that I will love and that will also be intellectually stimulating, curiosity-quenching and, hopefully, financially rewarding. I’m so happy you’ve figured out a way to do what you love. It really is SO important.

XO
Sarah

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10 Lindsey @ Sound Eats October 1, 2009

Aw Ange, I remember when you first wrote this (btw this is Lindsey (Mrs. LC) but from the new site). It speaks to me just as much today as it did then. I need some serious action in my life..hopefully some things I’m working on will pan out soon!

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11 Kate October 1, 2009

Thank you for that post! It is good to know that I am not the only one who has planned behind the scenes at work to do something better for themselves! I have currently applied to go back to school (to get a career) and leave my retail management job, but I also feel a little bad about the fact that no one knows what I am doing. If I get in to the program I will be leaving at the end of December….Your blog has helped me realize that I need to do what is best for me! Thank you!

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12 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

I wish you all the best. No need to feel guilty (but I can relate I did too)- you have to put yourself first at times. Nothing wrong with planning for success and happiness.

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13 Kate October 1, 2009

Thank you!!

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14 Lizzie October 1, 2009

This is not fair – why do we have to wait??? :)

What a great post and a truly relatable and amazing story. Like you I have some seedlings in my brain that are trying to work their way out, but the inner voice of fear is loud and constant. Thank you for the inspiration! Nothing to do with my current situation, but several years ago I was stuck in a job going nowhere and the only reason I left was because my husband gave me the confidence to, even though I was afraid it would leave us in a bad situation – it didn’t, and if anything the emotional benefit out-weighed the (temporary) income shortfall.

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15 Brittany October 1, 2009

This post definitely hit home for me. My situation is very similar as I have a degree and a good job, but I’m not doing what I’m passionate about. My blog is the outlet for me to express my interest in nutrition, health, cooking, and fitness but I’m realizing it’s not enough. I don’t want to do something for the rest of my life that doesn’t make me happy! Now I just need to figure out which route to take to make that happen.

Great post I can’t wait for #5!!

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16 natalie October 1, 2009

This is so awesome! I can seriosuly relate to so much you have said!
ps….your commute was insane, are you kidding me? poor girl!! i’m so glad you are doing what you love and are away from all of the confusion!! you deserve it!

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17 Krista October 1, 2009

Hey, Ange…I found myself in similar shoes 5 years ago. I was working 8-5 + Sunday mornings in a job that didn’t give 2 hoots about family life. My kids were 2 & 4 at this point and my boss gave me grief when I needed to take them to the doctor or dentist. Never mind being allowed some time off to attend school functions. At 4, my daughter was taking a taxi back and forth to school because I had NO OTHER way to get her there. In Nov of 2003, I was sick with a lung infection…..these were the days of SARS….and becuase I was the only one in the office trained to do payroll, I had to work…with a mask on. By Feb of 2005, I was under so much stress that my back and neck seized up and I needed precription muscle relaxants and massage to work the knots out. The therapist told me that my back was in the top 10 worst she’d ever worked on. I made the decision right then that I needed to leave that job ASAP. The fact that I was turning 30 that March gave me an extra push. By a stroke of luck I came accross the posting for the job I have now and didn’t hesitate to fax my resume off even though I thought the chances were slim that I’d get it. 8:30-4:30….flex hours…PAID sick days….it sounded to good to be true! In May I found out I got the job and the rest is history! Every job has it’s ups and downs and this isn’t my dream job by any stretch of the imagination, but I can’t (and won’t) complain. It’s a dream compared to what I came from. Thanks for writing this post, Ange! And sorry about the novel I just wrote! ;)

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18 Lynna October 1, 2009

I started reading your blog just a few months ago so I never saw that post. Thanks for posting it again. Sometimes you look back on a situations and think “How did I ever make it through that?” but I think all the hardship makes us stronger. I hope soon I’ll be able to figure out what I really want to do (I just graduated from college) and have the courage to pursue it in the same way you have. Congrats!

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19 Melanie October 1, 2009

Thank you so much for sharing your story, Ange! I can totally relate. I’m currently working full time doing what I thought I “should” be doing (using my degree), but am going to school part-time to pursue a career that I love and am passionate about. Your story is so encouraging to hear.

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20 Rachel October 1, 2009

The fact that you left your job to pursue your passion is amazing to me.

Do you ever think about how your new life will work when you have a family? I only ask because I feel like that’s something I think about, and then many of my friends practically jump down my throat for even considering putting my family before my career – like it’s such a 50s housewife thing to do.

It seems like your job now could be so nicely intertwined with being a mom one day that I wonder if it was a consideration at all – and if you’d feel guilty like me for considering it :p

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21 caitlin October 1, 2009

i think its sad that your friends would berate you for putting family first! jobs mean so little in the long term compared to family. :(

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22 Rachel October 1, 2009

Thank you for saying that! P.S. I feel like I’ve just had a celebrity encounter now that Caitlin from HTP has commented on my comment :)

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23 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

I totally think it is practical to take into account your desires for a family down the road! Just because you plan for something that you want in your life, does not mean you are giving into some 50’s housewife stereotype. I’m sorry that your friends made you feel that way!
It wasn’t something that affected my decision, but I admit, once we do start a family, it will make things much easier on us rather than being away from the home for 12 hours a day like I was.

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24 Whitney @ Lettuce Love October 1, 2009

What a great post! Isn’t it weird to go back and read something you wrote months ago – so much has changed!

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25 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

Incredibly strange, yes :)

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26 Beth @ DiningAndDishing October 1, 2009

Angela, I love love love this post. I am going through this exact thing now! I actually called my mum in tears the other night and told her I felt like everything is hopeless right now – I hate my job but can’t afford to leave. She made me realize I’m not trapped – if I really can’t find a way to be happy I can always quit and am welcome back home while I sort out what to do next. Thank you so much for this!! Much needed.

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27 Tina October 1, 2009

I feel like I could have written this post myself. Thank you for it.

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28 Kerry October 1, 2009

Glad you returned to this series, it’s one of my favorites. I can relate to so much of what you write. And I really liked the Hamilton Wright Mabie quote at the bottom of the original post.

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29 Mellissa October 1, 2009

I love reading all the comments, there are so many of us in a similar situation! There are days that I dream of walking into my bosses office and saying I Quit!

So this evening I am putting one tiny little toe in the water and going to an info session on a Doctorate in Organizational Development. I am actually nervous about it.

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30 Nikki T October 1, 2009

It’s so true, and really interesting to see, that there are so many women that are in the same boat…not 100% happy or fulfilled by thier job/career, but don’t/can’t leave due to money.
It’s sad really.
If money/income wasn’t a worry, I’d be somewhere else doing something more meaningful. I’m not miserable at my current job and I do get challenged, but my real passion is helping others- but usually helping others isn’t where the money’s at.
I think this is one of the reason I LOVE your blog so much Angela…because I hope one day I can pursue my real calling…
Thanks again for this post!

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31 Nikki T October 1, 2009

And GOOD FOR YOU Mellissa for getting that one toe in the waters of possible change!

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32 Cynthia (It All Changes) October 1, 2009

Wow that is so amazing to see. You are so powerful with words. Thank you for sharing.

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33 Susan October 1, 2009

Dude, did you just crawl into my head?? :P My current job makes me feel SO similar. Except, I get paid beans. I don’t even have the security of a decent paycheck. The worst part is that it’s keeping me from my family and friends, and similar to you at the time, I don’t have the energy to put toward my boyfriend. I’m gonna change it. I just want to make sure I leap into the RIGHT job for me next time, and not just take something different for the sake of leaving my current job.

Winderful series of posts Angela!!!

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34 Recipes for Creativity October 1, 2009

Wow, you know, I don’t remember when I started reading this blog, but I had no idea you weren’t always the happy person who writes every day,and I had no clue you’d been working on this blog and the bakery less than a year! Of course, I probably wasn’t reading your blog because I was absolutely miserable in 2008 myself, since I was working a horrible job that I took for the pay and benefits…but by December I’d quit (during the recession!) to become a life coach and writer. Man do I feel much better this year! Funny we were going through alot of stuff at the same time :)

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35 Caroline October 1, 2009

I’m jealous that you had the means to leave the job you hated. I make barely enough for one person to live off of and my husband is still completing his undergrad degree. I do have plans to go back to school in a few years and find a job I enjoy more but I don’t have a spare cent to save at the moment to make that any easier.

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36 Deb October 1, 2009

Great post Angela. I am anxiously waiting for the next part. You have definitely changed the direction of your life in the past year!

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37 Chloe (Naturally Frugal) October 1, 2009

Love this post and I can’t wait for Part 5!!! This is truly inspiring and helping me to clear the fog from what I see as my future. I know I need to do what makes me happy and healthy, and you are helping to reaffirm that!

Thanks Angela!

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38 AshleyP October 1, 2009

I’m fascinated by this series- I definitely relate a lot! I’ve been through grad school, a rough commute, I’m living in a place I really don’t like at all…ugh. My job is ok, but I don’t want it forever!

I recently started working with a philanthropic organization that really does good things- I wish there was a way to do that full time! Right now, I guess I’m working to fund my philanthropy, haha…

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39 Nikki T October 1, 2009

Another great post (patiently waiting for Part 5…)
It is hard to put yourself first when you have a ‘please everyone’ frame of mind- I’m the same way!
Also, it seems that when you have a ‘caring for others’ background, putting NUMBER ONE first is a tough thing to do…
I’m getting better at it, but still struggle quite often.

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40 Katie October 1, 2009

I can relate almost too well to this post. As a result, so much is swirling around in my head so I’m sorry if what I’m saying doesn’t make any sense.

The timing of this entry is almost eerie for me because for a few days now I’ve been seriously contemplating what I need to do/how I should go about approaching ways to get to my ultimate place of happiness. Like you said… when will enough be enough? I am currently struggling with deciding this…as if I needed more to be unsure about lol.

I am a realist through and through. I recognize that with every decision it’s going to end up one of two ways: something that will benefit me and my life positively or as another setback.

While I absolutely love the fact that I am a realist, I only dislike it when it comes to making the extremely important (and life changing) decisions. I feel almost stuck because I know what the smart thing to do is, but I can’t ignore the gnawing feeling in my stomach telling me to ignore my head and follow my heart. I’m sure you know exactly what I mean.

Wanting to change your life completely is intimidating enough, but actually taking the steps to follow through is just down right terrifying.

After reading about your positive outcome has given me a bit more courage to face my own situation. I mean, there’s a 50/50 chance that I could end up being as happy as you presently are.

Thank you for sharing your story.

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41 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

Well put! I wish you all the best!

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42 Brenna October 1, 2009

Thank you so much for writing this post and sharing your thoughts. I work for my family and have been so frustrated with my job lately. I feel unhappy and completely stuck. Lately I’ve been thinking about going back to school to get my masters. This was just the push I needed to et serious about taking the necessary steps to create a happier more fulfilling life. Thank you!!

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43 CJ (Project55) October 1, 2009

When you gave that link to your first entry I went back and read a couple and just have to ask

http://ohsheglows.com/2008/11/03/looking-forward/

What did happen to your feet/legs in that one picture??

And holy crap, I laughed out loud at the picture of Sketchie in the curtain!!

– CJ

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44 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

bshahahaha!!! Is it bad I knew exactly the post you were talking about!?

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45 Kaolee Hoyle October 1, 2009

Thanks for sharing! I can’t wait to read more. I am feeling your post totally.

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46 mmclaughlin October 1, 2009

I am not satisfied with my “career” right now, and the affect it has on my family life and health/energy/fitness. I also have a degree that I hate, but was too stubborn to “start over” by the time I realized I didn’t enjoy it. So now I have a job in my field, that I don’t like!
I keep contemplating leaving and going back to school to get a master’s degree in the subject that interests me, and my husband totally supports it, but I feel guilty leaving my current job. I can’t really figure out why – except for the fact that my co-workers are great. It’s mainly the management, lack of growth-potential, and the actual function of the job that I dislike. :)
I’m enjoying these posts and hope that I can absorb some of the bravery you had when you changed your path!

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47 C. October 1, 2009

oh my god! i feel like you wrote that from my own thoughts.. your a real inspiration.. i need to make a change, just do it.

thank you!

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48 Meghan@traveleatlove October 1, 2009

I have been through a lot of the same things, including a few jobs that have gotten to the point where I cried every day. I quit both without another opportunity and always landed on my feet. It was hard; people like my mom hate seeing me so stressed and miserable, but I think out of fear people expect you to stay in awful situations just for the $ and health insurance. I felt like it was almost taboo to not have a job, like having a miserable job was better than no job. I wrote a post about this a couple of weeks ago when struggling with work: http://traveleatlove.wordpress.com/2009/09/19/what-defines-you

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49 Michelle October 1, 2009

Wowee. There’s definitely that balance between showing your true feelings online and trying to maintain a certain bit of anonymity. Your business is your business. But now, now that you can look back on it, it’s an amazing gift you’re giving to other women who are in similar positions as you were.

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50 Lizzie October 1, 2009

Angela:

An unrelated response to this topic, but someone just posted this on my FB earlier and thought you might want to see it (even though you probably already have).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYhCn0jf46U

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51 Amy October 1, 2009

Angela,
I was in your same shoes in December. My husband was on the verge of being furloughed for an unknown amount of time (and he still is 10 months later…boo), and I was working full time doing a job I loved, but absolutely couldn’t stand the people around me. I was every bit as frusterated and tired as you were. Then, a call came out of the blue one day in early December. It was a response to an application I had placed back in August…4 months prior! I was a little taken back, as when I originally applied for the position, I was cautious…unsure if I still “had it in the bag” after not having interviewed or looked for a job in the previous 5 years. I was hoping they’d call me, but after a few weeks, I figured it wasn’t meant to be…and then I quickly dismissed what could have been. I didn’t have to think about leaving my current employer and all the insecurities that come with a new job…it was almost easier to just stay unhappy and frazzled, knowing we’d have a steady paycheck when my husband would be losing his.

Well, to make a short story long, I got the job. I’m doing the same type of work, but the company and people I work with are absolutely amazing! I love going to work every single day now…I cannot believe it! When I left the old employer I had over $3000 in tuition reimbursement I had to pay back…and I lost my year-end 15% bonus – all of which would have been nice to have given my husbands job situation at the time. However, I now am absolutely certain I made the right decision…I trusted my gut, knew I couldn’t live (or work) another day in that toxic environment. My old co-workers always told me “IT is like this everywhere” (I’m a network/systems administrator)…and now I know THEY COULDN’T HAVE BEEN MORE WRONG!!!!

So to you, me and all the other readers who’ve taken control of their difficult situation and turned it into something worth-while….CHEERS!

Thank you for all you do, Ange….I’m a hopeless blog-stalker of yours every day, several times a day. I love it! Your post today inspired me to take a step back and realize how far I, myself, have come in the last year… I love my life today! :) -Amy

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52 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 1, 2009

LOVE this story! Thank you for sharing- and congrats!

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53 Jolene October 1, 2009

I cannot believe you started this blog less than a year ago!! I figured it was around much much longer! Wow – I can’t wait to hear more!

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54 Allie October 1, 2009

I love your story! I went through a similiar thing when I was job searching after graduating from college. I finally decided to forget about what others think because what makes me happy is what’s most important. Can’t wait to hear the rest!

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55 Laura (On the Threshold of Greatness) October 1, 2009

Great post! And what perfect timing! I just resigned from my super stable job with the federal government yesterday. I realized that my daily happiness is much more important than government benefits. Sometimes you just have to take a chance and follow your heart. :) I think it’s so cool that you have a bakery now! Amazing what can change in such a short period of time.

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56 Mary October 2, 2009

Wow, beautiful and Prophetic too!! That was really cool to read that OLD post!! I am on the edge of my seat and just got up to get a handful of crackers and settle in to read the start of OSG when…another cliffhanger! It’s a sign of what a good writer you are that you leave me hangin!! I posted yesterday that I am struggling at work too and am posting in a while about my little scheme in following my dreams. This is an inspiration. A year is really so short and just look!! SO much happens. Thanks!!

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57 Deb (SmoothieGirlEatsToo) October 2, 2009

Wow- that’s huge. Look how far you’ve come.

I am a dentist. I practiced for 6 yrs. I didn’t like the stress but felt trapped as I had spent all that time and money and energy on schooling…plus what would my classmates think? I was 90+ pounds overweight and miserable. Finally I chucked it. I decided to do dental hygiene instead. I lost 95 pounds and it was the right choice. My classmates all said to me “wow, I wish I could do that!” and I said “YOU CAN!!”

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58 Shannon October 2, 2009

This is such an inspiring story. You have so much to be proud of…mostly for being true to yourself. I left my job this year as well to go back to school. I want to pursue a passion, not settle on the safest thing. It’s amazing the difference a year makes!

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59 Emmanuelle October 2, 2009

Wow what a great post!
I have been feeling the exact same way for a while now (and I can see from the comments that I am not the only one). To be honest I don’t hate my job, but I don’t love it either and this is definitely NOT what I can see myself doing for the next 30 years (depressing thought actually!).
I am trying to figure out what I really want to do, I have many ideas and I would love to combine everything but I don’t how to, and my brain is on the verge of collapsing from too much thinking!
It’s time I started acting and stop thinking!

Your story is truly inspiring, as well as Caitlin’s and Jenna’s, I hope one day I can also say “I made it!”

Thanks again!

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60 Hangry Pants October 2, 2009

Angela, This post means a lot to me. I’ve been there too. I am not sure if you know that before I became a teacher I was a lawyer. I was completely miserable at a time when I should have bee happy – young, “good job,” apartment in NY, etc. It takes a lot of courage to quit something like you or I did, and even more courage to do what you did (teaching is much more … stable thant opening a bakery). Thank you for sharing. I think it’s so important for others to know they do not have to be miserable. People should love what they do. Everyone has something they can do that will make them happy.

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61 Kasey (Fit For Wellness) October 2, 2009

I can totally relate to this post… about three years ago, I was in an unhappy relationship with a guy I had been with for 8 years and commuting 2 hours a day for a job that I was overworked… This went on for about a year until eventually I had enough… I broke up with my boyfriend, moved out of his condo, found an awesome job, and bought my own condo (all within about a month)… It was the best decision of my life… now I’m engaged to marry the love of my life who makes me happy everyday!

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62 Bree@beeskneeslife October 2, 2009

Thanks for sharing this. Like many others, I have felt the same lately. I was nodding along about the part where you started a blog and what it did for you mentally. I have such a passion for fitness and nutrition, so I started my own blog as sort of a niche to fulfill that passion. My current career has nothing to do with my hobby and I admire so much the courage it took for you and others who have done the same, to take that chance and finally be happy. I am not sure what the future holds for me right now, but in the meantime blogging and being a part of this community is keeping me going.

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63 Mo October 2, 2009

Thank you for sharing all of your stories with us. This series has been so amazing and inspiring. I feel like I am reading the greatest self-help book ever written! You are so inspiring! By the way, I am patiently waiting for the US shipping to start as I cannot wait to order all of your delicious Glo Bars!

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64 Carey November 24, 2009

So, I’ve been a food blog stalker for a couple of months now, but I don’t have the patience to write one of my own, nor do I usually comment…but I just want to say I know EXACTLY how you felt when writing this. I moved across the country for a “dream job” that I knew was all wrong for me about a month into it… I stuck it out for a horrible, miserable year… I cried all the time, had the worst break out of my life (I’m 25) and my family pretty much stopped calling me because I never had anything good to say.

I reached my breaking point this summer… I think I just woke up one day and said “What the hell am I doing to myself? No one should be this unhappy!” I went through all the same feelings….”people have a hard time finding work, and I want to give up a GOOD job?” “what if I can’t find another job?” I liked what I was doing, just not where I was doing it… Anyway, long story short, I quit and moved back across the country. I’m now working as a waitress in LA, living at a relatives house in a tiny bedroom, and I’m soooooooo much happier. Life is still full of uncertainties, but at least I feel like I’m working towards something and not just settling, because “that’s what you’re supposed to do.” Never settle. Thanks for posting/inspiring so many people. Oh, and thanks for the recipes/food porn too, I’m pretty much drooling on my keyboard.:)

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65 Madeleine October 1, 2010

Being a new blogger myself, your story serves as an absolute inspiration! Thank you for being so honest and open about your experiences… I’m so excited to be joining this community of strong, smart, introspective women. Gotta go now- PART 5 awaits! :)

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66 Sarah November 5, 2010

I quit my job yesterday because I knew I could not handle working under a supervisor who treated me so disrespectfully for much longer. It was only a part time job, and she was refusing to let me take Christmas vacation to spend with my family. As I sat there in our meeting, asking questions to try to understand her rationale, she began repeating my words back to me in a mocking voice. Then she asked me, “so what’s it going to be? are you going to go on vacation or keep your job?” I said, “I’m going to put my two weeks notice in” and wrote a resignation letter that I turned in last night. I feel a jumble of emotions; I feel like I’m letting myself down by quitting something because I am a people pleaser and I have never quit anything before, but at the same time I feel empowered because I am saying, “I deserve better” and refusing to work any longer in a toxic environment. I am now re-reading your quitting story and it is making me feel SO much better about my decision…thanks for being so honest about everything that you went through at your job and your quitting process.

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