I have been working at this same job with the same people for almost 10 months now.
Only two people bothered to learn my name, Juaquina.
I come in on my days off, I work overtime almost every single day, I work hard.
When a family member died suddenly, no one bothered to check on me. Once I returned to work after the funeral, they worked me seven days straight.
I smile at everyone, and I make sure to provide a pleasant work experience with everyone who comes into contact with me.
Yesterday, my boss told (not asked) me to cancel two very important doctor’s appointments in order to come into work on my day off. That’s right, the day I was scheduled to be off and therefore decided to care for my own being was the day he told me that I had no choice but to come into work.
I did not argue. I did not respond. I simply made a decision to choose myself over a job that would replace me within a few days if I dropped dead tomorrow. These people don’t even respect me as a human enough to learn my name (which is unique but only three syllables). They want me to be available 24/7, 365 days a year, but is that even humanly possible? It is not.
I write this, because two weeks ago I said a prayer.
God, if you don’t want me to remain here don’t let me get comfortable at this job.
Well, stuff has been hitting the fan ever since, but this was truly a moment to remember. The day my supervisor told me to put my health and well-being second. If he would have asked me to come in, if he would have asked me to reschedule my appointments, I would have said yes. But he TOLD me to put my health second. He was mistaken to think my kindness meant I did not have the capability to advocate for myself.
Today I chose myself over my job. Tomorrow, I might not even have a job.
I believe in self-care. How can I preach that to ya’ll, if I wasn’t making myself a priority? I have to stand up for what I believe. I believe in hard work. However, I believe that before one can work hard, they must make sure their cup is full. They must care for their mental and physical well-being before they can efficiently pour their dedication into anything or anyone.
So, today I chose myself over my job. Today, I heard the response to the prayer mentioned above. Today, I was reaffirmed that I was made to do something different. My answer to God’s answer is…yes. I will be an entrepreneur. I will put self-care as a priority. I will take those frightening steps that will ultimately lead to me leaving the work force, and forging my own path.
Self-love is the best love, only second to God’s love.