I have done the deed: I have quit my job. I turned in my two weeks notice this morning. My stomach was doing great gymnastic feats before I told my boss, expecting something horrible to happen. Nothing besides questions, really. Quitting my job feels decadent during a recession, but it is time to go. I was hired at my family business, and I am really excited about that. It's a new field, but it's one that plays to my strengths and one that I am interested in pursuing long-term.
It has been a good experience overall. A few of my stories got picked up by policy wonks and traditional media, and today I broke a story. I am especially sorry to leave my office mate; we have become very good friends these past five months, and I will miss seeing her everyday in the Batcave. I am also sorry to miss the next state legislative session, because I was really looking forward to reporting on that and getting to know the reps, senators and their aides.
This announcement may be a surprise to some of you, especially considering I love writing. I'm not going to stop; I honestly do not think I would know how to stop writing. I'm getting published more too, which is encouraging. I'll miss the rush of daily articles and the excitement of journalism, but I'm not going to miss this job.
Winnie the Pooh said, "You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." I thought of that quote last week when my landlord stopped by to show my apartment and he asked where I was moving.
"Home," I said. "I like this apartment and I like my actual job as a reporter, but there are other factors involved."
"Good for you," he said in his thick Irish accent. "Too many people say, stick it out, it will only get better. I say, bullshit. Get out and do something else. Too many people don't get out. Too many people don't live. I admire your willingness to leave."
I have to admit, I was a little surprised by him saying that. Maybe because that was the first time I had met him (his wife showed the apartment to me originally), but it probed me into thinking more about life and the choices that go with it. I liked his directness. We still live in a free country and if we're unhappy with our lives, it's up to ourselves to make it better, be it by improving relationships with others, changing careers, or looking at the sky instead of the ground.
The poem of the week is therefore "Bravado" by Robert Frost:
Have I not walked without an upward look
Of caution under stars that very well
Might not have missed me when they shot and fell?
It was a risk I had to take--and took.
And a second poem, for good measure:
"Invictus" by William Ernest Henley
Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
Let the new adventure begin!