Fired.

You read that correctly.

But weren’t you just hired? 

Yes, yes I was. I was on a three month probation that did not continue.

You’re sharing this on social media? Aren’t you worried about potential employers seeing this?  Well, I did publicly announce that I started work so I’m pretty sure a potential employer would discover it once, you know, I applied for a job.

Aren’t you scared of what people will think of you? A little, but not scared enough not to post this.

Secrecy breeds shame. A fact unearthed to the world by the brilliant Brene Brown. I can sit with this and when people ask how work is going I can offer up a routine response and inwardly feel shame that I am being dishonest; lying to others is often much easier than being honest with ourselves. But I did that for years under different pretenses and I don’t want to live like that again. I am sharing this here as a beckoning to myself to accept the feelings of embarrassment and reject the creepings of shame. 

I tried. I tell my kids all the time there is no shame in trying. I learned my areas of struggle. I learned about the structure of nonprofit organizations. I learned that I need to listen more and ask less while simultaneously needing to ask more and re-imagine less. There is no shame here. 

So for this very moment in time, I am choosing to view this as a pivot from God. Just a gentle twist of the shoulders redirecting me in the right direction. The ‘recalculating’ on the many different ways of life. (See what I did there? Hehe;)

Do I know what that path is? Nope. Do I need to do some serious personal evaluations of what I want to do before finding a new path? Absolutely. Do I need to replace this lost income as soon as possible? Without question.

This journey will be hard with many unknowns and it will call on me to wake up my resilience from a deep, sound slumber. But shame, shame is not welcome on this journey. It’s simply not invited. It’s the ex that ghosted, the friend who only calls when they need something, it’s Jamie Spears. All persona non-grata.

I sound stronger than I feel; smarter than I believe and happier than I am. In the past I would have shown the world a brave face to convince myself I was ok and in doing so, shaming myself into happiness. But as obnoxious as it is, this is my default mode; seeking the positive while embracing the things that suck. Sometimes I get stuck on the seeking part and it takes a long time to see the good. And sometimes the script is flipped and I embrace the things that suck with the kind of sadness that renders you immobile. But my soul is ultimately drawn towards the sun, it is innately programmed to seek out light. The dark clouds that loom over me are ones my inner demons invite, not ones I was born with. And so I must actively push them away, and writing this post is part of that push.

I can feel sad without being in despair.

I can fail without being a failure.

I can be humbled without being humiliated.

I can feel embarrassment without shame. 

The world is my oyster and it’s mine to reimagine. You know, from the limitations of Thornhill with even tighter financial restraints with four children and a dog and a fiance and three bonus children, between school breaks and visitation schedules. But it’s mine nonetheless. Will I dive back into marketing? Will I swim in the market of freelance writing? Or will this pivot take me in a completely unknown direction? I honestly don’t know. 

The brave face I am showing you today is not one of falsified happiness, it is one of verified honesty. And vulnerability. And hope that discussions like these will create dents in the walls of shame we have built around ourselves. 

I look forward to the day when I say to my people, “remember that job I had at that place, what’s its name again?” and marvel at everything that has happened since. The best things in my life have all happened when everything went wrong. 

If you have any employment leads for me, kindly send them my way. I will likely read, label, and ignore them for the next week while the salt on my open wounds dry and I vacillate between bouts of extreme productivity and Non-Dairy Haagen Daasz Netflix binges; because sulking needs a limited window of indulgence, and the effects of lactose intolerance are very real.

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