Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Moving Time and Life Changes

This past weekend, I found myself once more reflecting on moving time and life changes. I had decided to go to Michael's Craft Store to buy a frame for a friend's birthday present. I had a coupon, Michael's had a good sale, and given the odd shaped frame I needed, it made sense to go there. However, I had not been back to Michael's since the day I quit and walked out on the job... Perhaps I should tell the back story here...

When Derek and I first moved to Tuscaloosa, I had a very hard time finding work. Tuscaloosa is very much a small town, with a small economy and no one really had much need for an anthropology major with work experience in insurance. So after a few months of stressful unemployment, I jumped at the chance to work at any job and Michael's popped up. However, it was even worse than being unemployed - despite my education and experience I was making minimum wage, I was working nights so I never got to see my new husband, I was physically harassed by one of the male employees, I was locked in the trash compactor by my BOSS as a joke, I was given the wrong schedule on a weekly basis, I was lied to by my boss repeatedly and the list goes on. I knew that I deserved to be treated better (hell, just about all of the employees there deserved to be treated better!) and also I knew that I was capable of more. It got to the point where I woke myself up crying in the middle of the night because I was so miserable. When I couldn't take it anymore, I did something I have never done before in my life - I quit without notice (right before Thanksgiving too!).

You may be able to see why I've never been back there and pretty much hoped to never go there again!

But things change and Saturday morning found me driving my old work route to Michael's, with the same song that had been playing the day I quit keeping me company on the radio. It was so strange to go through the same motions knowing that my situation had changed so dramatically - that I had changed, in less than a year. Where before I was desperate, lonely, and admittedly feeling lost in the world, this time I was feeling content and unafraid (eh, mostly).

So when I walked into the store and ran into Ms. Paula - one of the few coworkers I could have called a friend there - a smile blossomed from inside of me. I was happy that I had come. She remembered me. She wanted to know what I was doing, was I happy, was life good? And I could positively reply to all of those questions. When she told me to come back again soon to visit, I could promise her that I would and know that it wouldn't be so hard to come back next time.

Time moves on, and life changes.

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