About six years ago I burnt out. Badly.
I was trying to manage my workload. I was trying to tell the boss I was overloaded. His response: ‘Everything is fine’, ‘No-one else thinks that’, ‘It isn’t in the budget’. He told me to delegate. But who to? My second wasn’t interested ‘That’s not my job’, ‘I don’t get paid for that’. I tired to defer as much as possible to times that weren’t as hectic.
One day I get an email from another manager asking me to do a task, it would take a few hours. I emailed back, CC’d my boss, saying I would do it next week when I was fully staffed again. It was something I thought could definitely wait, not something I couldn’t be bothered doing.
The email reply from my boss? ‘Nike – just do it’.
I quit the next day. In an aside, they hired two people to replace me and the wheels still fell off.
Anyway, since I left that job, I have had a stompy two year old. Whenever I want to do things that remind him at all of that situation, he stomps his foot and says ‘NO!’ I want to get another job because we could do with the money. NO! I want to find a course to study. Maybe. So I can get a job. NO!
For the last six years he has ruled my roost. Stopping me from moving on. Stopping me from starting again. He doesn’t want me to do things that may mean I end up back there again. No way.
Today I met his sister. After I decided to take the day off from me, and my husband and I ventured out into the world, I felt happy. And I saw her.
My stompy two year old is boy. He wears a dark grey suit with matching shorts. He has a scowl on his face, arms crossed on his chest and he stomps his right foot when he says ‘No!’
His sister is blond, she wears a blue dress. She dances in a meadow with wild flowers and laughs and sings.
I think I can see hope. I think I can see a way forward. I don’t think he rules my roost anymore. If his sister is like anyone else’s sister, she will make him mind his manners and be polite. I expect it might take a while.
I am looking forward to a future.