The Rest Of The Story...
Wow, I still can't believe I've lost my job. I know I wasn't truly happy there, heck, I dreaded going to work most days, but it was a job. That's literally how I got through the days - I just kept telling myself "at least I have a job, at least I have a job". Apparently that mantra isn't enough to keep a job. Ugh. So, since I have been asked I am going to share the details of the firing. I'm sure I would be sharing them anyway but I feel a bit more encouraged given that I was asked for them. :-)
One week ago today I was headed to work, actually in an excellent mood, singing along to the radio and ready to start the day. I don't know what put me in a such a good mood but that was about to change. When I got to work I grabbed my gas station hot chocolate in one hand and my lunch from home in the other and headed inside. Well, I tried to head inside. When I got to the door it was locked. Now, this isn't 100% uncommon, as the door stays locked even when using a key to get in, you just have to manually unlock it if you're the first one there. The unusual thing about that morning was that the owner, Dr. J, her husband J, Dr. M, and the new woman S were all there so it really shouldn't have been locked. I knocked hoping S would hear me so I wouldn't have to get out my keys and I also saw J at the end of the hall talking to Dr. J and thought "oh good, J will come and open the door for me". S ended up hearing me and coming to the door first. She said something along the lines of "that's weird, I don't know how this door keeps getting locked, Dr. J got locked out earlier and I thought I had unlocked it for sure". I didn't think anything about that and just thanked her for opening the door.
I headed to my office, which is basically just inside the employee entrance. Dr. J went in before me but that wasn't uncommon at all given we kept charts and things like that in there. As I stepped inside I knew something wasn't right and there were things moved around but I couldn't place it in that fraction of a second. Her husband followed me in and when she turned around I knew something was up. I said "is everything ok Dr. J?" and her response was "Brandy, I'm sorry but I'm going to have to replace you." You could have knocked me over with a feather. I said something like "excuse me" and she replied "well, it just doesn't seem like you can keep up with this job by yourself and I need someone that can do all of the work without help".
I was so shocked in that moment that I couldn't even say anything. At that point she said "I'm going to need your keys and we went ahead and boxed up your things". Yes, you read that right, she had actually gone through and boxed up my belongings!! There was a flood of emotion going through me but I didn't want to give her the satisfaction of me breaking down there in the office. It was a mix of humiliation, embarrassment, anger for putting up with all she'd put me through, and the remnants of shock that she would treat anyone like this.
I started putting the things that she had missed into the box and finally turned around and asked "Dr. J, are you at least going to offer me a severance?" I asked because every single person she's fired since I've been there that was full time (that would be 4 - which doesn't include the 2 part time people she fired) was given at least one week's pay, including the woman that only worked for 1 week!! Her response - "I'm sorry, I just can't afford it right now, I'm broke." I offered back - "As of Feb 28th I would have been here one year and at that time I would have earned my one week of vacation and 3 personal days, would you at least pay me that?" She stated again that she couldn't but again I said "I earned that time and was here almost the entire year." So then she said "well I'll think about it."
As I was putting away the things she missed (my coffee mug, my The Office calendar, etc.) she stood and watched like I would steal something from her. I have a stamp that read "sent" on one end and "received" on the other that I brought with me. She stopped me while I was putting it in my box and said "what does that say?" When I told her and included "and it's mine, I brought it with me" she backed off with something like "oh, I was just wondering in case we needed to get one." Whatever.
Then she had the nerve to walk me out to my car spouting things about being broke. I basically ignored her and just put my things away. She finally walked back inside while I put my boxes in my car. It wasn't until I got in my car and sat down to call G that I finally broke down. I called him and given that I completely lost my crap at that point he thought someone had died or something until I told him what had happened. Being the amazing, supportive, wonderful man that he is, he told me everything would be fine, we would deal with it, and to go home and play on the internet and watch TV and do absolutely nothing for the rest of the day to regroup. And I did.
I still can't believe that was only a week ago. I can't tell you the amount of amazing support I've received from all of my family, friends IRL**, and of course all of you. Within a few hours of being terminated I had so many supportive emails, offers for treats at Starbucks, and some fabulous offers to slash the owners tires. He he. Of course I said no thank you but it was a tempting thought.
I've already applied for a few positions but nothing has really happened yet. I did talk to my boss at my part-time job and she was very sorry about the news but very excited since we are swamped right now and bumped me up from 12-15 hours to 20-24 hours. That may not last if we don't stay busy but that's not really the expectation and if things keep going this way there is a very real possibility they could offer me full time in maybe 6-8 weeks. That is truly my ideal situation, as I would be working at home and have so much more time to spend with my family, along with getting actual benefits, time off, and more pay. Seriously, can you beat that?
Now I have to thank you for all of your AWESOME comments. Your comments absolutely picked me up when I was feeling like such a failure. To check my email and see that you were thinking of me gave me the boost I needed to pick myself up, dust myself off, and get back out there to find the place I'm meant to be. I know I've said it before but thank you, thank you, and thank you again for being the wonderful people you are and for caring about me the way you do.
** And by the way, thank you G for being the fabulous husband you are. I know you will be reading this and I hope you know that I wouldn't be the person I am, nor would I be able to get through something like this without the love and support you give me. You are my rock and there are no words to express the joy you give me each and every day.
EDITED TO ADD: I almost completely forgot about this but it is an important part of the story. When I got to work last Friday I told you that the door was locked and I didn't think anything about it at the time. It was later when I got to analyze the events of the day over and over again on a continuous loop in my brain that I realized what had happened. I know in my heart of hearts that Dr. J's husband stood at the door and waited for me to get there. When he saw me pull in to the parking lot he locked the door to slow me down so he could go get Dr. J to fire me right away. They wanted to ambush me before I even sat down. I can't imagine what goes through a person's mind to come up with something like that but thinking about each thing that happened that morning I know that's exactly what they did. I knew he was crazy and so was she but they pushed the crazy up a notch with that one.