Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Sometimes Leaving Is The Hardest Thing To Do

Getting a new job was one of those things that seemed like a good idea at the time. My old job required lots of extra hours. The new job is part time, leaving a whole day for writing. Sounds perfect, doesn’t it? It just a shame it hasn’t quite worked out that way.

Now don’t get me wrong, my new job is great. The people are lovely, the work is interesting and challenging (in a good way, mostly). Even the slightly antiquated building with its unreliable lifts and an office on the 4th floor isn’t so bad. Just think how fit I will be after climbing all those stairs each day. Multiple times a day. Ok, so that part isn’t actually that great…

The problem however, isn’t with my new job, but with the old one. Or more accurately, the problem is leaving it. When you get a new job it’s customary to leave the old one, right? I’d just hand my notice in, work my 3 month notice period, clear my desk and say goodbye. Simple. That was the aim anyway. Turns out the reality was somewhat different.

For the last 5 months I’ve been working two jobs. For someone looking for less hours in the office, this move has definitely not gone to plan.

As I'm simply moving to a new department, albeit in a different building, my new and old bosses negotiated my start and end dates between them. With a 5 month overlap! To be fair, splitting my working week between them seemed like a pragmatic solution. Of course you can’t actually do either job in just part of a week. In the end, the beginning of the week was spent at the old job, the end of the week at the new job, with evenings and weekends consumed by whichever was running the furthest behind. My novel has been on hold, along with the rest of my life, whilst my clever plan to create more spare time, ended up eating up every single moment of it.

My colleagues tell me that I should be flattered that my old department was so reluctant to let me leave, and the fact they haven’t been able to fill my post shows how irreplaceable I am. Of course it could just be that no one else is insane enough to want that job.

But all that changes today.

Finally, I have made it to my last day in my old job. 

When I handed my notice in I felt quite sad to be leaving the department I have worked in for so many years. Five months later, all I feel is relief that the nightmare of juggling two jobs is finally coming to an end. Instead of a sad, tearful farewell this evening, I think it's more likely to be a case of making a bolt for the door.

My old post is still vacant. It’s now being covered by temps until an appointment is made. My old boss has already asked if I could return to train my replacement when they eventually start. My compassionate heart feels obliged to help. My head however is screaming, run! 


  1. Elaina, I'm glad you have managed to escape your old job and are enjoying the new one. Hope you get to make full use of your new free time.

    1. Thanks Ellie, yes I am loving all my new found free time, which basically translates to writing time. Yippee.