When it’s time to go
You’ve got to let me go away and face the world
Cry some tears, don’t worry
When I hit the city I’ll build you a house right down the street from mine
Have some faith in me and I’ll show you why
That song was a hit when I was younger, and — like other songs from that era — it makes me want to go on a road trip. Many of my favorite songs were first heard on the radio while I drove.
I was restless then, when this song was popular. Life hadn’t turned out as planned. I’d left college, broken up with a fiance, tunneled through a long, suicidal depression. I didn’t know what to do, where to turn. I prayed. I plodded through the days. I was determined to beat whatever grabbed at my heels to keep me down.
I never did beat it. Not completely.
But I learned contentment, gratitude, and (sometimes) peace of mind.
Life gained a measure of purpose when I was hired to work at a non-profit youth facility. Challenged, busy, I thought myself happy. But, as life is wont to do, everything changed. Long after blight struck my career, I persisted. Stubborn, I am, and prone to letting fear dictate my actions.
Yet even that, too, changed. I wearied of fear. I hungered for something more. I learned to loosen my grip. Open my hands.
Life is made of seasons. There are times to stay, and times to go.
So I did.
I left it all — house, job, parents, familiar territory — and went.
Now another season has turned, and I’ve left again. This time, however, I’m not leaving a place but a position.
For a little over two years, I’ve been an associate editor with a small press. I’ve been stressed, challenged, educated. I’ve had to stand my ground, not wavering, knowing what I said was true even if was unpopular. Had to let go of fear and just let things be. Opposition and intimidation revealed more about the antagonists than about me, but dagnabbit, it’s hard sometimes to simply stand.
I’d realized early on that the new boss — the founding editor — was eerily like my former boss. Still, I’m stubborn, remember?
But why keep doing the same thing over and over and over?
Y’know, I’ve spent most of my working life being employed by passive-aggressives who circumvented and undermined me rather than deal with me face-to-face. I hate conflict, but I’d rather address a problem and move past it. Why wallow in it by never looking it in the eye and calling it by name?
So, I did what the other guy wouldn’t, and demanded an accounting. He gave it. It wasn’t pretty, but at least it was honest.
I thanked him, gave an accounting of myself, and politely resigned.
Not sure if he was really surprised, but that side-winding demeanor returned: Hey, he didn’t mean to run me off, but, well, y’know, that was my choice.
He never did address the reasons I was leaving.
So be it.
Hanging out my freelance shingle again.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven
Ecclesiastes 3:1 (KJV)