A few years ago, I left the job I was in because there were some vindictive people working there, who were deliberately trying to make my life difficult for me. They spread lies and nasty rumours about me for months to try and get me into trouble. They failed every time, but it caused me a lot of stress at an already difficult time in my life. So when a better job offer came along, with a much higher rate of pay, I took it.
I didn’t look back. I have happily worked at the leisure centre cafe for over two and a half years. I’ve been working with a very supportive team of people who know what I had to deal with before. I like all the people I work with and my job is easy.
Recently though, a stalker from my past job decided to try and wade back in and call my new boss with yet more silly lies about me. Again, it didn’t work, but it did get me thinking. It made me think that I should open up my options a little. There was the very real possibility that due to a merger, my stalker could well end up working at my currrent workplace.
The company I was working for is huge and there are numerous jobs in all different sectors. So I decided to train in a different department and considered training in a third department. I have to be honest. As much as I love the cafe team, I also really enjoyed learning a new department. It was a refreshing change and probably a good little workout for my brain.
But then something happened. A very well known parent and lifestyle blogger, Kate Sutton, known as Wit Wit Woo, suddenly and tragically passed away in her prime. Her tragedy left a movement in its wake, where bloggers all over the UK were sharing the hashtag #BeMoreWitWitWoo in honour of Kate. Bloggers of all shapes and sizes posted photos in their bikinis, promising not to care what others think and to love themselves more. To be more like Kate. To grab life by the horns and BeMoreWitWitWoo.
It did something to me. I wanted to post a bikini photo but I couldn’t find the courage. This movement however, did do something on a more profound level for me. It changed my life. As I stood behind the counter at work, I thought about how short and full of illness and tragedy our lives are. How we put things off out of fear. How we always doubt our abilities and wonder if we are good enough. How I was stood here behind the counter, serving probably my fiftieth latte of the day and really I wanted to be following my dreams.
I wanted to be a writer full time. Blogging, freelance writing, travel writing, publishing books. I wanted to be at home with my children when they weren’t at school. I wanted to have the freedom and flexibility to choose what work I do and when. I wanted to be my own boss. And most of all, I wanted to afford more opportunities for my children. Blogging has bought our family a wealth of opportunities, from toy reviews to all inclusive holidays. To assure more of those assignments, I needed to be blogging full time, not part time. Giving up external work altogether and putting my heart and soul into making a full time living from writing.
But it was a gamble. Leaving the cafe would mean if I the work didn’t come in, I would have no income. It could be up and down. I could have weeks where I need to chase clients for late payments. But it could also mean I end up with a kickass business, earning more than ever before, with total flexibility.
I know I am very lucky really because I have so many opportunities to fall back on, if it doesn’t work out. Having a vast amount of experience in hospitality and retail management and having a degree in hospitality and events management means I will probably never be short of job offers. So no matter how much I got chased from job to job by someone so desperate to control me that they actively stalk me, I knew they couldn’t bring me down. I was prepared to move jobs as many times as I wanted or needed to, until they realise their efforts are futile.
So I did it. Having spent a week or so contemplating it. Thinking about Kate. Thinking about life. Death. My family. Our futures. I resigned from the cafe. I resigned that very day and gave notice that my shift that day would be my last.
The Be More Wit Wit Woo movement gave me the motivation I needed to take the plunge. I guess I needed prompting, reminding that I am a strong woman. I am a brilliant mum. I am fiercely ambitious. And I will fight to support my children. Because that’s what mum’s do.
…And it might be a bit late but… this one is for you Kate…