Normally, I’m not a quitter, I know it may not seem like that right now, especially not with the title of this post, but it’s true. Normally, I push myself through what ever it is and get shit done regardless of how I feel. But I’ve also come to the point in my life where I’ve simply had enough and I’m slowly learning my worth.
So let’s just start this off by saying, I personally need to stop trying to help everyone and just worry about my gah’damn self! (Even if that’s easier said than done.)
And honestly, that’s exactly why I quit!
But let’s rewind things for a second …
Months ago, I got to cover FFFWeek’s NYC Model Casting (which you can read all about right here) to interview FFFWeek’s founder Gwen Devoe and everything went great! I noticed they seemed to need an extra pair of hands that morning, so I volunteered to stay after doing my interviews and help out. It was great! (If you read those interviews and my recap post, you’d know how great it was. If you haven’t read it yet, go read it damn it. LOL)
A few days later, someone I had met that day (who I had previously already met via the internet) asked if I’d like to volunteer for the events and work with her.
Now this should have been a red flag in my head, and honestly it kind of was, BUT …
The way my brain works, if someone asks me for help, and I can do it, I’ll do it. THIS is the kind of mentality I’ve always had, but unfortunately it’s the same one that leads me into complicated situations, like this one.
So despite the fact that I knew I shouldn’t be working for free, and despite the warnings from my mother (who cringes every time I say I’m doing anything for anyone for free now, due to the fact that she feels like everyone I’ve ever done work for, for free, has used me and hasn’t given me enough for my time), I still took the volunteer position!
Hell, but I was happy to take it!
I had already met the founder of FFFWeek, Gwen Devoe, and the person who I’d be working under directly, and they were both great people! I mean, if that model casting was fun, imagine how much fun it would be helping out for an entire week of events, right?
Wrong! Left! Any and everything but right!
After waking up early to hunt for my masquerade prom dress and mask, I headed over to my first event of my week. (You can read more about that event here.) After that event, my volunteer status kicked in, and I was up early the next morning to head to my first volunteer event. (Wanna know more about that event? Click this.)
Anywho, those events were great! I was on my feet most of the time, in flats nonetheless, but my feet still began to hurt! However, that wasn’t a problem. (Although, I do think that’s when the real problem began.)
After, my first volunteer event, it was time for the all white cruise! (Of course, my clumsy ass got my white dress dirty before I could even get on the train to make it over to the event, but that’s a whole different story, which you can read all about right here, if you really wanna read that horror story. LOL)
Once again, the all white cruise was uh-mazing! I helped out, and then I was left to party and mingle with everyone else. (Which of course was mistake number two on my part. Do you know how tiring it is wuking waist to soca? LOL Trust me, it’s tiring! Especially if you don’t dance everyday and you’re not in shape.)
Which is why this was my fault!
What I should have done was told myself to cut out the foolishness and go sit my behind down somewhere because I had to get up early the next day to work the Expo! But I mean, I was on a damn cruise, wasn’t I supposed to enjoy myself? (Plus, I don’t get out much and I’ve been dying to dance to some soca, you know aside from in my bathroom, at the middle of the night. LOL) So I enjoyed the night, stained white dress and all! And yes, I had fun! Maybe a bit too much fun? LOL Sigh.
I got home at about 1am the next morning, and I was back up at 6am to get ready for my next event. The event that would eventually break my spirit and force me to throw the towel in and quit a very great experience.
I don’t believe I was prepared for the long days and work load as much as I thought I was, so when the morning of the expo came, I was already tired. Tired from the dancing, tired from walking, tired from Lord only knows what else, having fun maybe? LOL Either way, I was TIRED! And then came the real work! Lifting tables, setting things up, going up and down the stairs, as much as I’d love to say this wasn’t that much, it was work! (Work that I personally thought people should have been paid to do. However, that’s a different story for a different day.)
Half way through the day, I was beyond tired. It only took a small bend to realize that not only was my feet hurting me, but so was my back. It hurt to walk up or down the stairs at that point, and that’s when I started to regret the entire thing!
As I watched the other bloggers mingle happily, having the option of being able to leave at any time they pleased, I began to regret everything. Please don’t get me wrong! It was fun! But the pain at that moment was enough to erase all those happy memories! And towards the end of the day, the only question that floated in my head was, “was this pain worth it?” It wasn’t!
But, as I mentioned above, I’m no quitter! So I tried to get through it! Hell, going home right there and then wasn’t even an option in my head, I had started the day and I felt obligated to complete the entire event. Which I did! But unfortunately, that was all that I could bare.
The Legends fashion show was only a few hours after the expo, at the very same location, and I couldn’t even muster up the energy to go to that! Hell, I tried though! That was one of the events I REALLY wanted to go to, plus I wasn’t going to be working that event or even standing. I was going to be sitting for goodness sake and I still couldn’t go!
Don’t think I didn’t try though! I found a seat not too far away from the event location, about 4 or 5 blocks away, and I just sat. I was determined to wait it out. I thought, if I could just sit and rest for a while then maybe my body would be okay, maybe, just maybe, I could muster up enough energy to walk back to attend the event.
Now that I think back, I don’t even understand why I didn’t think to take the freaking bus back!
(Forgive me, I’m a New Yorker, we walk everywhere!)
However, it was at that very moment, as I sat on a bench somewhere in Manhattan, that I realized I had “been through enough”. At that very moment I realized I had to quit! There was absolutely no freaking way I’d be able to get up early the next morning to attend another event, even if I wasn’t going to work, I needed that day to rest.
I mean, I didn’t wanna quit! It’s not like anyone had forced my hands, or did anything to make me want to quit. I just physically couldn’t do it anymore. It was either be in pain and continue or quit. And since I wasn’t being paid for this and I hadn’t signed a legal binding contract, I did what I felt was best. (Although I think I would have still fought that contract if there was one. LOL)
So what did I learn from this? What did I learn from quitting? I learned that sometimes, I bite off more than I can chew. That sometimes things don’t go the way we plan them too, and we’re put into awkward situations where we’re forced to make a choice. This, honestly was the first time I’ve put myself and my health first, and for that I’m very, very proud of myself!
But if YOU are ever in the position where you have to choose between yourself and someone else, I can only hope that you’ll also choose yourself, because sometimes, especially as a mother and a woman, we tend to put everyone else first and forget about us. (Something I promised myself I would work on this year.)
So what do you think? Do you think I made the right decision? Should I have just completed my duties as promised and as originally planned? Or was putting myself and my health first the right thing to do?
Talk to me!