How I Quit and Then Got "Fired" and Then Didn't Care

Hi guys! I know I’ve been incommunicado this week. No, I didn’t get lost on my way home from retreat. I’ve just been dodging lemons and the bruises they leave. I think I even caught a few and am in the process of making lemonade (I think I have just killed that metaphor, but I’m not going back and changing it now). Anyway, life’s been weird and crazy and good and also awful and surprising and… You know what? Here’s a timeline of what’s been going on in my life for the last week and a half, for your edification.

Monday, 9/26/11:

  • I resign from the oppressive soul-sucking borderline mental health issue that I called my job.
  • The Jerk (my boss) accepts my resignation and the October 14th effective date.
  • This day becomes known, the world over, as All Quitter’s Day.

Tuesday, 9/27/11

  • I go into work, even though I wish that Monday had been my LAST DAY.
  • Coworker decides it’s time to clean out two giant file cabinets, but that it’s my job to trek to the dumpster with the piles of paper while she sits on her chair pulling the paper out of the drawers and dropping it on the floor for me.
  • I make seven trips to the dumpster in my heels, trying not to curse her.
  • I get a call for a job interview for a position I applied for over a month ago and had written off. I schedule the interview for 4:00 pm on Wednesday, because that’s the latest they can do it.
  • Coworker puts up a stink about how SHE has to go meet her cable guy at that time and we can’t leave the office empty.
  • I tell her I’m going anyway and she can figure it out—The Jerk is out of town all week, so she can leave, too, and the office will be fine. The day ends at 4:30, anyway, so CALM DOWN.

Wednesday, 9/28/11:

  • I trudge to work again.
  • Coworker isn’t really speaking to me, but she does send me a passive-aggressive e-mail in list form of all the things she needs me to do before I leave.
  • Most of these things are her job, but she is too lazy or incompetent to do them and thought she’d use me as slave labor.
  • I attempt a few of the tasks, but in a slightly passive-aggressive manner (i.e. when asked for “step-by-step instructions” for one of my duties, I draft it so that a monkey could do the job).
  • I leave early to make it to the next town over for my interview.
  • Coworker smiles and waves and wishes me both a good weekend (I'm leaving for retreat the next day) and good luck on my interview. FORESHADOWING ALERT.
  • I go to the crazy interview.
  • I go to Youth Group, then I stay up until 1:00 am packing and writing a blog post about the interview (which I think I schedule for 8:30 am on Thursday, but I actually schedule it for 8:30 am on Friday because I am SMART!).

Thursday, 9/29/11:

  • I get up and finish packing, then we pile into the car and begin the 4.5 hour trip to the retreat.
  • We stop for lunch and I eat a burrito the size of my head. This is not important to the story, except that it was a REALLY GOOD burrito!
  • I check on the blog post to make sure I'm not a schedule spaz and realize that, yes in fact I am. I publish from my iPhone with on extended coverage, which is FUN! Not.
  • I enjoy the evening session and the worship and the fellowship.
  • I fall asleep to the dulcet tones of three women snoring in a slightly smelly cabin.

Friday, 9/30/11:

  • I wake up at 6:15 in order to get a somewhat warm shower, in which I pretend not to be creeped out every time the nasty shower curtain gets stuck to my leg.
  • I eat whole wheat pancakes for breakfast. They are pretty yummy for being so healthy, but that may have had more to do with the syrup and whipped cream on top of them…
  • I enjoy the morning session and the worship and the fellowship.
  • I go to a workshop on Bible memorization and the facilitator quotes the entire book of Philippians from memory in under fifteen minutes, making the letter from Paul to the church at Philippi more real than I have ever read it.
  • I sit amazed.
  • The Jerk calls my cell phone. It silently vibrates in my hand. I figure he’s butt-dialing me.
  • I determine in my head that I will not be answering this call, but before my face can convey that, Sister grabs my phone and throws in on the floor far away from me and says, “He can call back.”
  • I smile.
  • A while later, Sister hands the phone back to me. There is a call, a voicemail, and a text from The Jerk. Plus a call and a voicemail from my friend who works next door to my office. For a moment, I wonder if the office building burned down (I do not hope, just wonder... GOSH, do you think SO LITTLE of me?)
  • The text says, “Elise, I accept your resignation effective immediately. Please come in on Monday to turn in your keys and gather you things.” I am confused, since I thought we already did this.
  • I call the friend. She has no idea what The Jerk is up to, but she said I was on her heart and she thought she should call me. This makes me smile. But I am still worried.
  • I call The Jerk back. He doesn’t answer. I call him a while later and he says that his text said it all and he cannot tell me why any of this is happening.
  • I get an e-mail from another work friend asking me what I did. Apparently Coworker has been using my vacation to tell everyone in the building that I have “done something terrible,” that I’m “not the person they thought I was,” and that she couldn’t really talk about it, but that I know what I did.
  • I freak out a little SO MUCH, but I try to focus on the retreat.
  • I get an e-mail asking me to interview for a job I applied for in July that I was pretty sure I was unqualified for and never thought I would hear back on, but that I really wanted. I am excited and I feel like I’m on a roller coaster.
  • I hate roller coasters.
  • Later, I dress like a pirate and eat fried chicken.
  • Someone inadvertently tries to light the building on fire with the votives on the banquet tables. Sister-In-Law’s sister stomps out the fire. No one is hurt.
  • We take pictures as pirates.
  • I enjoy the evening session, the worship, and the fellowship.
  • I get a voicemail from the same friend who had called earlier, telling me that she ran into The Jerk and he told her that he had to "fire" me because he “found out some things about me" and something about "I cannot believe she calls herself a Christian and would do that” something similar.This. Feels. AWESOME.
  • I freak out a little more.
  • I go to bed and sleep terribly.

Saturday, 10/1/11:

  • I wake up and shower with my eyes closed so as not to anger the gods of the slimy shower.
  • We pack most of our things.
  • We go to the last of the workshops, then the last session.
  • We finish packing and pile in the car, only to stop ten minutes later for mediocre Chinese food. I am sad it is not better Chinese food. My fortune claims that I am about to find my lost treasure. I eat another cookie that claims I'm about to get my luck back. 
  • I am wary of trusting baked goods.
  • We drive home in a deluge of rain and we can see that it is snowing just slightly up the mountains, so we pray we get home safe. We do, although Sister may have the stress hunchback forever.
  • Sister and I spend the rest of the night watching The Office and I try not to think about how angry and betrayed and confused and annoyed I am.

Sunday, 10/2/11:

  • I get teary at church a few times because I cannot believe that Coworker would say these awful things about me, especially since I have been incredibly kind and compassionate to her (even when I didn't want to be nice, I was).
  • Sister and I go to lunch at Red Robin with my parents, my pastor, his wife, and his son (who is also a pastor) and we have a really strange conversation about the movie Untamed Heart.
  • I spend Sunday trying not to think about my life.

Monday, 10/03/11:

  • I go into work, turn in my keys, gather my personal things, and finish the paper work.
  • No one will tell me what I’m supposed to have done wrong.
  • The Jerk will not answer his phone.
  • I have been banned from the computer, so I cannot even send my goodbye e-mail.
  • Everyone, including other bosses, tells me that they know me and know that these rumors are not the truth. Some advise me to get a lawyer. I feel a little better, but SERIOUSLY? Why does this need to happen at all???
  • I go home and watch many, many hours of The Office while playing board games and doing puzzles with Sister. Because. Why not?
  • The Jerk finally calls me back, denies everything I have heard, dodges every question, and tells me I am “an unhappy person.” He also claims that his reasons for letting me go early are “personal and confidential” and refuses to tell me anything.
  • I am done with this job.
  • Thank the Good Lord.

Tuesday, 10/4/11:

  • I go to my interview for that really cool position and it goes really well, but I have no idea how many other people had really cool interviews, too.
  • If they like me, I go in next week for a second round.
  • I go to lunch with Sister and Mom and then spend most of my day watching TV and eating things I shouldn’t (not like light bulbs and batteries or anything, just, you know, junk food) at Mom’s house while Sister applies for jobs.
  • We clear out our DVR of all the unwatched shows from the last two weeks. Then more of The Office.
  • We stay up till 2:00 am. Because I have no reason to get up at a normal hour any more.

Wednesday, 10/5/11:

  • I woke up at 10:00 am today with absolutely no where to go…
  • Life is good.

UPDATE: We’ve decided to go eat Monte Cristo Sandwiches the size our heads. And if you don’t know what that is, I not only feel sorry for you, but I’m not sure I can allow you to continue reading this blog. Because I’m pretty sure if you won’t eat one, you’re too classy for me and I don’t want to drag you down to my level.


  1. I know of the Monte Cristo, and my reasons for not eating it have nothing to do with class-- I LIKE Spam, so you know... not too classy, but the... the sweet & meat together make me all twitchy. That's just the way my taste buds are organized. If anyone ever orders a Monte Cristo for me, and you're within 10 minutes of me, I'll have them deliver it to you instead, and you can enjoy it for me!

  2. Also-- SO GLAD you are out of that job. I had a similar situation when I left a bad job, and thankfully, those who knew me were kind enough to try to squish the rumors from the ones who I am trying to forgive, but it still sucked & hurt & sometimes I still think about it and get upset and wish I'd done things different, and then I have to wave my hands about to interrupt my brain & remember that it was YEARS ago, it's passed, I'm in a better place, and those people are responsible for their own choices. GAH! Makes me mad though...

  3. Ohmigosh! How did it happen that both you and SG quite your soul-sucking jobs at the same time?? Did you guys plan this behind our backs?

  4. Oh no, I don't know what the Monte Cristo Sandwich is and I'm not sure I can even get one to try it. But I think I have an excuse living in a different country and all.

    Anyway, I'm sorry for your roller coaster but glad that you're out of that place and will surely be much better without it.

  5. Pardon my french, but. . . WATER THE FICUS!?!?! Rumors caused you to be let go? A: I think that is illegal, you cannot be fired for confidential reasons. B: if you are fired, you are entitled to a severance package C: I think I may or may not be facing the same thing with my work, because of Catty Coworker, but I don't go back to work or another few weeks, so hopefully the rumors die off. Ugh. People are so people-y. . . .

  6. I guess I can be okay with that. But the sweet and the meat and the cheese? That's what makes it so amazing. It's like putting sweet and salty together. Or sweet and sour. It's the opposites that make it so yummy! But I'll eat yours for you. I think that's a win-win.

  7. Brain interrupting is one of the best things I learned from TJ. And it's a tactic I employ quite frequently abut this situation, because dwelling does me NO GOOD. I just pray that the Lord goes before and behind me and makes my paths clear. Because He's the one in control anyway. So I can rest and watch TV and not worry about it. :)

  8. It makes me kind of happy that you're angry for me. I don't actually want you to be angry, but I love that you guys are so good to me! :) And where I live, you do not need cause to fire someone, so he can keep his reasons confidential if he wants to. He's lying anyway. And I have long thought that the structural integrity of his brain has been compromised. I pray he gets the help he needs. And leaves me alone...

  9. I've spent the last week calling her a "conniving ladder-snatcher." It makes me smile every time I do. So thanks!

  10. OH. MY. WORD. I should have done this!!! I cannot believe I missed the opportunity. I just went in my normal work clothes after I fought the urge to go in yoga pants or jeans. But as a pirate? That would have been epic!

  11. We didn't necessarily *plan* it. But we did talk about it before either of us did it. It was kind of nice to have a quitting buddy!

  12. If you live in a country where you cannot get a Monte Cristo sandwich, I will forgive your lack of eating them. Except that I am very sad for your country and invite you to mine, where we eat strange/disgusting combinations of food that turn out to be AWESOME.

  13. I know, right? Except I can't be fired if I already quit. All that really happened is that I got to leave early. And that's okay by me. As for the rumors, I'm trying to take a kind of "whatever will be will be" approach because otherwise I get screaming mad. And that's good for exactly no one.

  14. It seems to me that "The Jerk" is so rightly named... & the coworker needs a name of her own... lol im glad to hear you are rid of that stress.

  15. Sarah Pearson8/20/12, 11:05 AM

    Elise, I know you're making light of this but I cannot believe how angry I am for you. You might need a reference from this jerk and frankly he sounds like he has something wrong mentally. I'm not trying to be funny there, I reckon it's possible. Also, if people who know what the rumours are , are suggesting you get a lawyer it might not hurt, just in case. The problem is you've now apparently been fired instead of quitting, which unfortunately might make you look like the bad guy. Although how legal it is to fire someone for 'personal and confidential' reasons and not tell them why, I'm not sure. I hope you've documented absolutely everything you can think of.

    Sorry for jumping on my soapbox, I'm just so sick of people thinking they can do whatever they want to other human beings with absolutely no comeback. A,lso, if I was a violent person, I might want to smack your co-worker. I'm just saying ...

  16. Wow. You know you can file for unemployment, right? DO IT! Also? It would have been awesome if you had gone into work on Monday dressed as a pirate. Holding a chicken leg.

  17. That conniving ladder-snatcher and her passive aggressive boss can go sit on a stick together. Thank goodness you are done with that place.

    Good luck with the interview!