I stood on the sun deck on the fifth floor of our rented beach house, gazing out at the ocean. It was a gorgeous, sunny day and I was down the Jersey shore with my family, staying in a beautiful, huge house that even came with an elevator.
But rather than enjoying myself, I felt like I had hit bottom.
I moved my gaze to the ground directly below where I stood. We were above the back of the house, where there was a short blacktop driveway and a few garbage cans.
Mike walked out onto the deck, and I asked him, “What do you think would happen if I jumped right now?”
He looked down.
“I think you’d be okay,” he said. “You’d probably just break your legs. If you aimed for the trash cans they might break your fall.”
Broken legs sounded pretty good to me right then. It would mean I wouldn’t be able to do much — including work — for a few days.
Something had to change.
That night, we walked down to the ocean and went up to our calves in the ice cold waves with just the moon serving as our light, then we strolled barefoot on the boardwalk, got ice cream, and talked about what to do.
Clearly, I had made a mistake in switching jobs within my company a few months earlier, and now I had to get myself out of the mess I’d created. I made it known that I wasn’t happy, that it wasn’t working out, and that I needed to get back to my old group doing what I know and love and do best, which is editing and writing.
But all routes were blocked, and my health was suffering, so my only choice was to leave.
After I decided that, I felt hopeful. The elephant on my chest was getting lighter. I could eat again and breathe again.
At home a few days later, we figured out what I’d say and I typed it out.
Then, the next day, June 6, something miraculous happened.
Seemingly out of the blue, I got an email that said I had the green light to move back to my old group. Just like that.
I didn’t have to quit. I didn’t have to do anything but embrace my good fortune and feel grateful that things had ultimately worked out in my favor.
The change I wanted had been dropped right into my lap.
I’ve been back doing what I want to do for a few weeks now, and life is good. Really good.
Now that my mind is free of the abject stress and anxiety I’d been dealing with for the last few months, I think I’ll be writing here more.
I can finally relate to this song now.