leaving a job

LeavingpresentsA few treats from my leaving do
(that's me, LEGO version, on the right, courtesy of a very talented colleague)

After six years working with some amazing people, and for an organisation which has the potential to change our future for the better, I decided it was time for me to leave. It was with a broken heart and tears in my eyes that I left my second home for the past six years.

So why did I leave? Hearts can be mended and tears dry up, eventually, but why (and how) did I leave a place where I was happy? 

I spent the whole of last year embracing change. When I chose it as my word for the year, I had no clue it would mean so much to me then; the year ended up being an enormous lesson in accepting and dealing with change. This year, my word is choose. And I chose change.

It is so very hard to leave a happy place; you never know what you're going to find on the other side. Sometimes though, you know you need change; you know you need to shake things up a bit; and you know you want to see what is on the other side of that decision.

Leaving was hard, very hard. Not because I really liked my job (which I did), not because I worked for something I really believed in (which I did, and still do), but because of the people. My team and all the other colleagues and friends who made my life such a joy for the past six years… I leave them all behind, after they've told me how much they'll miss me and how good we had it! Damn you, people! Don't get me wrong, it's AMAZING to be told such things and see it in people's eyes and feel it in their goodbye hugs, but blimey does it make departing a tough business. I cried. I was hoping not to, but like my boss put it "this is who you are". I honestly hope he meant transparent and lovely, and not a crying baby, but I'll never ask and (hopefully) he'll never clarify, so we're good. And with complete freedom to give in to who I am, I cried for the people.

I have been fortunate to be part of an incredible team. One of my closest and dearest friends sat an arm's length away from me for most of these six years. He patiently answered my grammar questions and idiomatic queries without a complaint. He brought out the best in me every single day. Our team was a unit; we would talk and listen and hug when the road got rough, and we had laughter and joy for when the road got easier. We had trust and coffee.

I have also been fortunate to have phenomenal colleagues, who made my life easier and happier. People who helped me, laughed with me, made me grow and learn, made me feel part of something bigger than ourselves, and who ultimately made me a better person. A cliché, yes, but they exist for a reason… because they're true!

Leaving is indeed hard, but doable! Luckily, the tears didn't wash away the memories and I'll always have those. I love memories, good cheerful happy memories of the good old days. Yet, I know life is not only made of memories, life is also made of what makes memories worthy… and it was time I wrote a different chapter in my book.

Thank you to all who made the last six years such a joy ride!
You will be missed.



  1. 20 May 2014 / 17:58

    é preciso muita coragem para tomar um passo destes e sair de um sítio do qual gostamos, com pessoas das quais também gostamos. Boa sorte Joana!

  2. 24 May 2014 / 18:25

    How I love the LEGO, the yellow that you love so much and your words. So happy you and I got to know each other thanks to this fantastic former job, so happy that you’ll be starting another brand new chapter soon. Mucha suerte, my dear Joey! Cherish the beautiful memories and enjoy the outlook on new ones to be made x

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