I started this blog nearly five years ago as an outlet for my love of writing and photography. Circumstances happened and life changed as it usually does. I had loads of graphic design skills (ten years worth), a classified job ad and a little luck and I landed a job at a small newspaper as a reporter and page designer. There began a journey that would leave me unraveling my brain one day at a time.
I won’t go in to all the details. Why not? Partly because I live so close to that newspaper. I still work in that county and quite frankly I’m a little scared there isn’t still some sort of backlash waiting for me for my having left the job in the first place.
The photo on the homepage of my blog does not infer that I’m in some sort of legal (or illegal) trouble. My job at the paper never put me in danger at least not the kind that would result in a bullet hole though glass. There were times I was berated, run off the scene of a fire, yelled at and told all I care about was paper sales. I had a creepy semi stalker and a few inmates who knew me, because my name was in the paper. But I rarely felt my life was in danger.
Despite the lack physical danger I was in danger of losing my soul. I had been assigned to things that I would never imagine myself doing. I was put in a position I would have questioned prior to my becoming a community journalist. All in the name of news. When I stood up for myself or questioned the motives behind things, I would be made to feel like I was the one with a problem. Not only did I have to contend with covering certain things outside my comfort zone or even skill level, I was dealing with a narcissistic manager. Again, I can’t divulge too many details, just know when I say I never imagined one person’s behavior and toxicity could cause me to go down a path of self doubt and thinking I was the one who was crazy resulting in mental breakdown.
I wove a web of tangled mess in my head trying to figure it all out. I felt trapped. After months, doctor visits, conversations with family and friends and loving encouragement from my mom and husband I decided to leave. It wasn’t worth it anymore.
I had a hard time landing a position anywhere else. I only wanted part time work because I knew my soul needed some downtime for healing. Unfortunately, the places I knew would be great to work while I pieced myself back together weren’t interested in me, I was way overqualified at this point, to stock shelves in the big box stores or water flowers in the garden center.
Friends came through and I found myself working on their farm. The physical labor is exhilarating. I find myself too busy to think, which in my case is great. I’m home some during the week to spend time with my youngest child and do some of the things I love to do: baking, crafting, photography making music and writing.
Sometimes I feel I’m not cut out for the fast paced 70+ mph highway of a life many seem to be traveling these days. I prefer the old country roads, you know, the ones that make you slow down because the road is gravel and you’ll spin out and slide all over if you don’t. Out in the wilderness, just me, the road, dappled light filtering through an ancient forest.
After two years of dealing with a narcissistic manager, while I piece my life together and figure out what it looks like recovering from newsroom and narcissism I’ll write about it. Writing has always been my best therapy. If you happen to read it and like it that’s great. I’m not here to claim to help anyone, just tell my story and share my journey of flipping my world upside down and changing it from the inside out.