Sunday, 28 March 2010

Get it off my chest

Well that didn't last long on the non blogging front... but I feel that if I don't get this post off my chest it is going to well up within me and choke me to death.

So I left work...

My last day was completely surreal. I thought I'd done my mourning and felt surprisingly excited - like it was a birthday that you actually want to celebrate - filled with cake and cards and people forced to be nice to you. I arrived at my beautifully decorated desk (bless you Caroline) - covered in glitter and a banner and the obligatory helium balloon. Immediately I welled up and at that point I knew I wasn't gonna get through the day with dry eyes. But the day wasn't all frolics - oh no, there were scripts at second draft to turn round - so there sadly was pesky work to do before the fun stuff could begin.

Post lunch I felt that sinking feeling - of having tonnes of scripts to read - then I remembered 'you don't, you're leaving.' I promptly tossed them all into the confidential bin and felt like a naughty teenager avoiding her homework. I'd already cleared my desk, unpinned Sproglet drawings and photos, packed away the scripts that I'd slaved over and ultimately loved. 2 years fitted into one small bag.

I've never left a job before with such mixed emotions - but there again, I've never left a job in such weird circumstances. My bosses like me, are happy with my work, I am a committed team member, get on with all the writers, am passionate about the show - and yet, I have to leave. I'm not disappearing under a cloud having been fired, I'm not jumping ship racing towards a great promotion elsewhere - I simply have to go due to some ridiculous bureaucracy that makes no sense. I don't know how to process my reaction to such an ousting.

When we gathered for an amazing coffee cake (I'd persuaded two great bakers in the office to have a 'bake off' - cunning, I know) our head script ed Pete nervously made an emotional speech and the tears that had threatened to spill all day came pouring down. I felt so fucking cheated at leaving my team - my friends - that I simply couldn't find the words to tell them how much they have meant to me over the past two years. They are an amazing, supportive, warm, funny, slightly loopy bunch of people - who I miss already.

They gave me great gifts - a necklace that says 'may all your wildest dreams come true' and a framed signed script cover of my best and most watched episode. I tried to get out a speech - and muttered something about 'why am I crying, I'm not even pre-menstrual?' infront of my new boss - now ex-boss - barely managing to cough out a few emotional words.

All that was left to do was of course... karaoke. We hit a dodgy chinese restaurant in London's Soho - with our own private room, lined with chairs and the all important karaoke machine. Story ed Alex took charge and we were off! I began by murdering 'son of a preacher man' took a detour in duet land with Kylie and Jason's 'hit' 'Especially for you' (with one of my favourite writers who clearly had done it before) and ended up predictably sobbing with all my team as we wailed out 'Goodbye' by the Spice girls. The night was a triumph. One that could remain in our rose tinted memory as a long rollercoster of beautiful song, if it were not for the fact that Caroline videoed/photographed the whole thing. Dear god, they won't be pretty.

Husband came along - if only to pour me into a cab at the end of the night - which he duly did, as I drunkenly wept on his shoulder. The next day he told me he had never known me to work with such a nice bunch of people - he normally hates those kind of events, but said he'd had a great time.

The fog of a spectacular hangover and the fact I had to teach a class how to be presenters the following morning - kept my emotions in check yesterday. But today everything has come tumbling out and the only way I can describe how I feel is bereft. They'll all troop into work tomorrow and hold a tea filled post mortem on Friday night - and I won't be there. My work family will continue to champion and chastise each other without me. It feels like there is a party going on that I once was invited to and now my name isn't on the sodding list.

My funds are dwindling, TV drama feels like it is imploding (with ITV's 'The Bill axed on Fri after 27 years), I have no idea how I will ever get a job in this fecking industry ever again. No matter how much we hate it - our jobs help define us; give us a reason to get up, inspire and challenge us and give us a golden glow when things for once go right. And I no longer have one.

No cake, no warming cups of tea or even cuddles with Sproglet is abating this pit of sadness in my tummy. I am sure it will pass. But to all down Walford way - my life won't be the same without you.


jkelsofarrell said...

I understand the fear of leaving a job and all the second guessing that goes along with it. Plus the feeling that maybe you've been seeing it all in such a negative light that you never really saw it for what it was. I wish you luck. Things do have a way of working out, although not immediately nor in the way you might hope/expect.

Keenie Beanie said...

I feel for your sadness, CM, and I'm glad that you had a great send off. I think that this will be the first step to a big change for you. No one has a crystal ball, so it's hard to see what's coming. Best of luck!

brittany mum said...

good luck for what comes next..the book'll be brill, and the funds have their own way of sorting themselves out! hope you keep the blog going coz i havent missed a post (even if i havent commented much)! take care CM!

Anonymous said...

Good luck from me too, I'm happy you didn't totally give up the blog...
Things will get better, and now it's time to finish your book! :)
Serena from Italy