Tess’ story was nearly unbearable for me to listen to, as it is nearly verbatim my current situation. I recently left my dream job after eight years with no net to jump into, and am in the violent throws of trying to find how to feel remarkable in my own life without a celebrated, successful, applauded career to define me. As she says, “It is terrifying, it is awful, and it is heartbreaking.” Everyone else thinks you’re so brave and are sure everything it going to work out so well, and all you can feel is panic and despair. But in the end, it has to be a moment you take advantage of to appreciate who you are without the title, without the acclaim, and (oh god) without the money.
I have no idea what’s coming next, and it’s the most uncomfortable I’ve ever been in my life. And I feel her pain when she says “If one more person tells me to ‘just make it happen’, they’re getting a punch in the face.” But knowing just one other person out there feels the way I do is comforting and inspiring, and I think it’s time to find out for myself what makes me remarkable.