Or “How I got fired for not being contrite”
I was recently fired from my job as a Fulfillment Associate from Amazon (manual labor) and I was fired on the premise that I violated safety protocol and upon explaining myself I was viewed as apathetic, while I thought I was being professional.
After roughly 10 minutes of question and answer, if I was aware of what I was doing and so on, when I was handed my final paycheck, I smiled, shook hands, grabbed my stuff and walked out the door. Didn’t even look back once. I sat in my truck, in the parking lot, and… I tried to think about what just happened. ‘Did I say something wrong?’ ‘I thought I was being honest.’ And the strangest thing overcame me… it was…
Nothing. Absolutely nothing.
I was mulling over the preparations of explaining this to my family, I’ve never been fired before, and didn’t really know what to expect. But I did and it felt easier than I thought. My brother-in-law convinced me to go to my Muay Thai class later on that day and I did. when I got back, I ate and heard that my sister wanted to talk to me before more time had passed.
Her tone was a mix of anger and disappointment, I thought she was trying to attack me at some points, but I didn’t retaliate. And again, my tone, my expression, my very presence was blank. During the lecture, it came up that I didn’t actually feel anything about what I did (although in my mind, I knew I didn’t do anything serious), that I should be feeling remorse about the whole situation. For one, my family did depend partly on my income for food and whatnot; it provided a sense of relief for my family members, me having my own income; and ultimately, I believe that it showed that I was growing up and on the path of growing into my own individual.
So at the end, I asked her, “How do I feel remorse?” and she listed reasons that were similar to what I listed above. And it was strange hearing these reasons. They made sense, my having a job was important, if not for myself, for my family. And yet… I wasn’t truly happy. I felt stuck, especially on my path to Medical School, which was always on the back of my mind. I didn’t know what to do, how to close that gap between where I currently am and where I want to go.
But why didn’t I feel anything? This was my very first official job and I got fired in less than a year! Why am I not feeling anything? Am I so disconnected from my own emotions that I can’t feel the impact of something as significant as being fired from a job?
So I started reflecting…
‘I’m not that disconnected, I couldn’t be. If I was, then I wouldn’t have behaved the way I did when my father died.’
The next day, I learned that it wasn’t just I alone who was fired. It was 3 people total, all of us who happened to be within 10 feet of each other…
‘Wait a minute… Three people? In one day? Each of them with their own reasons and one after the other? That’s not right. That couldn’t be right…’
After a while, pieces start coming together, and I get a clearer image of the whole situation. And in hindsight, I trusted people at their word, without question, and without any common sense.
‘Of course, they’d fire me if I gave them a statement saying I did what I did, I didn’t ask for the evidence they supposedly had, I didn’t defend myself in any manner, I just plain agreed to whatever they said… Idiot.’
And now, because I refused to feel anything, remorse or otherwise, I’m now unemployed and kicking myself for letting my guard down and believing them to be honorable people. But something isn’t right…
Something isn’t letting me feel down. If anything, I feel somewhat… Liberated.
How can this be? Why? And then it hits me…
‘Father, I walk the path you set before me, although I do not know where it leads.’ ‘Father please guide me, in your infinite grace, for I feel lost.’
These words, and many, many more, are words that I have said in prayers to God. Maybe I didn’t feel remorse at the time because God didn’t want me to, maybe in the back of my mind, He told me, ‘I have a plan for you.’ Maybe, this was supposed to happen, to place me where I must go.
It was modest hope, but then I was looking at studentdoctor.net and found something rather interesting: my local University has a post-bachelor’s program, a chance to re-take science classes that I didn’t do so well in, to re-take the MCAT and get a higher grade, to right the wrongs I’ve done to myself academically, and to be a stronger applicant for Medical school.
All this time, I felt like I had back-up plans, but I didn’t really put any stock in those plans, until I saw this. This is where I must go, I immediately thanked God for this. I may not know what remorse is, but I definitely know what gratitude is! And I definitely know when an opportunity knocks on my door!
I think I’ve found my path, more importantly, the path that God has placed before me.
… Oh, and for the record: