The first time I remember quitting something was when I begged my mom to sign me up for softball because my friend was going to play. The first day of practice, a girl and myself were paired together to practice throwing and catching. She threw and it hit me right in the shin. It was so painful, I ran to the dugout. She had been playing softball for a while so she had a decent arm, and she was a pitcher. I didn’t quit then though. I felt left out of the team spirit every time we practiced or played a game. By the time playoffs came up, I begged my mom not to make me go. My team played without me and received participatory trophies. I wasn’t there, but they gave me one anyway.
The next time I quit was high school. Again, I felt like an outsider and by the time I reached my senior year and had only two courses to take for the year, I dropped out. I lied to employers about being a high school graduate until I was 26 years of age. At 26 years old, I tested to get my GED. For the writing part, I had to write a 5 paragraph essay in 25 minutes. The prompt was what friendship means to me. I wrote 5 sentences, not even on the correct side of the page and almost walked out. Instead, I turned it in. I scored higher in writing than my friend who also taken the test and wrote a full 5 paragraphs. For some reason that feels like an accomplishment.
I went to college when I was 19. After I had dropped high school, I completed a correspondence school. It wasn’t until after I graduated college and earned my expensive piece of paper, that the correspondence school was found to be a sham.
In college, I was tempted to quit. The courses went by months — each month was a new course. I had taken 2 leaves of absences pushing me back into classes with new people. I didn’t mesh. I got pregnant and I found out it was early term failure and I wanted to withdraw. My mom forced me to stay. Had she not, I wouldn’t have the expensive piece of paper, just the debt.
I have never been fired from a job. Every time, I have quit. I like to say I was a pharmacy technician for a decade – that’s not the case. I worked as a Tech for less than a year when I was 18. I then worked as a Tech for 2 years before leaving to be a manager of an — unbeknownst to me — failing party store. Then I came back as a Tech for 18 months before I quit during a manic episode.
My longest relationship is 18 months. I go through friends a lot, sometimes repeating them and making amends to try friending again.
I am going to be 33 this year. I don’t have any children, I don’t have a career or even a livable income, I don’t have a partner, I have never been married.
I just know what it’s like to quit.