Retail: Part Two

So, after I wrote the first retail post, I thought about the other side of it. 

Any job can be nasty. That is why it is a paying job, and not a hobby. 

But anyways, there are plenty of great things I got out of working retail. 

First and foremost, I learned a lot about myself. I was once the shy kid who wouldn’t raise my hand, even if I knew the answer. 

I was shy at first in the retail world, but then I just starting opening up and being myself. 

I was outgoing, and damn good at my job. And I liked that I was good at something. 

I made lasting friendships with some of the people I worked with. 

I learned about people and how they react, and I learned how to communicate with everyone. 

I got the fulfillment of meeting some of those truly special people who have respect and grace no matter who they come in contact with or what mood they are in. 

I got to participate in the holiday madness. Even though I dreaded it, it gave me a rush. I felt a part of something magical helping people select the perfect gift for someone. 

I learned to stand up for myself too. 

Some days I can’t imagine working a job like that again, and other times I truly miss it. 

I haven’t been good at much throughout my life. I used to be a quitter of everything. 

But, I was good at communicating with people. Being someone they went to for help. A familiar face. A friend. 

That feels like success to me. 

My mom

We certainly have history. A lot of it bad. 

I have learned a lot in the past year since my divorce was finalized. 

A lot about myself, and a lot about life. 

My mom and I have a toxic relationship that erupted after I was married for a bit. 

I don’t necessarily know why I acted the way I did. 

I just know that I didn’t feel like myself in my marriage. In turn it made me act not myself. 

So, to simply explain the troubles, my mom has always been a little “off” as far back as I can really remember. As I got older it became more difficult to deal with her erractic behavior. 

My parents fought daily, and my mom seemed to become more insane. 

Truth is, she was diagnosed with bi-polar disorder, maybe a few years ago, but refuses to accept treatment for it. 

So, regardless, she is still extremely difficult to deal with. 

After all that I have been through, I finally realized how important family is. 


Every fricken day I am reminded. 

So, I decided to write my mom a letter. Heartfelt, apologetic, and real. 

It has been nearly a month since I sent it. 

I have received no response. 

There really isn’t much more I can do. 


I have learned a lot from my mom. All the little things she used to go out of her way and do for us, just to get some smiles, I find myself doing with my girls. 

But, I also vowed to never be the negatives I saw growing up. 

I saw her struggles and how she lived selflessly and unhappy. 

That was not going to be me. I love my dad, but my parents should have been divorced long ago. 

I refuse to live in misery and not live my life. 

I want happiness. I want peace. I want my family. 

I took a nasty road to get there, but I made it. Now, I am just trying to repair the damage I created. 

What will be, will be. I won’t hold my breath. 

Retail

Todd and I were talking about working the retail life. 

I have been a mere associate, and I have been more. 

I am going to speak from the level of management. It is a much more expansive picture to paint. 

So ya, we run registers. Nowadays we don’t have to worry about counting back change. More often than not, the customer is swiping or inserting a card instead. (I will not even get into my disgust for chip readers). 

But, as a retail store manager there is so much more. 

We pretty much run the entire operation of the store. 

We hire and fire. 

We order, receive and unpack. 

We train and teach our employees. 

We scold and reprimand employees when need be. 

We work up all the numbers each day and are held accountable when numbers are not correct and where they are expected. 

We manage all the transactions, cash, charges, returns. 

We order supplies to make sure we can continue to be operational each day. 

We set sales, reorganize, set up, tear down, change, decorate or promote our products on a daily basis. 

We often skip our lunch breaks because getting the new floor set done is more important. 

We have to get talked down to from higher ups that don’t want to hear any of your excuses. 

Dealing with insubordinate employees, lying, or stealing. 

I had an employee one Christmas that took a 15 min break, and came back drolling and slurring and acting crazy. He ended up shooting heroin on his little break. 

And just like the associates below us, we still have to have a smile on our faces for our customers. 

We have to help and serve them and help them with their needs, because they are the people who ultimately keep our paychecks coming. 

For a measly $400 a week, I was expected to do it all. 
I had people blame me for everything, fight and argue. I have had people who I grew to know very well that appreciated what I did. 

People trying to shoplift. Fighting on the weekends. Ignorant teenagers that were obviously not raised well. 

It was one of the most stressful jobs I have ever had. But, I had a purpose. It felt good that somebody believed in me enough to hand me keys to the store and say, here ya go, you got this. 

So, just remember that as the holidays approach. Although I am not in the business anymore, I know what it is like to get paid shit, treated like shit and yet have so much responsibility. 

Just be respectful. Be human. Be real. 

The Big Purge

I have accumulated way too much crap in the past 14 years. I keep packing it up and dragging it on to the next place.

This time, I am tossing shit left and right and loving every minute of it. 

After so much of our stuff was destroyed in the garage, I decided there was so much other “garbage” we don’t need, obviously don’t want, and some things just needed to go so we can part with our past. 


I am moving on. We are moving on. We have learned a lot about ourselves and eachother and I am just exhausted with the fight. Nobody wins, like I said. 

I lived a life where I lived pretty well. I became arrogant and hateful. 

Time to simplify. I feel renewed, so it is time to start new. 

I was living a lie. I thought I knew where I belonged. I was young. I wasn’t wise enough yet. 

I have grown, I have learned, I have stumbled and I have fallen flat on my face. 

But, where I am in life right now, with myself and my life, it is where I belong. 

I have things that are a piece of me, like my yarn and coloring books. 

But, there are plenty of things that I no longer need to hold on to.

I am totally ok with that. 

I am just being me these days, and I couldn’t be happier. 

23 days

I challenged myself 23 days ago to improve my life. It was more than just getting back in shape. 

It was about me facing my problems and doing something about them. 

So far, the gym has been the last thing on my mind. 

My progress begins with facing the biggest fear I have ever had in life. 

It has been a tough transition for us all. We just need to realize that people were hurt, shit was said and we can’t hit undo. We have to be adults and just cut the shit! (Shit is my word of the day today, by the way, seems I have been using it alot!)

So there! 

See, I am a funny girl, but I could never be less than a good mother, and I would always protect my girls. I never break a promise, just ask my oldest. I have only let her down once, and that was because I ended up in the hospital with double lung pneumonia. 

So, on that note, todays triumph was a personal one, and honestly, I think we all won. 

But then, the next improvement is finding another suitable home that isn’t taking us broke. 

So, by the end of this month, we are moving yet again. Hopefully, the last stop for awhile. And again, in this situation, everybody wins! 

That is all I really have for now. One day at a time. 

But, a few last words…

Life sucks. But, don’t let the “life sucks” stuff ruin all the good stuff. Once I tackled my fears, I realized that I am happy. I am content with life in general. There will be shitstorms, some that might get you to your breaking point, but you have done so well so far. All god wants for you is to keep trying. 

Much love! 

-Melanie

Leap of faith…

I lived a time of misery. Not because life was “terrible”, but it was for me. I was living a life I didn’t belong in.

 I am sorry, but it’s true.

 I hated everyone including myself. I felt dead inside. 

So, call me crazy, label me however you wish, but I said on numerous occasions that I would not end up in a lifeless, loveless marriage like my parents did.

 I grew up in a dysfunctional home. I vowed to never put my kids through what I went through. So, I made a choice. It happened faster than I was ready for, but God must have thought I was ready. So, I took a leap of faith. 

There has been some awful times, but the good times far outweigh the bad. 

Just like after any huge event, there is a period of adjustment and transition. We all made it. We are going to make it. 

Because instead of being stubborn, we ask for help, we look for help. Sometimes the problems are bigger than you, and you just can’t do it alone. 

That is responsibility. That is being a good mom. Accepting help doesn’t make you weak, it gives you a push to continue fighting on your own. 

Dear God

Dear Lord in heaven, I am trying very hard to be the best human I can be. I am happier now in life and want to live a good honest life. I rarely ask for help, I am strong and like to handle things on my own, but, I need your help right now. We need a fresh start. I have some offered help from my dad, but it is not going to be enough to finalize it. Please, please open my eyes to the answer. Please help me figure out the way to simplify my life and live happily with my family. Thank you. 

Amen