It’s official! I quit my day job. I worked in the Day Program of an outpatient psychiatric rehab center for five years, and at the end of June, I let my bosses know that I was going to be leaving. It’s only the weekend, so I would be off today anyway, but I can feel the shift already.

My job was awesome. It was very flexible and allowed for a lot of creativity. I worked with some wonderful people and we had a lot of fun events. I decided, though, that I need to try to chase my dreams now. I need to use the 9-5 time that I would be spending at Arundel Lodge, to focus on the way that I want to make a living for the rest of my life.

As proud as I am of myself for getting my degree in psychology, holding a job for so long, and being promoted within the agency, it’s not what I want to do for the rest of my life. So many people have found ways to sustain themselves by doing the things they love, even if it’s in an unconventional way. I want to be like them. Too many people get stuck in a job that was intended to be temporary while they worked on something else. I don’t want to be like them.

I saved up money to support myself in the meantime. I’m living at home, and have the support of my dad if need be. Right now, at 25, I know that this is my chance to explore and try. If I fail, I have a safety net. And if I succeed, I won’t have regrets.”

So, what are you going to do?” That’s the question I keep getting asked. What I want to do is run workshops on guerrilla art, sell things on Etsy/in shows, host community photoshoots/events, get commissioned for installations, finish writing my book, begin my monthly mail subscription, and keep this blog. I know that might not sound legitimate to some of you, and that’s fine. But, I need to try. And that’s what I’m going to do.

(In that sense, I appreciate your support, in whatever way you feel benefits you as well. Whether that be buying an ad space on my blog, a guerrilla art kit from Etsy, or joining my Monthly Marvels subscription.)

My last days at work were really good. I got a lot of farewell cards and presents from the staff, members, and Michelle–who doesn’t even work with me. 🙂

I do not intend on being a stranger at my old job. I fully intend to come back for all the events, as well as random, unexpected visits. I also want to continue updating the wall that I’ve been decorating over the past months. I tried to show a good faith effort of my intentions by making everyone a pipe cleaner sun. Once I started, I realized how creepy they were getting, and then I just kind of embraced it. Creepy Sun Wall!

Don’t they just terrify you? Haha. I also made my favorite coworkers mix CDs entitled “Mary’s Quitting 2013”, as well as three mixes for the office. (I was usually the one who played music from my personal laptop, so I didn’t want them to go without music in the office, since it really helps you get through the day.) I gave them a boombox too. 🙂

Tomorrow will be the first day that I’d usually be at work, but instead I won’t be. I’m kind of giving myself the next two weeks to get into a groove with my new life, even if that means not being as productive as I anticipate myself being over the next year. But, come August 17th, I will be kicking it into high gear, as I begin my participation in the Blogcademy! I can’t wait to go to Texas for the first time, meet my penpal, Suzie (+ her cats, and boyfriend), and Gala Darling!! I’m excited to be in the presence of such inspiration, and I think it’s the perfect event (and timing) for a jump start into my new world.

A world full of glitter, yarn, interacting with strangers, and spending a copious amount of time with my darling cat.

I will leave you with this quote from my friend, Charlotte:

“I told my dad you were quitting your job to pursue art, and he ended up yelling at me.”

It’s okay, Mr. Dale. Everything will be okay.