I have fantasised about you for quite some time now. From the days that I have felt like just another cog in the machine, the days I marvelled at how humanity goes out of the window when it comes to maintaining audit figures and a growth arrow in your bar graphs and charts and days when I have felt that I am wasting my life sitting in a cubicle for most of my waking hours to the days when brackets mysteriously disappeared from my BOMs and wires arrived mysteriously short, I have dreamt of writing you.
Too bad that it is all digital now. I just have to go up on a portal and click on a button that says ‘Exit’. As if the click of a button can replace the Jerry Mcguire inspired monologue that has been waiting on the tip of my tongue. As if the click of a button can do justice to the sleepless nights I spent worrying about student loans, standardised tests, admission essays and updating my Resume after harrowing days at work, just because I could not see myself surviving the charade any longer. As if the click of a button can convey the reason I wore “Corporate Slave” emblazoned across my chest most Monday mornings. As if the click of a button can somehow compensate for the negativity and social aversion that has crept inside this once optimistic (almost in a foolish way) soul. As if the click of a button can somehow make up for the numerous menial tasks and bureaucratic mazes and ‘lost-in-translation’ conversations that made me squirm in my grown up clothes for two long years on a soulless chair in a soulless cubicle. But I clicked the button nonetheless.
There was a paltry “Resignee comments” field as well. A field that I filled up with a cursory three-word comment when I actually wanted to launch into a tirade against everything that is wrong with the world. This was the first momentous decision that I ever executed in my professional life so far. Until this point, I had been sailing with the flow- through school, an entrance, college and campus placements. And now, I had taken the active decision to quit my first job (the type of job that grown-ups have, with a real pay slip and bank account and people calling you ‘Madam’ and the entire shebang). It was not easy. The first job is always important to someone, especially since it gives you the opportunity to carve your identity as an independent person out there in the real world making a difference (oh well! Wishful thinking). But when it starts leeching away every semblance of life force that you have, and your dreams start centring around the part codes that need activation, the backlogs of orders you have to clear and the numerous “Thank you for your support” mails that you have to send shooting across the nation, you know that its time to stop.
Quitting is not easy. You cannot just turn your face away from a steady paycheck that keeps depositing itself every month in your account without knowing where you are headed next. But then there are things to be done and places to be seen. And dear first job, you wanted me to probably merge with my roots into the distorted limbs of the office furniture. And I could not. I would not. I still have no clue of what I am doing with my life and what would I do, any amount of years into the future. But, our ties had to be severed, and so I did.
Probably I still will be shouting “Look, our RMU” every time an outdoor electric installation graces my vision at an unceremonious traffic signal. Probably I will still reminisce about the day back in September 2014 when six college students with hearts full of hopes and dreams had received their offer letters on a very rainy day in Durgapur, of the day they had bid farewell to parents and friends at the Howrah Railway station to travel into the real world and take it by storm and also of the long conversations about disillusionments and pragmatism. And shared disappointments. But now, its time to move on.
Dear Resignation Letter, I could not get the chance to write you. But probably it has been for the best. Words tend to hurt and I cannot be dishonest with my words. And words cannot be taken back (and as all career counsellors say, never burn bridges). So, I could perhaps not have written all that I actually wanted to and it is better to leave things implied and unsaid rather than leaving with a perfunctory three sentence template that you can download off the internet. But rest assured you are bedecked with all my emotions deep in the crevices of my heart and you are the most important thing that I have not written.
Probably, in a few weeks, when the end of my notice period arrives, I shall shoot off another cursory ‘au revoir’ mail with the last “Thanks & regards” that I will be typing for a while. The secrets we share, dear resignation letter, will remain between us.