H is for Healing
I never thought quitting my full-time job in 2019 would lead me to inner healing. I’ve always had a toxic relationship with work; thinking that the more I worked, the closer I would get to the "American Dream." Towards the end, I was working 9-10 hour shifts, 7 days a week, going to school full-time, all while dealing with PPD and trying to raise a 9 month old. Until one day my body could no longer take it and I went into a full panic attack that ended me in the hospital.
Without a plan or any substantial savings, I left a job where I had devoted almost a decade of my life because I thought that my job cared about me like I cared about it. But when I left, no one cared and I felt like I was left with nothing. Leaving my job left me with more time than I could handle; time to rethink my friendships, my identity, my goals, and my relationship with work. Once the pandemic hit, everything was heightened.
Latina Hustle helped me with the beginning of my healing journey. It gave me the space to think about my values, goals, and priorities. It gave me the clarity to think how messed up my relationship with work had become because I always worked to please someone else or because I felt I owed it to my parents. At the end, I began to realize that I did not even like the career path I had chosen but had rather pursued it because it was what I was supposed to be pursuing. I worked since I was 16 years old and never had the privilege to explore hobbies or even think about what I wanted to be when I grew up.
During the pandemic, I realized I loved creating and anything that had to do with my hands. As much as I had labeled myself an introvert (later unpacking that it was more of a trauma response since I've had to guard myself from people to survive) I can be an extrovert who is energized by talking to others. I found the extrovert in me from the pop-ups I did for Latina Hustle.
I wish I could say that I am completely healed from my toxic relationship with the hustle, but the truth is that I am still working on it. Sometimes my sister even jokes that the hustle reclaimed me because I have so many things going on. But at least I can say that those hustles are hustles that I love doing and I’ve chosen for myself.