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Dodged A Bullet… Kind Of…

, , , , | Working | November 25, 2020

I got my first “real” job when I was fifteen. My mom was a transcriber in medical records and her boss needed a gopher. Mom knew I was looking, so she suggested I apply. I got the job and started the summer before my junior year in high school.

Once school started, I came in every day after school — walked about fifteen blocks, uphill from school to the hospital — did the run to all the wards collecting charts, got the filing caught up, and got off the same time as my mom to ride home. I came in on Saturdays for a half-day and did the ward run and did filing and any other work left by my boss.

I worked full-time the following summer as we were transferring very old files to microfiche. I helped the file crew in the mornings and then did my regular work in the afternoon. My family went on vacation that summer and I stayed at home (with friends) and worked.

Over the summer, my mom applied for and was accepted to nursing school. She gave our boss two weeks’ notice to coincide with the beginning of school. My mom was one of the fastest typists and my boss was not happy to lose her. So, the Friday before high school started, I had this conversation with my boss.

Me: “Hey, [Boss], will I be going back to my part-time schedule when school starts next week?”

Boss: “You know, this isn’t really working. I’m not going to need you anymore.”

I went home crying my eyes out. I was sixteen and had just gotten fired from my first job. I got home and told my parents, and they assured me that it wasn’t because of anything I’d done but because Mom had resigned.

I finally calmed down and stayed up late because I didn’t have to get up early for work on Saturday for the first time in a year and a half.

The next morning at about 8:30, my mom came in and woke me up.

Mom: “[My Name], [Boss] is on the phone. She wants to know why you’re not at work.”

Me: *Totally confused* “Because I got fired.”

Mom walked back to the phone and then came back.

Mom: “You must have misunderstood; she says she didn’t fire you.”

After my mom made a few more trips back and forth between me and the phone, I finally told her to tell my boss I quit.

This was the same boss that came upstairs one day, threw open the door where we were working on the old charts, and screamed at everyone in the room, “You will work and you will not enjoy it!”

Anyway, that was the only job I ever got to quit after I got fired.

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