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“A sabbatical? For how long?”
“Haven’t figured yet.”
“How could you just leave like that? Amidst all this work…”
“But anyone could fill my place. I handle the easiest of tasks, your words, not mine.”
“Oh, cut the crap. When exactly are you returning? Or have you left forever?”
“Of course, I’ll return. With some updated terms and conditions. Fixed working hours, breaks in between, and zero criticism.”
“Fixed hours and a sabbatical, eh? From what? If you couldn’t serve well, whose fault is that? Plus, wouldn’t I still have to pay your bills?”
I’m taken aback by the blatant harshness.
“Fine, find a replacement. You might have to pay her an actual salary though.” I scoff and hang up.
He doesn’t call back. Who cares.
Twenty-five years of relentless service, 24/7, mounting stress, and incessant fault-finding from my seniors, peers, and these days, even juniors. For my so-called family, I’m just a housewife. An unpaid slave.
I walk down the cobblestone path. My parents’ abode, my childhood home. I breathe in the memories. I’ve often been denied the simple joy of homecoming, for a thankless job I no longer wish to keep. I’m done. I’ll walk, on my own.

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