My First Client Trivialized My Worth To Dime
Here’s what happens when you stand your grounds
Unlike first love, my first project was a total disaster. My client was into a trade fair and she hired my services to write her website. She was new and so was I, like teenage love, both of us were mesmerized. I assumed her the wind that’d sail the boat of my high-strung life to the shore. Probably she too assumed me as her butterfly angel. Her goals were clear, a website that draws huge traction.
Of course! I did everything in my human capacity to drag and drop all the SEO key phrases, to the extent that when in deep sleep I babbled, ‘Innovative’, ‘Groundbreaking’, ‘profitability’, ‘upgrade’, ‘Domestic appliances’, where my man again took umbrage on doing ‘domesticity’ even in bed.
What’s more! I was head over heels with my first love. OOPS! My first project. I was kind of floored, or to be more precise, I ‘FELL’ in love.
I became a monomaniac.
Everything I did was secondary including inhaling oxygen rich air, besides my primary motive to blaze the trail with my first web content.
We were like those coo-chi-cooing soul mates, finally meeting their significant-half. While I aimed to take it as my benchmark project, she was obsessed on blowing the home-appliances ecology. It was all so dreamy. I took inputs from her and wrote the content. Duh!
I strongly believe that all content writers need some grounds and inputs to build on, to understand their clientele, and to address the pain points and draw the attention. C’mon we are content writers not ‘Mommies’. In our culture theirs an adage that says ‘Without calling not even mother serves the food’.
Simply put everyone needs to specify their requirements, there’s no magical way to guess one.
Again why should it bother to me? I was already provided with my bread, oh! I mean my inputs.
And suddenly… Screech!
We broke apart.
She was out of loop for some days. My stomach churned on her absence, because my aspirations to soar were fastened to her.
I pinged her! PING!
She said that he recently had a huge family trauma, and she’ll take time to recover.
Of course! I was a tenderfoot, and I had my theories well-read in demonstrating empathy in workplace. So, I bought it!
After a month, I again pinged her, if she was ready to resume!
Nope! She seemed lost. I was anxiety ridden for days, but I was merely a content writer. She had a bigger bait.
Once again, I pinged her. This time I wanted to resolve. Unbeknownst to my heart of what I was to face, I hurled a decent text asking to finish the project. Empathizing with her pain, and promising to stand by her even after the content was done. But I demanded my consideration for the work. Which remained half unpaid for almost entire project, besides some tweaking and fine-tuning.
As newbie, I wanted to sound professional unlike my disposition of being carried away, to the extent that I sometimes, I sell the home to save neighbors verandah. To make the matters worse, I was duped in past cunningly with payment stuff. That circles back to my fears around money and my self-worth. So, I was determined point blank ask for remuneration as we overrode the time limit. I was tired of waiting and wanted to find other clients.
I texted verbatim, “Lemme know if you need my services now? Or please make the other half payment. Also, I’ll there for any services whenever you find the need my friend”. (With familiar-smiling emoji).
Reading the text, she called me immediately, sounding sharp and acidic. Kind of exploded that I WAS OVERPAID. THAT I’VE REPHRASED HER INPUTS. THAT SHE WAS NOT HAPPY IN THE RELATIONSHIP!!!!!
Lastly, that she was not done yet with her legal formalities of the trade fair due to Omicron!
I was taken aback, out of the allegations on my whole-hearted, whole-existent work. Fine! I understand CoVid has created a ripple of chaos, but does that gives you an excuse to undermine someone’s worth. It was CoVid if at all you want to boomerang.
Again, why did my intuition fail to see that see wasn’t happy? Did I miss on the red flags? No. Not at all.
It was a robust client-professional relationship, than from where did this overpaid thing stem from?
To add insult to injury, she even said that it was like someone sprouting out from nowhere and asking WHEN IS SHE DELIVERING THE BABY?
Seriously? I thought I was actually appointed and half paid to deliver the Baby!
I was super-pissed. No, I was world-class pissed at the usage of sensitive metaphor for a professional disclosure. On the other hand, I am very non-nosey(If that is a word!) person, when it comes to force-poking into someone else’s personal business, or for that matter any BUSINESS. Why would it matter to me whether she delivers a baby or plans to withhold for more than human gestation period.
Unless, I am hired as her ob-gyn to deliver the baby, ( Gosh! Too much of metaphorical ambiguity, consider crinkling my nose out of annoyance). As I am very fond of my snub-nose, and loathe poking it someone else’s matters, unless I am precisely half paid for it, and waiting for other half payment which precisely requires poking it in their matters.
Undoubtedly, I was not a neighborhood aunty, who keeps a close tab on the conception period. On the contrary, it was she who hired me to cautiously announce the world that she was conceiving.
Wow! I am impressed at my metaphorical intelligence after being gaslighted.
At the face of the hot conversation, there were some feel good emotions of standing my grounds. Of giving back in her words and language. But the miscarriage of my first project was beyond the understanding of anxiety and confusion.
The long semi-decent conversation cleared few things about professionalism, that don’t let any Emma-Beth-Mary trivialize your efforts, your intentions, and your line of work. Unless, you are seeing a therapist after diagnosed with Dunning-Kruger’s effect. Well I am not.
I asked her upright not to trivialize my work and commitment. She did!
She can’t trivialize my work because she doesn’t requires me anymore! I mean that’s a full blown deceit, because when you are unseasoned you dwell in self regret and buy all the manipulations. And we all know our first breakups cost us life full of trauma and diminished self worth.