I am one of the few…
(Actually, not so few, since California is sitting not-so-pretty with 8.9% of the population currently unemployed. And I’m pretty sure that doesn’t include our “furloughed” politicians.)
Ok, I do have a part-time job, and I am honestly so grateful to be employed at all in this economy, especially as someone who has just graduated, and with only a Bachelor’s degree at that. But when it comes to a full time position with a livable wage in a field that I’m at least mildly interested in and doing work that can be considered menially meaningful…not so employed. I’m looking, don’t get me wrong. At this point I’ve lost count of exactly how many resumes I have sent out and follow-up calls I’ve made, but my green enthusiasm and eagerness can’t change the fact that the economy is down.
I’ll find a job, I have no doubt of that, but it’s clearly already taken longer than I had expected, and God only knows how much longer it may be.
In the midst of searching online job boards on another morning that I don’t have to go to work, it is so easy to start second-guessing everything.
What is wrong with me that makes me so un-employable?
Why on earth did I major in
Qualifying for Welfare English?
Why didn’t I major in
Making Money While Wearing Pretty Clothes Business?
How much longer will I have to live with my parents?
Why won’t anyone just give me an interview???
It’s tough being quasi-unemployed, but I’m also forced to acknowledge that there are some definite upsides, especially during this 30-positivity challenge. Upsides that are actually enjoyable so long as I still have hope of being employed full time and for a decent wage in the near future…which I do. At least for now.
- I have time to read. For the first time in four years, I can read something besides a textbook or the Bible without feeling guilty. Next on my list:
- Adam Bede (Eliot)
- The Hobbit (Tolkein)…I’ve refused to watch Peter Jackson’s homonymous film until I’ve read the book.
- Les Miserables (Hugo)…which, upon finishing, will be rewarded with an evening spent in the company of Hugh Jackman (as Jean Valjean), a blazing fire, and hot cocoa. Because I go big like that.
- In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex (Nathaniel Philbrick)
- The China Study (Drs. Colin and Thomas Campbell)…as part of my ongoing quest to learn more about the connection between diet and disease, I will be concurrently reading multiple criticisms of/rebuttals to this book (which is considered the definitive argument for plant-based diets). In other words, it’ll be one big nerdfest, and I couldn’t be happier.
- I can go to bed as early as I’d like and wake up as early as I’d like. Which is roughly 8pm and 5am, respectively.
- I can spend more time with my family and friends– choreographing dances to Disney songs (seriously) with my sisters, grocery shopping with my dad, trying to convince my mother to buy less Spam (again, seriously…#biracialproblems),
and compulsively texting my brother photos of his daughter our puppy …Of course, this happens during the hours when I’m not holed up at my desk sending out resumes like they’re Mardi Gras beads and I’m a drunk frat-boy on Bourbon Street.
- I can go to the gym whenever I want, for as long as I want, without worrying about being home in time to wash the layer of salt crystals/dried sweat off my body before going to work or somewhere civilized like that.
- I can ride my bike everywhere and enjoy “the simpler life” without being tempted to enjoy “the fancier life.” You know why? Because I don’t have a job, and people without jobs can’t afford that ‘ish.
- I can watch New Girl, The Mindy Project, How I Met Your Mother, and reruns of The Bachelorette, The Take-Home Chef, and Cake Boss…and instead of feeling guilty for neglecting my studies in favor of melting my brain, I only feel guilty for wasting my time.
- I can justify the time spent watching television by writing about it. Really, it’s the price I must pay for my art.* (My apologies to all my former English professors for referring to my reality television reviews as “art.” Mama’s gotta be like Laura Ingalls Wilder- minus the prairie dress- and make do with what she’s got right now.)
- I can wear gym clothes and walk around with deep conditioner in my hair all day while singing hymns at the top of my lungs without worrying about violating dress codes and/or irritating my co-workers. And yes, all of this happened today.
- I can go out for drinks with friends without worrying about punching out or waiting for happy hour.
- I can write. After four years focused on writing academic papers, I can finally give words to all the inspirations and ideas that I stumble upon. Even better, I get to share some of that in this blog, which I may or may not look back on as my “humble beginnings” when I someday make a career of writing…which I will, because even a trophy-wife should be able to have her own career if she wants.
That’s why, today, I’m celebrating being unemployed. I know that God will provide and He will open doors in His perfect timing…and He knows that I’ll keep knocking on doors and trying to kick ‘em down if they’re locked. So until my legs give out from kicking or my knees give out from praying, I’ll be celebrating this season of unemployment.
(Please note that I am making this toast with tap water because my budget can’t really handle champagne right now.)