January 7, 2007

Personal Rant: Work Life

Wow, it's been over a month since I've posted. November and December were extremely busy, making and trying to sell jewelry, attending Holiday events, and getting ready for both Christmas and our wedding anniversary. Christmas was wonderfully quiet and peaceful, but afterwards I caught a nasty bug and have been out of commission since then. Now, it's back to life, with Spanish class starting on Monday and my husband starting grad school (in addition to his full-time job). Things are getting back to "normal." (Normal - ha!).

I was prompted to post today after having a hot button pushed one too many times. While listening to an otherwise inspiring program about women who run highly successful businesses, I heard one entrepreneur say, "To be successful, you have to do something you love."

Oh! That's so easy to say, if you're one of the charmed few who is able to do something you love. But what if:
  • you don't have the credentials to get into a profession you'd love and don't have the money to get the education/training/certifications to get the credentials?
  • there are few (or no) paying opportunities to do what you love?
  • you are ill or disabled in some way the inhibits your ability to do what you love?
  • or . . .
I did something I loved once--for four years--and the profession chewed me up and spit me out. I loved my work and was extremely good at it, but the profession draws a lot of hard, dysfunctional people--mostly male--who crave power. It broke my heart and broke my spirit. So . . . that was that. I moved on. (If you're wondering, I worked as a juvenile probation officer.)

I moved on to smaller and lesser things--a meaningless hourly job that barely paid the rent for a tiny apartment; but it left me with some sanity at the end of the day. I worked hard at my job and went back to college to begin working my way into another profession. Twenty years later, I had a position with a title and a good salary, but one that I hated to face every single day. Nevertheless, as one of my friends said, "A girl's gotta eat--and get a new pair of shoes now and then."

I can't do that anymore. No more grueling days in jobs I hate. No more working for nasty bastards. After thirty-eight years of working (forty, if you count babysitting), I'm still trying to find the thing I love to do that I'm capable of doing (now that I'm officially disabled) and that pays actual money. I'm searching and researching, but God knows what it might be. At least I hope She does.

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