You Do It Because You Have To

I haven’t posted anything in a few days because everything I write, I edit, and I’m not sure how I feel about what’s going on in my life right now. Mainly, I met a man. And Man = Distraction. More later, possibly.

One thing I am sure of is that applying to jobs is a nerve-wracking process and I want to give up and live on a remote island sometimes. At these times working in a grocery store isn’t a bad idea, and living in a treehouse in Oregon is appealing. These daydreams always involve moving to some remote location, when the reality is I work in a grocery store now, in the bedroom of my friend’s house. It’s the kind of lifestyle I could’ve romanticized about when I was married. Seriously.

Yesterday I talked with a friend who’s changed careers twice already, and she said that trying to get into the academic field is still one of the toughest fields to get into, you have to work your way up, etc., and she suggested that I try teaching professional writing to business people, or substitute teaching high school students. My translation: “You’ll never make it as a college professor, so you should do something you hate because that’s all you’ll ever get.” And I agreed with her suggestion, as if I might be interested in teaching high school, which is the second worst time in a person’s life next to middle school, and as if I’d consider teaching professional writing, a type of writing that makes me want to stab myself in the eye with a pencil.

I didn’t tell her any of this, because she was just trying to be helpful. Instead, I said that I would think about it, and I went home and panicked. My entire day should have been spent in front of the computer applying to jobs, writing or revising publishable works of nonfiction, and then submitting these works for publication. My solution to this panic was to get an expensive manicure, pedicure, and brow wax first, because I’ll probably be seeing my new Man soon, and obviously I have my priorities.

Someone somewhere has to hire me. They’ve hired me before, so why not now? Adjunct faculty at a community college is fine. After my mani pedi I submitted my resume to a local community college, just in case staying in this area becomes more important later, what with the new Man and all. Other people get hired so why not me? These are my new mantras. They have to be.

It’s hard starting over. My friend, the aforementioned career-changer, told me that as long as I’m okay starting over with nothing, I can change careers, and that she just tries not to dwell on the fact that she could be living in a nicer house or closer to retirement now, because she knows she’d have committed suicide had she not changed careers.

And I know that I too have no other choice.


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