Sometimes I wonder when my life became something that I was so uncertain about. I remember in high school when I made the decision that I would major in Creative Writing. And I never regretted it for a minute – I have always loved taking literature and writing classes, and I am very proud of the education I received. But when did I become the girl working in administration and accounting for a construction company for the simple reason that it’s ‘something’ and it was there? An industry I know nothing about in a field I haven’t taken a class in since high school is suddenly my career, and I find myself sitting at a desk trying to figure out exactly how I got there.
I always plan[ned] everything, and maybe that isn’t such a good thing. I love spontaneity, but mostly in small doses. Surprise romantic date? Sure! Surprise birthday party? Lay it on me (seriously, I want one so bad). Surprise ‘here, take a kitten’? Uh, how could I even say no! But a surprise, you work in accounting now! is not going over too well for me.
Don’t get me wrong – I like my job. I like the people I work with, I like that I’m learning new skills and getting experience in real life (ahh), the pay is good, I’m able to survive and keep doing the things I enjoy in my spare time. HOWEVER, it isn’t what I want to be doing, and that is where I find myself in a pickle and feel like I’m wasting my time.
My family tells me I’m crazy when I say I’m looking for a new job, something more related to my major. That’s usually when I notice a huge difference between my generation and my parent’s generation; mine wants to be doing what we love, while theirs puts more of an emphasis on the amount of money they’re getting. Of course life is hard without a certain income, and I recognize that. I also recognize I am able to make this amount where I can survive and still do what I love. What’s the problem, then?
I planned everything so perfectly. I took every publishing internship Binghamton offered and even had one in high school, and I didn’t need any of them to graduate. I took notes, saved samples, learned as much as I could. I started applying for jobs while I was still finishing up senior year of college. I had my next few years written out and, on paper, they seemed perfect.
Yet here I am writing subcontracts and planning the next time our plumber is going to head over to a certain residence. I try to find a meaning behind everything, and the lesson I take away from this is that you can’t plan life. Pretty obvious, right?
As much as you may want to plan, (and I do, I really really do), shit happens and there’s no predicting it. Employers don’t care that your life plan says you should be employed in their office by this point in your life. I’m learning my lessons the hard way; the ones that high school and college said they were preparing me for but that I didn’t realize the severity of until I left Binghamton with the “I’m definitely going to get hired immediately!” spirit.
This isn’t meant to come off as whiny or complaining – I’m pretty satisfied with my life right now. I’m watching myself grow stronger every day and take steps away from situations where I feel used, disrespected, or stressed instead of waiting for them to change on their own. I’m going to keep looking for ways to change situations that aren’t ideal to me, which in this case means applying for jobs that I want instead of taking the easy, in-front-of-my-face route. I’m leaving passivity and, I think, I’m becoming an adult. It’s weird and it’s crazy, but I think I like it.