Warning: What you are about to read is drunken, TGIF-inspired rambling on the meaning of life. Or something like that.
I sit here on my couch, alcoholic beverage on my coffee table, my cats sprawled in various locations (making it very clear that they’ve worked enough for one day), and I’m wondering about where my life is headed.
I had a difficult week. There was tremendous drama amongst my co-workers—some of which lead to unimagined treachery and backstabbing—. I got my ass reamed over something stupid. I was made to do something that I really should not have been doing. And a beloved co-worker retired and is getting ready to move to another state tomorrow.
When I came home tonight, I changed into comfortable clothing, as I always do, and fixed myself a drink. I needed to fuzz my mind a bit because the clarity of everyday life has exhausted me.
One of my main issues is my job. I dislike it intensely, and lest you be tempted to say, “So leave. Get another job,” let me reassure you that I am trying. In fact, job hunting takes a huge chunk of not only my time, but my emotional and mental stores. It’s draining to apply to job after job, week after week, month after month.
It’s also demoralizing to apply to so many jobs and get nowhere. But I try to remind myself that I’m lucky to have a job at all in these hard times.
Then I think about that phrase that’s tossed around so much: hard times. When has it NOT been hard times? Maybe in the 1950s, when the middle class flourished in a post-WWII economic boom. And, possibly, the 1980s. Other than that, really, when has it not been hard times? In every era, if you weren’t one of the rich, then you were in hard times.
Of course, we know that we hit a particularly bad period and, globally, the economy is going down the toilet. But there are still jobs out there.
In 2009, I was laid off, and for the next year and a half, I struggled to find a job and survive. At that time, the availability of jobs on Mediabistro (where I did most of my job hunting) was abysmal. Today, it’s improved immensely. However, it’s still a fact that for every job available, there are probably a hundred people (at least) who want it. So, despite the fact that things are better than they were in 2009, it’s still hard to find a job.
So, here I am, gritting my teeth and trying to be grateful that I have a job I hate, earning a salary that barely pays my bills and that is $10,000 less than what I was earning 7 years ago, and that I belong to a union that hasn’t done shit to change the fact that I haven’t seen a penny raise in almost 4 years.
Well, all right, then. What do I do now? I make myself another drink and focus on my writing because, in the end, that’s my real work. That’s my real work.
And that is what defines me, not what I do 9 to 5, Monday through Friday.
On that note, have a great weekend, everyone.