There I was, just waking up from a rather long Sunday afternoon nap and thinking to myself, “Ugh. I feel awful,” when it occurred to me that I ought to feel fabulous and relaxed and grateful for the opportunity to take a long Sunday afternoon nap.

Today will be the first day I’ve been totally obligation free in a long time. My house is clean. My husband spends ten hours a day at the school studying. My cats have been bathed and re-acclimated to human presence in the house. All vestiges of responsibility with my former sales job has passed. I live in a town where nothing happens if you’re over 23 and where my friend prospects all have full-time jobs. I have no inclination to become an obsessive exerciser nor any ambitions to become “homemaker of the year.”

As such, my long Sunday afternoon nap was more of an escape from sheer boredom than a luxurious indulgence during a coveted and special day off. And this, friends, was my first real day off. Even while performing my duties for my former job, I was never very good at distinguishing between work-time and home-time as I was working from my home. Being home all day without any structure at all is sure to be a struggle for me.

So while I was lying in bed, questioning my lack of appreciation for my nap, I came to the realization that I really do need some occupation for my time. Naturally, my thoughts turned to babies. Not only is this a natural place for my thoughts to turn in general, but I also happened to watch two Lifetime movies about teenage mothers this weekend. Besides the fact that I would now be dead had I gotten pregnant in high school (what’s the opposite of matricide? maybe infanticide, only when the infant is actually a pregnant teenager and her mom is so pissed she kills her?), I was really quite jealous of these teenage mothers. They don’t have to worry about the new study that says you only have 12 eggs left by the time you’re thirty. Sure, they have far more to worry about than that, but at least they have a baby.

Anyway, being that I am not a teenager and am therefore incapable of making ill-thought-out decisions regarding procreation, my second thought was that I needed a job. Well, that’s obvious. Money generally only comes to those who work (or else already have a ton of money to begin with), and I am sadly in need of money.

The problem with this solution is, of course, that it takes time to find a job, especially in a tiny college town where all the decent jobs are taken by stupid students…Oh sorry, that was a bit of a rant, but I’m getting bitter about the job market here.

SO, in the meantime, I suppose I’ll be doing more writing. When I was last unemployed, I managed to write a novel. Wonder if I can do it again? It’s either that or begin thinking more like a teenager 🙂

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Y’all, I’m in cover letter hell. I am vastly over-capable of performing most any job listed on Monster.com (aside, of course, from anything technical or programming related – though if I had to, I could learn how to do it, I’m sure), but what’s holding me up from getting any offers is that I have not actually submitted any applications as yet.

Here’s why: I hate (HATE) cover letters. I may be uniquely qualified for a position, but when I try to describe these qualifications in succinct paragraph form, I feel like the only thing I’m emphasizing is that I’ve held about a million jobs and hated them all (with one notable exception – life guarding and swim team coaching). And I think the reader of my cover letter will clearly see that I have no idea what I want to do and am likely to quit working for them in approximately 18 months. It isn’t necessarily true – this could be the exact job for me… but it probably isn’t.

Here’s what I need to happen: unexpected pregnancy accompanied by the publication of my novel and concurrent lottery winning. It doesn’t help that I’m currently taking precautions against pregnancy, my novel isn’t out with any agents at the moment, and I’ve not purchased any lottery tickets.

Which highlights my point, actually. I need all these things to happen, but I’m actively working against or simply not taking the necessary steps to ensure that there’s even a chance of these wonderful things occurring. I need a new job, but I’ve not applied for a new job. I need to lose weight but I’m not doing much about it. I need to work harder but I just took a five day vacation… I am actively sabotaging myself.

Do I like being stressed and depressed? Well, no. Of course not. So why the heck am I doing this to myself?

Here’s what I think: I’m currently so overwhelmed that I believe it will take an act of God to remedy all of my problems and I am clearly not God. So why should I have to act at all? One step at a time doesn’t really factor into my thinking. Fixing one thing just for something else to fall apart seems pointless – I am comfortable with the current crappy aspects of my life. I’d rather not venture into that realm of unknown crappiness. So, I’ll just wallow here for a while until God decides to act. And, for the record, I’m not being flippant or sacrilegious. I honestly believe God has a plan for my life and he’s gonna make it happen. And I’m just lazy enough to really enjoy the idea of God being able to work in spite of me. It’s gonna be in spite of me either way, no matter how hard I’m working, so I might as well just let it happen.

Here’s my final thought (is this getting annoying yet?): I’m not exactly to the “feral child” state yet where I’ll pitch my tent in Mom and Dad’s back yard and eat squirrels and bathe in creeks, but every day, I find the idea more and more appealing, for the following reasons:

  1. I don’t need a job, as long as I can bum off of my parents’ internet.
  2. It’s been done for millenia, long before the advent of health insurance.
  3. I don’t have to exercise because I plan to eat squirrels caught by my front claw-less cats. I’m clearly going to get skinny without much effort.
  4. I will become immune to mosquito bites. I’m sure it works that way.

I’m dealing with something a little unexpected today. It occurred to me this morning that my usefulness as a big sister has just been outlived. My little, formerly hopelessly lost (like her big sis), sister has just moved to Baton Rouge and is beginning graduate school at the end of next month. She no longer fits into the hopelessly lost category and I’m not sure I have any experience being as together as she now seems to be. How can I offer any advice? How can anything I suggest be meaningful?

Sista has graduated from college and has a job and a home and a car (albeit a bit of a clunker), and most importantly, a plan. It’s got to be a lovely feeling, being able to plan out the next five years of your life and be reasonably convinced that what you’ve planned will come to fruition. I’ve only had the illusion of five year planning up to this point in my adult life – with definite plans to change that situation – so how am I supposed to be the big sister when I’m fairly certain she’s got things more under control than I have?

Well, at least I’ve still got the trump card: I can still help and guide and make snarky comments regarding her love life. I’m nowhere near perfect in this regard either, but it does make me feel a little better about being a big sister still. I guess one day I’ll have to give up the title completely because I’m sure she’ll be wildly successful in all her endeavors… and I’m likely to stumble along for ever, with any successes falling into my lap completely by mistake.

But for now, I guess I can say I haven’t totally outlived my usefulness as a big sister…only partially. Here’s to you and your endless success, Sista!!

And I’m not talking about the kind of driving one does on the road. 

I’m talking about what it means to be driven. Career wise. I really wish I had a real drive to succeed in my job… I think it would make things a lot easier. Like there wouldn’t be a question as to whether or not I’ll make the calls I need to make today or tomorrow…or ever. They’d probably already be made. And I’d somehow naturally have ten appointments a week and make gajillions of dollars every month. I once talked about “faking it” but I don’t believe it’s possible to give more than a certain level of effort if one doesn’t truly love the work. And I can think of only two things I’ve never actually done before but I believe will bring me joy: parenting and editing. And I can think of only two jobs I’ve actually had (well… perhaps the second isn’t exactly a job, since I haven’t made a cent on it) that brought me joy: coaching a swim team and writing a novel. Three of the four of those potential occupations make little to no money – certainly not enough to live on comfortably. One of them requires I live in a geographic region I can’t afford to live in at this point in my life, and even if I could afford it, I’m a little bound by the restrictions of where Hubby is currently in school.

SO I guess this explains my lack of drive. I’m not driven to do this work because I’ve got at least four things I’d rather be doing. And it feels like I can’t do those things yet. Why become an unbelievably successful book sales rep when it isn’t what I really want to end up doing?

Maybe I’m just whining but I can’t possibly be the only person out there who basically knows what they want to be when they grow up but are now grown ups doing something totally different because of circumstances. Right? Surely someone can commiserate with that! Can I get an ‘AMEN!’???

I recently learned a new abbreviation for which I am overly fond. FML. I’m going to leave the “F” part to your imagination. The “M” stands for my. The “L” stands for life. F my life.

I’m totally feelin’ it right now. It seems like whenever I let myself get excited about something, it crumbles right before my eyes. I interviewed for a clerical position last week. Picture my excitement about this job in this way: The job is one I never would have imagined myself wanting – we’ll call it a pimento. I don’t mind pimentos. I can handle pimento or two on it’s own. A little slimy, nothing I’d eat alone unless I was down to my last dollar and that’s all that was left in the pantry. Okay, so I’m getting close to that situation, but I’m not quite there yet, so what else could have gotten me excited about a meal of pimentos? Well, add a little cheese to the equation in the form of Funky Friend. Now we’re cookin’. It would be lovely to see Funky every day, as she works for the same company. I’m sufficiently interested in the meal at this point. Add some mayo and my mouth is almost watering. I don’t have to travel? Count me in. A dash of Worcestershire sauce with a steady pay check. Now that’s a meal. I guess you could say I was getting pretty excited about digging in.

Any idea where I’m about to go with this?  They offered the position to someone else. Why? Because as of last week, my permanent address was in a different city.    F. M. L.
Someone spread my perfect pimento cheese on a piece of rye bread. And I hate rye bread.

I really need for something to work out, folks. It’s just time for some good karma to roll my way. I’m a nice person, thoughtful and sweet. I don’t say mean things to people, I don’t yell, I don’t torture animals, I don’t deal drugs or steal lollipops from little kids. I’m trying to be as responsible as I can given my certain set of somewhat abnormal circumstances. Why does everything always seem to fall apart? I’m not asking for everything to fall into place without any effort on my part… quite the contrary. I am willing to go the extra mile. I’m willing to work in one city and maintain a home and marriage in another. Why can’t a potential employer look at that as a sign of willingness to go that extra mile for a job, instead of a liability? Come on, people! Give me a chance to show what I can do!!

FML, dudes, FML.

This post could go multiple directions based on the title. I think, though, I’ll focus on the different bosses I’ve had during my years as a lifeguard.

My very first boss of my entire life was about six years my senior. I was seventeen at the time. He was good looking, single, and an idiot. Therefore, he became my boyfriend. He was my boss for two months, and my boyfriend for two years. Waste. Of. Time.

As the pool board didn’t really approve of his methods, he was soon replaced by a college girl who was more interested in the upcoming rush events with her sorority than in saving lives. It was pretty obvious she knew she was a temporary hire and couldn’t care less if she were hired back the following summer.

Then came Ms. G. What a lady. I have to be honest that I didn’t care very much for her at first – she was one of those “adult guards” that irritated me so much as a young life-saver. Plus, she had a knack for writing memos when she had a problem with the way any of us were handling our jobs instead of just talking to us about it. But she grew on me. Considering she was my boss for two or maybe even three more summers (and is still my sister’s boss) it’s a good thing we ended up getting along so well. She’s a sweetheart who is much more relaxed than I gave her credit for at first. She schedules half hour breaks for guards like, every three hours or something. Not even my idiot ex-boyfriend did that!

And then my husband and I moved to Mobile, where I was still in school but needed a summer job. Turns out the only thing I was qualified to do was lifeguard (still feels like that’s about all I’m qualified to do), so I took a job at the local country club as the Assistant Aquatics Director – a fancy title for what amounted to “head lifeguard.” The aquatics director I worked under was also a high school football coach. He had his good moments, but I think he can best be summed up by his favorite quote: “If you have time to lean, you have time to clean.” There was no relaxing at this country club, not to mention the fact that working at a country club where you are not even close to being a member is very degrading and stressful. So many people with such high standards. Unrealistically high standards, particularly when it comes to teenagers. So Coach had a lot of work to do to keep us all in line (despite my non-teenager status), though he did tend to go overboard on occasion. He yelled at me once from one end of the pool deck while I was in the other. I can’t remember what on earth he was yelling about, but it really upset me. That was my first opportunity to stand up for myself and I think I did a pretty good job. And then, at the end of the summer, I quit, and haven’t been back. Mobile Country Club, I fear we’ll never meet again. I just don’t think I’ve got Country Clubs in my future, unless they want me to lifeguard for them!

Well, folks, that concludes the Lifeguard Chronicles. I hope they were enjoyed! Until next time… -LH

I don’t want to make any definitive statements (that’s not my style), but it looks like I’m not going to be a traveling saleswoman for much longer. Why does everything cost money? And why is money so hard to get?

So I’m looking for something new. Nothing fancy, mind you, but something with a steady pay check that reflects the amount of time and effort I put into it.

I’m thinking clerical work. It’s satisfying in that it is easily completed and you can leave work at work. I think I need something low stress for awhile. I’ve taken on the high stress jobs and they really aren’t working for me.

My husband and I just celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary, and the title of this post got me thinking back to my “Something old, etc…” things from my wedding. Let me think…

My something old was my grandmother’s garter, and since I returned it to her, it was also my something borrowed. My something new was the pearl earrings Hubby gave me as a wedding gift. For something blue, I wore a baby blue thong. Haha. That still cracks me up, as it was the one and only occassion I’ve felt compelled to wear a thong. And I had this humongous dress with absolutely zero chance of showing a panty-line. Funny how that felt like the right thing to do at the time, though.

I just sat here for awhile trying to find one more “something new” vignette to tie this post into a nice little bow but I’ve got nothing. Here’s my incredibly pathetic attempt:

Anyone looking for something new in their lives, like a five or six year old cat with a lot of love left to demand from anyone willing to give it? Anyone?

Bummer. I guess it was worth a shot. Stay tuned for next time, when I have something new for you 🙂