This week I received my diploma, the final reminder that I had actually graduated and that it was time to find a “real” job; yesterday I received a brochure to take a river cruise with Viking Cruise lines. Both of these things scare me for one simple reason: they are unknown.
Up until now I’ve had 3 part time jobs- I flip burgers as a short order cook for fast food; I worked as a seasonal worker with a department store in the mall which was the worst job in the world (imagine waking up at 3,4 or 5 am to stock bed sheets and fold towels); finally there is my favorite job to date, sample girl for a food warehouse. It’s fun and I meet interesting and new people every day I work. I ask myself now: how have any of these jobs prepared me to tackle a real job? A job that comes with the responsibility of working, at least, 7-4 every day (did I mention that my degree is a Bachelor of Science in High School Education with an emphasis in English?). That kind of commitment frightens me, how am I supposed to be a role model for the teenagers of today? If you asked me point blank what I think of teenagers I’d probably tell you that they are an interesting breed of people and that I’m almost certain I still am one. I haven’t graduated to the stage in development when the world ceases revolving around me. When I turned 23 last August I was upset that there wasn’t any fanfare accompanying the point at which I could never be 22 again and sing “22” by Taylor Swift and mean it anymore. It was depressing and I felt unloved by everyone I know. If that isn’t the reaction of a teenager then obviously I didn’t “teenager” like everyone.
As for the second thing that scares me: travel. I’m desperately afraid of leaving my comfort zone. For me the world will continue to revolve in it’s perfect sphere as long as I continue to pretend I am still a teenager. My dad still pays my damn bills for God’s sake. I have no real responsibility to do anything except pay for my own gas and bring home the occasional grocery item. At the same time I want to shrug off the boring sameness of the rural countryside I currently see everyday of my life. I want to explore this country, this continent, even this world (and maybe others later, you know, when/ if possible. I’m making a joke people, please laugh). Nightly I look forward to the day that my “Get Out of Missouri” Fund will bloom into fruition, that I will finally get out of this boring little state. Except that lately the reality that I need to find a real job has dimmed the bulb of possibility.
What caused this dimming? The idea of failure, the chance that I would risk everything and disappoint the people that have helped me the most. What happens if I can’t make it work, if I come dragging home one day with no money and no chance to do anything better than be stuck in this hell home of existence depending on the whimsy of the fast food industry to re-hire me? Prodigal Son (Daughter) stories only happen in the Bible and I fear that my father would be too disappointed in me, the daughter that has the “brightest” future. I was (am?) going to the one child of six that will finally make a better life than the others.
I think maybe, hopefully, that there is something out there in the world that is waiting for me to get off my duff and finally take the chance to find it. I just need to find the thing that i want most and let myself have it (kind of like magic from that old Disney movie Halloweentown).
My goal for this month is to overcome failure, I have no idea how I’m going do it but I know that everyday that I get out of bed is a cause for celebration. Maybe February isn’t about failure but rather about celebrating small victories that come from everyday life. I finished two books today, that calls for a celebration…I’ll think I’ll start a new book tonight. I hope dear readers that we will float from the bottom of our doldrum lives to the top of the blue- blue sky like helium balloons. Just be sure to keep those pesky kids from stealing your balloon and sucking all the helium from it. Our lives are limitless in their possibilities and it’s the small things that will change them. Who knows, if it hadn’t snowed tonight I might have gone to the bar and met the guy of my dreams or found my sugar daddy who would finance my wildest dreams. Instead I’ll be curling up on the sofa with a new book, my cat and a cup of hot chocolate.
One day when we’re drifting along in the stars I hope the world shines brightest for us. After all the world belongs to us dreamers and the only way to make those dreams a success is to celebrate every victory, no matter how small. So dear reader, get excited and celebrate anything that makes you smile. I’ll try to be a bit better at accountability and let you know how I’m doing this month.