Searching for what to be

November 2, 2011 § 2 Comments

The snow is back, but my camera is still on the fritz. Sigh.

I wish I had more to share with you, pictures of this frosty wonderland, and how everything melts. The mud. The wet gloves. The things we are wearing and eating and drinking to keep warm.

But I suppose we have plenty of winter to come. And once I have more employment I might buy a new camera and there will be photos again! (This blog misses them, don’t you think?)

I am spending hours on the computer on the days that I am home, searching for short-term part-time jobs and long-term full-time jobs. This is a stressful thing, and not at all something that makes one feel good about oneself, unless, unlike me, you had a perfectly direct route from high school graduation through college and into the work force and a viable career. Mine has been winding, very, and I have learned a lot and seen a lot and am so grateful for a lot. I have collected experiences like coins in a bank, to be gathered and treasured and drawn upon when needed, and even though they haven’t exactly built upon each other systematically, or traditionally, as some do – I believe they will ultimately come together towards just the right purpose (or even more than one purpose, at the same time, or perhaps one after another). I even think I have a pretty good hunch about what that might be.

But it is sometimes hard to remember that, while sifting through the possible roles other people would like to have someone – possibly or possibly not me – play. Am I that person they seek? Have I build up the right amount of experience in the right way? And whether I have or I haven’t, can I show them that I can be that person anyway? The more I wade through these questions the more the doubts arise. The doubter begins to self-critique, not very nicely, and then the self-defensive cynic steps in and begins to wrestle with self-critical doubter. (Neither of these selves is my favorite.) I can’t help but look at where I am compared to others, and to question what I am doing with my life, and then how easy it becomes to look back at the series of suddenly very wrong steps. But they didn’t often feel wrong at the time, and from another perspective at another time they have seemed to, and hopefully will again, look right.

It doesn’t do much good to blame the big bad world or your sorry little soul. You can only do the best you can in the moment you have, with the information you have. Trust yourself, move forward, seek out the best that the world has to offer and the best that you can be in it, for the time being, where you are . . . and eventually, where you will be.

Optimism and perseverance – these are the things I shall be stubborn about maintaining. I’ll hold them tightly while searching jobs and sending out resumes, and in the times that I’m not doing this papery footwork, I will be wise to go sit in some quiet open space and fall into the relief of prayer. To remember that as hard as I work I don’t have to take care of myself all alone.

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§ 2 Responses to Searching for what to be

  • Liz says:

    Do you want to stay where you are or are you looking further afield? You’ve put into words well what I’ve felt in the past and what I’m feeling now even as I consider the “what’s next??” question–which given the economy and my varied work background and everything else, feels a little overwhelming. My thoughts are with you and I look forward to hearing what comes your way next.

    • Erica says:

      Hi Liz! It means a lot to me that you take the time to write here . . . I love seeing comments. As for work, I’m exploring here and there, and open to going to several different states, as long as they aren’t too dry or too far south. I wasn’t planning to stay in Colorado even two months after I first moved here, but somehow I keep having things happen that result in my staying. So I don’t know! But I am excited to go to North Carolina next week and check out some opportunities there. I am so, so on the same page as you, with the varied work background, and I’m confident that in the long-term it will serve me well, but in the short term it’s not always helpful. Fill me in on what you’re doing in Oregon? And what do you hope to be doing (this question is allowed to have more than one answer)? Where would you like to live? How are you in general? I’ve enjoyed reading your food blog, by the way!

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