I’ve been unwittingly thrust into the job market during a recession. I hadn’t planned for this, although I haven’t been planning at all.
When I first started working out of college, I was lucky enough to make a connection that put me in a guaranteed position. The work was seasonal but I was good about saving for the dry months and working all I could when the work poured in. A few years ago I had the fortune to stumble into another lucrative job, and the excitement of a change in career field was exhilarating. I heard people whispering of economic downturns, rising unemployment, woes and strife, but I paid it no mind since I was turning down work because I simply didn’t feel like it and I could afford to do so. Then came I decided I could do better and and used my contract as kindling to burn the bridge.
I was doing fine. The first year the toll of not working was hardly noticeable. First there was all the to-do of getting married and being a newlywed. That all settled down right as a very busy season rolled in and I was working so much that I forgot it wasn’t guaranteed anymore. I was taking home a good serving of hubris with every fat paycheck. But when I missed the vital winter holiday season and changes were made within that made getting the work even harder. Like a factory closing down a floor and shoving all those people into another, suddenly I had competition. It was no longer simply good enough to be just available all the time.
As money started going out more than it was coming it, I began to panic. It was getting harder and harder to not worry about all the little things and I was making myself a nervous wreck sweating the small stuff. The worry about money combined with the understimulation of not working took a hard toll on my relationships. I just about gave into the depression of it all. The stress of being bored was just too much for me.
I can’t exactly tell you when the turning point it. I’m certainly still hurting for the work but at least I’m branching out now. I’m looking into alternatives that still utilize my skills. I think I let that old bastard Pride narrow down my field of options but I’m taking back control. Pride should be reserved for the worker I am, not the work I do. It doesn’t matter if you’re a shit shoveler or a CEO, there’s something in the work you do to be proud of. I find myself sometimes thinking I can’t go back to my old field of work or that taking something not in the limelight is going to somehow be a sign of failure to others. But you know what, fuck them, they don’t know my path and for that matter neither do I. I just know the destination and as long as I’m still walking I know I’m going to get there.