For Gilmore Girls fans that date has a meaning.
For some, that weekend meant celebrating a new chapter in their lives.
For me, it marked one month of being jobless.
Where is this declaration coming from you ask? Well, I spent that weekend back home. I had graduation parties for girls I knew who had grown up to become beautiful women and were moving on to this awesome new phase of their lives: college. Standing in a room and looking at a young adult who you knew before they could do much by themselves, I couldn’t help but think about who I was at 18. Surrounded by the glory that is youth at the time of high school graduation really brings on the nostalgia, yah know. It is a marker. A milestone. A turning point.
Standing in front of them at 24, I felt strangely connected to these girls only with slightly less direction because I didn’t have college set out in front of me. I just had choices, decision, and and many open ended questions in front of me without the luxury of classes and assignments helping me fill the cracks in the road as I walked the path to find my purpose. But that wasn’t the scariest realization of the weekend. No that came as I headed to the first party and realized that I would be seeing the parents, older siblings, and community members who knew me and probably hadn’t seen me in a while. They would ask how I was and what I was up to. This thought petrified me. Over the last few weeks,I had dealt with the blow that was my company needing to downsize and my being let go. It was what it was—no hard feelings. I had told my friends and loved ones. I have had so much support in this time. But the embarrassment of explaining to people I hadn’t seen in years that I didn’t currently have a job, a societal marker that signals I have some semblance of success in the world considering I wasn’t a wife or mother yet (insert sigh here), was so real.
I thought I had accepted that this was where I was right now and was supposed to be. That there was a plan. But here I was, dreading telling people and feeling embarrassed and ashamed to admit it all over again. That isn’t a fun feeling. I even managed to sound like an idiot a time or two when the topic came up and I tried to glide over the answer.
“I refuse to be ashamed that I can’t impress anyone with a job title at the moment.”
By Sunday, I was exhausted and ready to be a recluse to recover for the previous day. Monday would bring the harsh reality of job hunting when I woke up on and the ebb and flow of worry that hits sporadically no matter how much you trust that God has a plan and this is a part of it. By Monday, I am back in my apartment, away from my home town, and slept a little more. I woke up and started journaling and time gives perspective, right?
I realized I knew that I was where I was supposed to be right now. Yes, it is scary. Yes, I have no idea what I am doing. Yes, I am by some people’s standard a bit of a failure right now. But do you know what the one message is that I keep hearing echoed all around me, from corners I didn’t I even know existed: “Find what you love. Do what you love. And don’t settle for any less.”
I don’t know exactly what that looks like yet. I don’t know what that means yet. But I do know that it is nothing to be ashamed of. I politely refuse to be ashamed that I can’t impress you with a job at the moment.
So for any one who I sounded like an idiot in front of that weekend, it was me not you and I’m sorry for that. But I am currently unemployed and don’t get out much. So please, don’t hold it against me.
For now, I am going to take this time to get to know my own heart.