Putting it all out there, you guys: up close and personal. Buckle in, because it’s going to be a rough ride.
About a month and a half ago, I gave up. I’d been trying for months to get things in my life moving forward: My career, my relationship, my future. My efforts were not paying off, and I lost patience.
I started day-dreaming about moving to Columbus and starting all over again. Sound familiar?
In 2010, I broke up with my boyfriend, quit the job I hated, and moved to Chicago. It felt like freedom.
Now in 2013, I was facing the possibility of doing it again, except with going back home. It felt a lot more like failure.
Earlier this summer, I knew I had a career and I had an amazing boyfriend. But neither was going anywhere, at least not in the direction I wanted. There’s only so long that can go on before a person starts to go crazy, and I had reached my breaking point in both areas.
I told Kevin about my plans to go back home. I won’t get into the details of how that conversation went, or how long it took, or how many mood swings I experienced, but several impossibly-long days later, Kevin and I agreed we both wanted to make our relationship work.
In case it wasn’t already clear, my idea of it working involves us getting engaged relatively soon. We do not agree on this view of things. We decided to go to couples counseling to see what can be done about this difference of opinion.
The day after we decided to stay together and in Chicago, I applied for a job at an online news site here.
About a week later, I was asked to interview, which I did. Then I interviewed again and again. I took a skills test and was offered a job after two weeks of thorough examination.
I was on vacation when they asked me to put in my two weeks’ notice. They said they’d get confirmation of my hiring from headquarters the next day and send me my offer letter.
It makes me laugh now to think about how I’d had this whole completely different blog post planned out in my head; I was going to tell you how glad I was that I started my own website because it helped me land this sweet new job, and how Stephen Thompson was right about how you just need to do the thing you want to be doing, and how you too can have what you want if you only put the work toward getting it.
It was going to be a journalism fairy tale, an ending to the year-long story of 60625.
But I heard nothing the next day from my future employer. I did not put in my two weeks’ notice. And thank God I didn’t, because that company had a nuclear meltdown last Friday, and instead of hiring me they will likely be laying off hundreds. My job no longer exists.
The woman who would have been my boss emailed me today, saying how sorry she was about the way things went down, and how she’d looked forward to having me join her team.
I liked her. I liked everyone I talked to at that company. Plus, they were the last show in town, and they’re probably packing up to leave as I write this. My field is dead and I feel incredibly trapped in an unrelated position. I love my current company, but they can’t give me what I need for my chosen career path. Now I’m not sure if anyone can.
I feel somehow lower than I did a month and a half ago. That was before the job of my dreams was yanked out from under me, back when I didn’t know any better about how much things were going to suck in a few weeks. It was before couples counseling, which is heavy and ugly and painful and we have to go on Saturdays and no one will tell me for how long.
At least I know counseling is the only way we’ll get the answers to some tough questions. I am willing to put in the effort there, as hard as it feels to do sometimes.
I am less clear on where I can get the answers about my job or what I can do next.
I am in constant need of a thing to plan, or a thing to work toward and look forward to. This week that horizon is looking emptier than it ever has and I have never felt so stuck.
So there it is. It’s not pretty, but it’s honest and that’s all I can muster for now.
Thanks for reading the whole thing.