Four months ago I started a new job. The idea behind the job was that I was going to be a sensible adult, and build skills that would catapult me into the next stages of working life. A higher wage, a managerial position, some development skill, maybe project manager, and finally some paid teaching opportunities. I was also going to work in a respected non-profit. Granted, it was for a fairly low wage, and I would have to give up some of my writing time. It was an apprenticeship, just a year, and I was ready to pay some dues (even though I feel like I’ve spent my life paying dues).
It didn’t go so well. It wasn’t exactly what it was advertised to be. I spent a majority of my time working in a warehouse style setting, lugging 50 lbs to 70 lbs computers, servers, and old crt-tv’s around. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not afraid of manual labor, but I was hoping to finally use my brain versus brawn, especially if I was going to give up precious hours of writing. I gave up all hours of writing because I was too tired to sit and write something longer than a sentence. So, I did something I haven’t done in a long time. I quit. Great people, great cause, but it wasn’t the job that I had applied for so I ended my contract early, and this little blog post is the first writing I have done in nearly three and a half months. It feels good.
I still have a week left before returning to the gift store where I had previously worked. The gift store isn’t my dream job either, since I’m not interested in pursuing the path of retail, but it gives me the money I need to pay my bills, and the time I need to write, and to plan for my future. Plus the people there are supportive of my dreams and they are my little dysfunctional family.
The traditional paths are failing me. I need to be more creative in my pursuits. Even though I just wrote I need to be more creative in my pursuits, I am taking the first steps toward grad school. This may sound fairly traditional especially for people from educated middle class families and up, but I’m not from that family background. My background includes, welfare, poverty, homelessness, drug abuse, uprooting, and all the makings of some perseverance memoir, if I were to ever make a name for myself. I’m not interested in making a name, but I am interested in grad school. I’d be the first person in my entire family history to go, and I want the intensive two to three-year commitment to writing. It may be my only opportunity to be so committed. For me it isn’t the traditional route it is the forbidden route the path only “allowed to those with money,” forbidden in my mind that is. It isn’t very creative though and I will admit that, also it isn’t guaranteed and I may not be able to afford it, but it’s worth the effort as I rack my brain for interesting alternatives towards having a job you love that pays you versus having a job just to get by.
And somewhere along the way maybe I can get back onto my artistic path; writing, theatre, poetry, photography, film, dance whatever, I don’t care as long as I am in it, and not watching it from afar, wishing that I was that person on the stage. I don’t want to wish to be anyone, but myself. That is why it is imperative that I do what I love.