Good news in the world of me!

January 29, 2010 at 3:50 am (Uncategorized)

Although this was not what I wished for for my birthday, I have recently received word that my job that had been eliminated… aka the reason I started this chronicle of my frustrations after being laid off– well, that job exists once more. I am to report to work on Monday like nothing ever happened. YES!!!!

It’s funny. I finally have one experience in my job search worth something– the job fair on my birthday– and then boom! Back to work. I’m not complaining. I’m thrilled. I’m waiting for the phone call that says “just kidding!”

I’m still in that place where I’m ambivalent about where this job will lead, since it’s not in my preferred career field. But I’m going to go back to work in relief, build up some savings, and maybe travel a bit for training. Then I’ll reevaluate. After all, there is something to actually gaining work experience in one job before you start looking for the next one.

Since I was in such a good mood from my good news, I’ll share something funny I found spoofing the State of the Union. It’s funny!


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My Birthday

January 27, 2010 at 3:27 am (Uncategorized)

Hello everyone! I got confirmation today that someone else out there besides me actually reads my blog. Thanks Nicole! Your note was really timely and made my day seem a bit brighter. We’re in this together– if there’s ever anything I can do for you, let me know.

Today is my twenty-fourth birthday. I had a pretty good one, considering how broke we are and how far away most of my good friends live. I woke to Charles bringing home roses and a box of chocolates (not bad, not bad!). I purposely didn’t open the box right away so as to attempt to not eat all of them by lunchtime. The flowers are lovely, white and pink roses and some baby’s breath.

My phone was ringing off the hook all day and I’ve already made plans to hang out with friends over the next few weeks– long overdue! So thanks to everyone who remembered without the help of facebook– thought you got away with it, didn’t you guys? Just kidding. If facebook has to remind you, that’s ok too. Thanks to all! I accept all forms of payment, including paypal… sike! But really I do have paypal. Just sayin’.

Today I also attended a job fair. I feel pretty good about it, too. Most of the employers were contractors to the base, and I was able to talk to every single one. I must have handed out at least twenty resumes and got information about over 50 postings that are current for my area, most of which I am halfway qualified for! So, all in all I’m happy.

Funny thing happened too. I saw this girl from high school who absolutely loathes me. And the best part? She has to have gained at least thirty pounds since I last saw her! I know it’s wrong to revel in such trivial matters, but believe me, if this girl had tortured you the way she tortured me in high school, you’d be crowing with delight too. I even managed to avoid talking to her– she was recruiting for a firm that I’m interested in working for– and their company is hiring for positions for which I really hope to get an interview. Now I’m just worried that she’ll “inadvertently” toss my resume when she gets back to the office. But there are laws against that… right?

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Crossroads and Confusion

January 21, 2010 at 4:35 pm (Uncategorized)

So it’s a new year, and somehow I feel like I am missing out on an opportunity for a new me. Unfortunately, I don’t know exactly which opportunity I’m missing out on, since I feel myself being pulled in multiple directions.

Lately, as you know, I’ve been looking into changing careers. I worked for the Navy for a year as an analyst, and while I was good at what I was doing, I really did not like it very much. I felt like I was trapped in a cubicle with a neverending supply of spreadsheets to work on. Even when I got alternate assignments… like creating macros for Excel to automate days-worth of calculations and manipulations, or performing schedule analysis with really cool and expensive software that used Monte Carlo simulations to predict the best, worst and most likely scenarios for given outcome… I felt like those were just ancillary to what I was going to be stuck doing (the spreadsheets) for the rest of my career.

When I went to college, I was dead set on being a scientist. The job market did not agree with my plans and I only got job offers for positions in mathematics. The issue was, most scientific careers that are in growing industries are either engineering or forensic in nature. I have a strong interest in both, but my degree is in neither. All that matters to a job recruiter in the first round is the subject in which you received your degree. Although NAVAIR had plenty of engineering positions, there was a strict requirement for having a bachelors in an engineering discipline. So I was pretty much limited to either cost analysis, schedule analysis, or both. And those are math positions with very limited interaction with engineers.

Right now I am working in the social services field. I have experience from my college days working with people with special needs, so when I had the opportunity to look for a position in my hometown, after I exhausted the limited options for my background in math and science (after all, most places require 5-10 years of experience… my single year as a cost analyst really did nothing for me), I looked for something in social services because it is something that I already knew I could do well. I got hired as a rehabilitation associate for Pathways, Inc. last month. I enjoy the work– I go out to group homes for adults living with mental illness and assist them in working on their rehabilitation goals, which usually include developing skills in independent living, money management, medication and health management and communication. But as anyone who has ever worked in this field can attest, I do not make enough money to survive. I am living paycheck to paycheck, and if it were not for my fiance, we would have already lost our home. This can only work for so long, and then I will need to find something that pays better.

And the reality is, while I can live with working in social services, I really do not feel like my heart is in the work. My heart belongs to science! And in this economy, with the market flooded with jobless, bachelors degree-bearing individuals with minimal experience, I have no leg to stand on in the field where I truly want to work. I need a Masters, at the very least. And to get a Masters, I still need three or four undergrad courses to qualify for the programs in which I want to study. I live in the middle of nowhere and those classes are not available here. So what to do? I certainly cannot afford to move right now. I also work a strange schedule (either 7 am-3pm or 3-11 pm on most weekdays, and 10 am-6 pm on the weekends) which will make taking any class difficult anyway.

I feel like I am treading water and I really hate that. I’m at a crossroads… and I’m really confused about which path to take.

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