Monday, August 1, 2011

On First Jobs

Today my niece takes the next step in becoming a productive member of society.

She begins her first job.

It got me thinking about my first job, and the long line of employment opportunities that came after it.

I've had...well, let's be honest... a lot.

From my first job the summer of my junior year, to finding myself as a writer, I've done just about everything. Honestly, I had a hard time sticking to any job for longer than a couple of months. I'd get bored, annoyed with the stupidity of my coworkers, or I'd find something better.

There was always something better.

My longest job lasted two years, and I was twenty-three. I was a tech-department and cell phone representative for Circuit City--before it went belly up. I stuck with the job for two reasons. One: I needed the money to pay bills, and Two: I felt like I owed them. Not because they were an amazing company to work for, but because when I was at my lowest, the management and my coworkers, had my back.

When I got married, and my husband and I got transferred to Hawaii, I continued my day job. At least until it came time for his first deployment, and I wanted to actually see him before he left to a war zone for seven months. Who knew that large corporations didn't care about things like that?

Art is subjective, and art school was expensive. 
I've worked as a telemarketer, a pizza maker, a soldier, a pageant princess, a substitute teacher for special needs, a dating service counselor, a make-up artist, a model, and my personal 'favorite'--a housekeeper for a small, low class, hotel chain.

I spent five years as a professional photographer, providing tangible memories of weddings, graduations, births, and military reunions-- only to realize my passion for photography was outmatched by my need to not be a portrait photographer. I loved the art of photography, not the cookie cutter, conveyor belt version most of the population expects. After more and more military wives with their new cameras opened up shop as photographers, I threw in the tripod for the focus of photography as art.

I'll never make it rich that way, and I'm okay with that.

After the birth of my daughter I realized something in my life was missing. Not family, or the love of a good man; I had those. I was missing a part of me I hadn't seen since I was eighteen.

The writer.

I was first published in junior high at the ripe old age of thirteen. Nothing spectacular, just a few dark, angst filled poems about the usual teenage drama--though my prose might have been just a tiny bit darker than average. Once I graduated and got away from the hallowed halls of purgatory, I tried to write my first novel.

It was a colossal vat of failure.

Not because it was rejected by publishers, but because I never finished it. I had the story idea, but not enough know how or understanding to complete it.

I found it recently, and it wasn't half bad.

After the demise of my potential writing career I put the dream away for over a decade until one amazing bundle of joy brought that spark back.

You know what? I learned a lot about books in a decade.

I've written three novels in the last year and a half. One needs extensive work before I'll be willing for it to see the light of day, and two of them are going through editing. Whether or not they get picked up via a traditional publisher or I decide to self publish, I know one day, not too far in the future they'll be available for others to enjoy.

It took a while, but I've finally found something I can stick with, and I'm sure, someday, my niece will find her calling too. Until then, I'm proud of her for taking the first step in figuring it out.

Congrats, T-Dawg, you're an adult now.


No comments:

Post a Comment