I’m (newly) 31 years old and have held a job for the better part of the last 17 years. I’ve swept hair at a salon, cashiered at a grocery store, worked my way from an aide to a teacher to an assistant director at early childhood centers. I’ve been an administrative assistant, an office manager (this position alone actually has a thousand sub-headings), and a marketing assistant. I’ve done family photography for several years. I’ve written 3 books (and have even seen some time on best seller lists). I know Social Media, Outlook, Excel, Office, PowerPoint. I’d say this all counts for something.
So why is it so hard find a job that doesn’t involve me right back to where I started, ringing up groceries and asking a customer if they want paper or plastic? And am I running the risk of becoming this:
I left my full-time job after Ben was born. We didn’t have a choice, and I don’t regret doing everything we’ve done to keep our preemie healthy and safe. And with a lot of sweat, blood and tears (and the occasional migraine…okay, more than occasional) we’ve made it 15 months with me technically “unemployed”. But it can’t last forever, and my goal lately has been to try and find a job that isn’t just ringing up groceries. And let me be clear, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being a cashier. A job is job, and money is money, and food on the table is food on the table.
But after almost two decades of work, do I really want to put such a “step down” on a resume? Isn’t it bad enough in this male driven work world that I left a job at all to “just be a mom”? What happens if I cashier, and then in a few years when Ben is older and I’m ready to work full-time again I have to explain why I went from a career to a cashier?
So I’ve been looking around, and it’s been stressful. And disappointing. I interviewed back in January for a company that got me so far along in the process that I did a job shadow and a background check…and then I never heard from them again. I interviewed last week for a design and communication position and while the job was perfect for me, they need the 20 hours to be filled in the morning and in the afternoon. I did some shakey math and even if we put Ben in daycare 15-20 hours/week, and juggled the heck out of Dustin work schedules, I would probably be making very little after the cost of putting Ben in daycare.
Isn’t it 2015, a world in which working remote has taken over the traditional expectations of being chained to a desk? How does one find the remote positions? Or at the very least, a job that uses my skills and dare I say a bit of my passions and interests that fills a need during the late afternoon and weekends? I’ll even give up my weekends and time with my family if it means we get to keep Ben at home.
So the search continues. I know that something will come up, I just wish it wasn’t hiding itself so well.