Back in February, I was discussing my quarter-life crisis with a good friend and trying to figure out what I should do. You should know that this happened post-breakup, post-becoming unemployed, post-severe anxiety, and I was a wreck. My friend and I talked about school, and I mentioned how I’d love to go back, as, at that time, I wasn’t meeting people, wasn’t feeling fulfillment with my degree, and wasn’t sure about my life. Something about school just drew me in. I talked with several Institute teachers about it and came to the conclusion that Heavenly Father wanted me to be doing more with my life and making my own choices, so I chose to pursue going back to school.
Well, a few weeks ago I received a letter informing me that I have been re-accepted at Utah State University to try for a second bachelor’s degree. Guys…I’M GOING BACK TO SCHOOL!
I’ve never been more excited. Not even the first time I went to school. Given, I hated Utah State the first time I went to school, but that’s another story.
It took me four years and a degree to know what I want to do with my life, but I am there. Which is why I’m going to be studying marketing with an entrepreneurship minor. I’m so, so excited to combine my English know-how with marketing, and my dream is to run my own business one day or watch a start-up that I’m a part of make it big. Maybe I’ll be on Shark Tank one day! Who knows?
My life is more than a 9-5 office job kind of life, though. I can’t get myself to even consider that. If there’s one lesson I’ve learned in my year of being a college graduate, it’s this: dreams are hard, but I’d rather do the unpractical thing and endlessly pursue them than sacrifice them for security. I only have one life, and I do not want it to be mediocre, filled with jobs I never wanted and things I never did.
THAT being said, unemployment is a beast, and right now, some job security would be very nice.
I have been unemployed for approximately six months now. I try not to complain or fret about it, but now, especially since I’m pursuing a second bachelor’s degree, unemployment is a doozy. FAFSA will not supplement any costs for a second degree. It’s also very difficult to even find grants or scholarships for a second degree student under the age of 25. If I wasn’t so convinced that going back to school is right, I wouldn’t be doing it. Finding a job, let alone tuition money, for me, is going to be a parting of the Red Sea kind of miracle.
But unemployment has taught me some valuable lessons. First, you can in fact be very productive as an unemployed individual, especially as an artist/writer. You can be so darn productive that you exhaust yourself. (Guys, I’ve been writing so much crap lately, you don’t even know. And by crap, I mean awesome stuff. And by awesome stuff, I mean go check out Mormon Buzzz.com. Really. Do it. Shameless promotion here.)
Second, unemployed people aren’t lazy louts like we sometimes horrifically assume. I learned this after about the 6th job interview I’d had in a month. Interviewing is hard.
Third, in life, you get rejected. Lots of times. Sometimes over email, sometimes in the mail. It hurts.
Fourth, life moves onward. The more rejections you receive, the less deterred you seem to be. It’s an odd equation. You always hear about Thomas Edison saying, “Harharhar, I learned 999 ways to not create a lightbulb!” And if you’re like me, you always go, Come on now, Thomas. You just wasted your life 999 times. But the truth is that rejection makes victory so much more enticing, so much sweeter. The first might hurt a bunch, but after that, rejection just becomes a part of fighting and enduring.
So even though hunting for a job and not getting it is incredibly frustrating,
you have to keep on keeping on.
That being said, please oh please let me know if you know of any jobs before I start thrift store flipping old crap on Cache Valley Classifieds for an extra buck.
But work. School. I’m so excited, except for that teensy tiny time when I realized that I’m going to have to take the first math class I’ve taken in six years and also my very first ever 7 am class.
Do I like that? No. Do I have a choice? No. But this is the path that I’ve chosen, so come what may, I will love it.
Some fantastic news is that I got asked to be a graphic design intern for the Utah State University Student Association! It’s unpaid, but I originally applied for a paid position, which means they must have liked me enough to try to make something work out. They like me, guys, they like me!
Do you ever just mentally list all of the stuff you’re doing or have done with your life and go, “Wow, I’m building a cool life right now”? That’s me. That’s what I’m doing. It’s wonderful.
So even though I’m not sure how I’m going to pay for school, and even though I’m very concerned with finances, and even though math is the bane of my existence, I am so happy. I’m the poorest I’ve ever been, but also the most content. I’m using my agency and I’m chasing my dreams, and those things bring me joy.
Also: I just started Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, so when I’m not going to Institute or church, I’m basically going to be dead to the world.