Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Wondering What To Do

What do I want to do? WHAT do I want to do?

Well, right now, I want to go back to bed, seeing as I’m writing this around 5:30 a.m. (I just yawned so big my jaw cracked!). (Oops, I did it again!) (Sorry for the Britney Spears reference.)

Actually, what I’m talking about is my career. And I’m really conflicted about it.

There is a very real possibility I’ll lose my job in late 2008, early 2009. My organization is merging with four other organizations. I’ve known about it for a year. Our corporate headquarters in New York have given us plenty of advance notice on the merger and produced lots of materials to help all of us through the process. Unfortunately, there are no job guarantees for anyone.

It doesn’t automatically mean I’ll lose my job, but that there is a distinct possibility. And a possibility means I better start thinking about being prepared for that eventuality. Which leads me back to my question – WHAT do I want to do?

The reason I chose Communications as my major in college was because it was a stretchable major. I could make it fit many types of jobs. I mean, is there a job out there where good communication ISN’T necessary? Not really.

And lately, I’ve been feeling like what I really want is a nice, long vacation. I’ve taken several days off and enjoyed some long four day weekends – and it’s never long enough. I mean, NEVER long enough.

I want time. Time to do the mundane – laundry, cleaning, decorating, creative cooking, stuff like that. I want to work on my books for days, not hours. I want to be free from deadlines. I want to stay home. I don’t want to do any graphic design. Just for a little while. To be free to get caught up.

Aha, but you see for me that is not an option. For two reasons. First, I like to work. I thrive on the socialization and accomplishment. Secondly, we’d be in the poorhouse, or at least my mom’s house, if I didn’t work.

I married Brett because I love him - definitely not for his money and definitely not for his eventual prosperity. If we both had to live on the income of a warehouse worker, we’d be living with Mom and Gary. Seriously. My job provides the bulk of our income.

I’m okay with that. Brett’s GREAT with that. In fact, if I could make MORE money, he’d love to stay home, too! But, it does produce a certain amount of pressure. At times, I feel like my working years are stretched out endlessly in front of me.

See, I love my job. I do. But the possibility of losing it, no matter how well they’ve prepared us, no matter how willing they are to help us find new employment, has opened a door. I’ve got to start thinking about my career future. And since staying at home is not an option, I’ve got to start exploring the possibilities.

Which means I have to make a list of what I love about my job, what I like about my job, and what I really don’t care for in my job. That part is easy. The problem comes from finding an open job that incorporates those preferences, and of course, preparing my heart for whatever God opens up.

There are days when I envy people who can stay home. I don’t mean “work” from home. I mean those people who don’t have a set schedule and can stay in their pajamas and hair rollers all day, if they want to.

Because, just for a little while, I’d like to do that. Just to experience the freedom. Unfortunately, unless we win the lottery, it’s just not an option. And (since I’ve mentioned it twice now) I guess that really does bother me deep down – just NOT being able to have that as a possibility! Oh well, nothing I can do about it.

My original boss hired me on for this job as a writer. I wrote copy and did basic public relations. We hired on a professional designer for all our graphic design work.

Oh, sure, I did a little design. I even went to a couple seminars on it.

Then, my new boss (who I like SO much more than my old boss) started. She sees me more as her personal designer and herself as the writer.

Through the two years I have worked for her, I have struggled with this. First, over two years, I have learned that I don’t like doing graphic design. I can do it. I can even do it moderately well, but I’ll never be an expert or a professional, and I don’t want to be. Secondly, no matter how much I LIKE my boss, it still burns me that she took my writing opportunity away AND that she thinks she’s a better writer than I am.

So, as much as I like my job, it’s not like I can’t see myself doing something else. I would miss the amazing people I work with and their friendly every day camaraderie. But, I suppose I could manage.

So, I’ve got to start thinking about what I want to do. I mean, if I open up the windows for my dream jobs, I’d have lots of options. I could be an author, a columnist, or a movie reviewer. But, even if I’m serious, there are still jobs in public relations – maybe not right now – but eventually. And, obviously, God will open the doors He wants open for me – even if it’s NOT in public relations.

Still, I’d appreciate your prayers for God to guide and direct me. That I won’t worry and stress out about it. That I’ll be up for the challenge and willing to step out of my comfort zone – the one I’ve had for six years now. That I’d be content no matter what the circumstances. I’d appreciate it.

Oh, and if you want to pray that we DO win the lottery? You can, too! But I don’t think it (or He) works like that!

But, then again, who knows?

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