Amazed

Words can’t explain my gratitude to all of you.

I never imagined the outpouring of support from yesterday’s post. I thought maybe I came across as a little whiny and you would move on to the next blog you read. But I had to get it out there. I had to write it, and not only write it, but have you read it. Journals never helped me because I knew that it was still inside me, and me alone.

I’m teary eyed and having a hard time finding the words to say to you all.

I know this is a silly blog. Millions of people have them. And millions of people probably have better ones than I do. But you found mine and you read it. And yesterday, you commented. You gave advice. You expressed your support. You gave me warnings. And you sent virtual hugs and thoughts and prayers. You gave me hope when I was slowly losing every ounce I had mustered up to yesterday. You let me know that I’m not alone. That it isn’t my fault. And that you were thinking about me.

And for that, I thank you.

Thank you doesn’t really cut it. It may sound incredibly silly, but all day yesterday, every time I received a comment and read it, it brought a smile to my face and gave me a renewed sense of conviction. You made my day significantly better.

It showed me I can call you guys friends. Again, lame. But that’s how it felt. Still feels.

Maybe it’s the wine, but I’m super sentimental today.

So I’ll quit being a gushing ball of meh.

But I had some questions about your suggestions yesterday. I think every single one of you had amazing advice and ideas, but for some of them, I’m not sure where to look or how to start.

So, I’ll jump right in.

1. Temp agencies. Never really considered it, but I’m all for it. If someone else wants to put my name out there, more power to them. But how do they work? Also, how do I find one? Even more important, how can I tell if they’re shady and should avoid them? I don’t want to end up in a drug house. Or a scam.

2. Volunteering. How did you pick where to volunteer? Where do you volunteer? How do you find places and what types of places, generally, tend to need help? I looked into CASA, but I’m afraid of committing, finding a job, and then not having time to do it.

3. Non-profits. Okay, I understand what that means, but how do you get involved? I know some of you work for non-profits, so how does that work?

4. Political. Someone mentioned political campaigns. Now, I really have no desire to go door to door. That’s so not my thing. But what else might they need?

5. Retail. I worked at a shoe store when I was 16 because two of my friends worked there. How bad is it? Also, and I’m not going to be picky about hours, but will I be working Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and New Years? The only reason I’m concerned is because I’m a couple hours away from family. So, if I was home and working, no big deal if I have to work because it’s a 10 minute drive and they will wait for me. But if it’s 2 hours, I’m afraid I’ll miss every gathering. It’s something I’m looking into, especially since we live less than a mile from the mall, but just curious. (Please don’t think I’m being picky. Just curious what I’m getting into.)

 

Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. To those of you who have said you were in my position, thank you for the advice from someone who has been in the trenches and knows the struggle, emotionally and mentally. To those of you with jobs, thank you for telling me how you got those and please don’t think I’m not happy for you. I am. I’m happy you are providing for your family and not having to go through what I am right now. To those of you in my position, know you have a partner in crime. I, logically, know that it’s not my fault and I’m doing what I can. Same for you. We will get through this. No one knows how long this will take, but we will figure it out.

You are all wonderful and know how much you’ve helped someone this week. Treat yourself with a glass of wine or a margarita or a cookie or a pumpkin spice latte. You deserve it.

love you guys.

Advertisements

7 Comments

Filed under Blogging, Life After College

7 responses to “Amazed

  1. I volunteered with a local children’s hospital and also taught English as a Second Language to adults here in my area. You can also find your local legal aid office. They always need help. Most performing arts centers need volunteers as well. Their websites should have a volunteer section. You could even end up checking out a free opera or musical! Or look at http://www.volunteermatch.org. That website searches in your area for openings.

    As for temp agencies, I would search on google for staffing agencies in your area. Check out the websites and maybe look on the BBB site. Plus, you can always ask the agency for references. They want to help you so they will provide them.

    Good luck, sweetie! Let us all know how things are going and remember, we are totally here for you!!

  2. Notes from the Fatty File

    I think I found my old temp agency from a newspaper classified ad. This was the summer of 1998 (whoa, that seems like forever ago) and I just went on blind faith that it was a legit operation. If I were looking for temp agencies now, I’d google the hell out of them first. There are some national temp agencies, too — Man Power comes to mind. You may have an office in your city.

    As for volunteering, I’d look for organizations that share your values first. I just googled “volunteer in [insert my city here]” and a bunch of websites popped up, one of which is volunteermatch.org. That might be a good place to start. As someone with experience teaching, I bet you’d be a really valuable volunteer for something like adult literacy programs (check your library) or after-school tutoring for needy kids. I did tutoring for ESL kids all though high school; check with your school district for info, maybe?

    I don’t have experience job searching for nonprofit jobs but I do know that friends have gotten job leads through idealist.org, which should have listings available. Definitely pick up a newspaper and also check out Craigslist, too.

    Good luck! Something will come your way soon.

  3. I totally second both of Fatty File’s suggestions about adult literacy and after school volunteering. It demonstrates your continued dedication to your chosen field. A coworker of mine in PR just went back to school to get a master’s in social work, but the two years prior she participated in an after-school girls’ club that empowers girls to be more confident and goal-oriented. She made a ton of connections that way, ones that wrote her letters of recommendation for her masters program, etc.

    Holiday retail workers do get the short end of the stick. Permanent employees will get first choice about time off, but even most of them will work the crappier days. The trade-off is that holiday workers have a decent shot at being kept on after the holidays at a lot of stores, since retail turnover is relatively high (or at least it used to be when I worked retail (2002-2004). I would think that would probably still hold relatively true at places that tend to hire younger people, like apparel stores at the mall. I worked Christmas Eve one year, and since stores close so early that day, still made it in time to my mom’s church’s Christmas Eve service.

    I worked at a non-profit here in Austin for three years in college, and I don’t think it’s any easier to get a job there right now than at a for-profit corporation. It might even be harder, since non-profits likely have less funding and would rather you volunteer than go on payroll.

    Temp agencies take money out of your paycheck, but it is possible to get health insurance through them.

    Try to stay the course and apply only for jobs you are qualified for and the ones within the field you want to pursue. There have been tons of stories in the news that people who graduate college during a recession earn significantly less than their peers who graduated just before or just after the recession over the course of their entire career, and those who fall into a non-related field (say admin assistant) just to have something never catch up to those who found a job in the right field. So wait tables, work retail, and keep applying for the job you really want. Don’t give up!

  4. Oh I’m so glad you’re feeling better! Campaigns need EVERYTHING. Just find one, call and ask. Be firm about what you’re comfortable doing. They have huge files, emails, phones to be tended too, press requests to field, pretty much anything. MW always jokes that there is something from every major- the engineer can figure out how to keep the roof from caving in and the English majors can write to the press when it does. If you want any further advice feel free to email me!

  5. So as for volunteering and non-profits, try VolunteerMatch.com and Meet Up sites near you. That’s where we, as non-profits, post when we need help.

    You might also friend them on Facebook and see if they have anything going on that they may need help with. Calling or emailing the volunteer coordinator at places like that is also a good avenue. 🙂

  6. I’ve never worked for a non-profit, but idealist.org is a good site that can connect you to jobs, internships, and volunteering positions with non-profits.

    And retail is an awesome possibility. My husband worked for J Crew for two years after college. He never had to work a holiday, but I have no idea how he managed that.

    Good luck dearie!! You sound so much better already – keep at it and you will find something!

  7. Big Brother Big Sister could be a great volunteer option. The big temp agencies on the west side are Emerald and Apple 1. If you see those two names go for it! Also look into AVID tutoring. I am not sure if you are familiar with the program….but it started in Cali 30 years ago and is rapidly going global….let me tell you that is a resume booster.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s