Well. After approximately 18 months of complaining about my lack of cool job opportunities, I have finally landed my duh-ream job. It's seriously the best thing that has happened to me since finishing college (well, the marriage thing, but I consider this a different category). It's a little familiar to me, as I've volunteered with the program before, but I imagine it will be the most stretching, gratifying, fun job I could have dreamed up. I anticipate small purply pink clouds twinkling above my desk, all day long.
But I'm feeling a bit sheepish, and I feel a little guilty for "getting my way", so to speak, when there are so many people who are getting the pink slip all around me. In fact, when I run into someone who's listened to my plight (WHY GOD, DO ALL THE OTHER ENGLISH MAJORS FIND SUCCESS? WHY NOT ME? WHY???), nobody is as excited to talk about it as I am. Granted, I have felt great support, I don't mean anybody's openly rolling their eyes (though they might when I leave)--I just expected everyone to be as moved as I am.
So I'm realizing... My new job is not as exciting to other people as it is to me. (Probably because there is no elaborate party to follow involving food and happy tears and a white dress. That was way cooler.) Even though I knew this and could occasionally admit it before now, leaving college without having some sort of immediate success threatened my identity in ridiculous ways. I had so much self-doubt--everybody had always showed me The Path I should take. Get good grades? Of course! Behave? I'd love to! Listen to your parents about money and drugs and insurance policies? Obviously! Graduate college with a degree you'll pursue passionately? Check! But, um, what's next?
And it was the first time that the world didn't hand me a shiny blue ribbon. Aaaaaaand it was shocking.
Here on the flip side? It's embarrassing to have been defined by all that. But in the end, could I have known any better? Probably so. Will I spend my entire frickin' life trying to know my true identity, the one that's rooted in the love of Jesus and caring about justice and the gristle of being a survivor? Probably so.