"Ordinary life does not interest me. I seek only the high moments. I am in accord with the surrealists, searching for the marvelous." ~Anais Nin

28 November 2016


I'm wondering whether or not to apply for a job, and I just don't know.  I've got about a week and a half before it closes, so I have to decide quick.

The Pros:
It's in my field.  It's full time.  It's in the same town as my best friend.

The Cons:
Crappy pay.  It's not a professional position.  Semi-crappy hours.  The town is about  3-4 hours away from my family and support system in a town where I only know 3 people (my best friend, her husband, and their kid).  A quick google search of rents in the area revealed that I'd be paying about as much as I would here if I had my own place, and I wouldn't even try to find a place of my own for that pay here—it being about half or more of my monthly take-home.

If it paid better I would jump at it.
If it were in my town I would jump at it.

However, it's pretty damn far away from my current support system.  I'd have to find a place to live, pay rent, utilities, continue to pay for my car (loan payment, gas, upkeep, etc), buy food, and pay for other various expenses (my credit card, clothes, my phone, internet, etc).  A lot of that is stuff I don't have to worry about now.  Add to that, the small raise in my pay may end up requiring me to pay more towards my student loans, and I don't know that I'd actually be able to live.  

On the other hand, it's in the town where my best friend lives and we haven't lived in the same town in years.  

This is so frustrating because the job could be perfect.  It's not too far away from my family.  It's in my field.  It's full time.  With benefits!  But it's not enough.  I need more money, and I don't want to have to work two jobs to survive.  

But I'd be near my best friend and I miss her so much.

I don't think I'll apply.  In the process of writing this I talked myself out of it.  If it paid more—but it doesn't.  I'll just have to keep looking.


24 November 2016

Walking the knife's edge

Baxter and Knife Edge by Greg Neault [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons
I have a real problem with discontent in my life right now.  Of course, if you've known me or have been reading this blog for any length of time then you know this already.  I struggle.  It's tough, and I hate it.  I don't like being this way–brittle, angry.  It's not a good way to live.  I wouldn't recommend it.

I'm so angry all the time.  It really sucks.  I'm angry that I can't find a job.  I'm angry that I'm living with my parents.  I'm angry that I'm always, always broke.  I'm angry that I spent all this money on an education that I'm not using.  I'm angry because I figured out that if I hadn't gone ahead and gotten my Master's my student loans would be halfway paid off by now.  I'm angry that I'm considering taking my Master's off my resume–I mean, what's the point?  I'm angry because I feel like I paid my dues: I worked low-paying, terrible-hours retail positions for almost almost two decades, and it was okay because it was temporary—until I finished my degrees.  Now I can't find anything but low-paying, terrible-hours retail positions, and I don't want that to be my life.  I want to actually be able to do things.  I want to have weekends and evenings off.  I want to have money to travel, or at least pay off my bills.  I want to be able to hang out with my friends, meet new people, date.  I live in an area where there's no bus service, and I can't afford the gas to go anywhere but work and home.  My life was supposed to be better now, but at 35 I make half of what I did at 17.  Why?  Because I can't find anything but part time work, and it makes me so angry.

And that, of course, affects my entire life, from how I perform at work to how I interact with my family.  I walk this knife's edge, balanced precariously between freaking out and going catatonic.  I don't like it.  There's this repeating cycle of anger, explosion and/or shut-down, guilt, sadness, anger, and so on.

And I just need to let it all go.


I know the world is different than it was in my parents' and grandparents' times.  The job market is much more unstable, middle class jobs are disappearing–or even nonexistent in many places, housing prices are–I think–artificially and disastrously high.  If I someday have children, I will not be able to give them what my parents gave me, not unless I'm very, very lucky.  And my children will have a worse time of it.  Our way of life is crumbling, and there's really no stopping it.  Ecological limits restrict our future growth, and while I believe that's not necessarily a bad thing, it will hurt.  There may have been a way to mitigate most of the damage, but we passed that point long ago.  Now it will just hurt more and sooner.

Still, that's the big picture.  That affects me, it affects us all, but it's my little picture that holds my attention.  I should be doing better than I am.  I know this.  But things just keep getting worse.  Lately I've begun to despair that anything positive will happen to me.  This helpless, hopeless feeling comes and I wonder, "How much longer can I live like this?"  Like, what if nothing changes and I'm suddenly 40 and living the same life?  Or 50?  Can I stand it?  Not having any life?  Not having a way to support myself?  What will I do then?

I don't like the answer.

So, I've got to push myself towards some form of positive change.  I cannot continue down this path.  I cannot.  But herein lies my problem: I have no idea where to start with that.  For a long time I thought if I could only land a full time job, but I don't know that I will . . . At least not soon enough to matter.  So what can I do?  How can I change my life and maybe make a little more money?  How do I keep myself from drowning?

I know I'm overlooking a lot.  I've been so focused on trying to find work, it's taken all of my attention.  How do I rediscover my bit of calm, my flexibility?  How do I learn to be–if not happy, then–content?  Where can I find hope?

I feel like it's something small, something I'm overlooking–that first step, I mean.  Because it is going to be steps–a great many of them–before I find stable footing.  What can I do?  It's like I'm stuck, dithering, at a crossroads, and there are a million directions in which I can travel, but I'm so afraid of choosing wrong that I don't know quite where to place my feet.  But I have to move, because I don't want to be this person anymore.  I don't want to be sad and angry and afraid.  I don't want to feel brittle and bitter.  I want to move.  I want to dance.  I want to live.

So I guess I've got to get going, huh?  Cast my die and take a chance.  Maybe I'll find myself becoming the person I want to be in the process.

10 November 2016

I really need to do this:

This post is to remind me of something to do that will both benefit the library and look good on a resume for a future (maybe local) full time library job.

I want to put together a list, a pathfinder, or even a website like my Gothic literature website compiling every author I can find who has a connection to my area.  I don't know how far out I want to go with this, whether, for instance, I want just authors from the Kansas City metropolitan area or all authors from Kansas and Missouri.  Nor do I know whether I want to list authors who were born here (or around here) but were raised (and/or lived) somewhere else, or vice versa.  I'm leaning towards an all-encompassing list incorporating Kansas and Missouri in their entirety.

Things to include:

  • biography
  • bibliography
  • links to author site
  • links to free reads (if any available)
  • links to library systems in the states? maybe
  • links to booksellers

Any other ideas out there?

02 November 2016

Poetry Wednesday #58

My niece's first birthday last week.  We had a terrible time finding a card that wasn't hideous, so I made my own using some faery notecards I bought years ago and writing a message inside.  This is the little poem I wrote a a message.  It's a little Hallmark-y, but, whatever.

For my most magnificent and wonderful niece, M— S—, on the occasion of her first birthday:

It's been fun to watch you grow
And learn the things you didn't know.
Of course, it will be more fun still—
O! Just the thought gives me a thrill—
To watch as you grow bigger yet,
And cast a wider knowledge net.
It's so much fun because it's you,
And you bring fun to all you do!