There are moments when you’re searching for employment that are downright depressing.  It’s like looking at the wasteland of all your half-finished schemes and things you could have done differently.  In my case, I feel overqualified for some of the opportunities and the things that I actually want to do I don’t have the experience for.

We all know the importance of hustling, that there will be sacrifices and fatigue so severe you want a short reprieve.  That if you really want to go after your dreams, you sometimes have to start in the mailroom.  I understand all of this but I just think all the years we spent on gaining an education should count for something.  Because I chose the path of a graduate education, that event planning position that I would pay to have now probably is not feasible.  I’ve always wanted to be a party planner, I was just afraid that it was not “legitimate” enough and what a shame.  I should have started in the mailroom in my early twenties right out of undergrad.  Hindsight is 20/20.

What a waste to regret anything though.  You’re allowed one day to mope and that’s it because after that you’re just wallowing.  Growing up means that you look at what you are trained to do and frame it for a position that you would be proud of and love.  I understand the value of going after what you want but some dreams are not meant to come true and that’s alright.  Not all of us can be rock stars.

I just thought that I would have it together by now.  In a year or two I know that things will be clearer and beginnings are what you have to muddle through.  Growing up with Sex and the City I imagined myself a certain way in my mid-thirties.  I still have time, it’s all about being strategic right?  Every girl plays the game of deciding which character they are.  Most people would say that I’m Charlotte.  It’s true, I’m proper, traditional in many ways and cringe at some aspects of subversive culture.  But I always admired Carrie’s vulnerability.  Her flaws made her so much more relatable.  She was not always the greatest friend, partner or even person but you still loved her.  I’d say most of us have aspects of all four characters: Miranda’s drive, Samantha’s bravery, Carrie’s confidence and Charlotte’s heart.  I know that the show Girls is written with a similar goal to empower women, but perhaps with more of an edge.  Goodness gracious Ms. Dunham you are smart.  Both are valuable, but Carrie and co. are so much more aspirational.  I love you Lena but I would choose their careers and wardrobes over that version of reality any day.  Life’s a mess but I don’t really need to see it in technicolour all the time. tumblr_nbg3wjo0Zr1taiftro1_500


2 thoughts on “Misfit

  1. Lovely post, Ei Phyu. I had similar thoughts about the gap between my experience and my desires when I left Calgary. Going from grad school to consulting with my passion lying in public engagement I spent my unemployed time volunteering like a fiend. I ended up spending my time at 3 organizations, one of which asked me to write a grant that happened to include money for salary for someone like me. And three years later, I’m here full time and managing a team of 3 people, creating programs that I’m passionate about and feeling in a position to make some change.

    I’ve also just hired a new team member. What I learned from that process was that I weighted volunteer experience quite heavily and sometimes as more valuable than paid experience if it was more relevant to the job.

    I think your dreams can come true, you just might not get paid for them right away.

    • Thanks so much Dana and I totally agree that volunteering is great way to get to know the industry, make connections and gain some much needed experience. I just think it’s always healthy to have a more balanced and flexible notion of dreams but you’re right in that it’s never too late.

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