Tag Archives: career

Oh, It’ll Take A Little Time

So, it’s Thursday evening and I’m just now blogging. Yeah, there’s a good reason for that—it was my first day at work.

The good news is that it was fun, the day went by quickly, and I’m still employed. The bad news is that I’m completely overwhelmed, I have a lot to learn, and dinner seems to be up in the air for tonight. Sorry, family.

It has been twenty years since I last worked outside of my house. Never once during that twenty years did I feel as though I was falling behind, until today. Funny thing—I was always one of those women who laughed as I would hear or read tales of women who would return back to work after being at home for many years. I mean, how much can you possibly forget? It reminded me of the kind of thing TV sitcoms would over-dramatically exploit for an episode.

I stand corrected.

I haven’t spent the past twenty years in a hole. I may not have earned a steady salary, but I definitely worked. I have two college degrees along with a professional certificate. I’ve been an Area Coordinator for an international organization. I planned two silent auctions for a non-profit group. I’ve been a Girl Scout Troop Leader (don’t laugh – by far the hardest job I’ve had!), and then there’s this blog and website. I thought I’d kept up a decent pace over the years.

Wrong.

When I last earned a salary, I had to use a time-card to keep track of my hours. In fact, I’ve always had one because I’ve never had a salaried position, but the point is—I’ve always written my hours out by hand. Even as an office manager in staffing, everything I did was written by hand. The last time I was employed, one would be lucky if their company had a mainframe (now THERE’S an old word for you) to use. In my case, it would have been used for employment applications, and then maybe I could search for certain skills. It was basic, and only one of the companies I worked at had one. We all had phones at our desk, but very few of us had computers, and by computers I mean those old CRT’s that took up half of the workspace on a desk! Today, I was on the phone for half the day trying to get my stupid sign-in to work in order to clock in and out, and at some point while the IT guy and I wrestled with the time and labor functions, I realized just how much I’d missed and how far behind I’d really been left.

Sure, I’m thankful I’ve been at home with my kids. I have thoroughly appreciated and enjoyed that time. I’m very defensive about being a stay-at-home mom for a variety of reasons, but I’m proud that I made the right choice for my family. I have family members that have spent the past twenty years trying to put me in a box, assuming that since I didn’t take a job I must be stupid, and let me tell you my friends, that has been a very bitter and painful pill to swallow. I’ve spent a lot of time fighting back tears at family gatherings, I’ll say that much. And even so, I will go to my grave saying that staying home was the right thing to do. On the other hand, my gosh—when I last worked we didn’t even have laptops. Thinking about everything that has changed since I last set my alarm to get up and get ready for work psyched me out a bit today, I’ll admit. There were a few technical challenges as well, one of which being that I’m a diehard Mac-user and I had to work using my boss’s Windows computer. I managed, sort of.

As I sat with my boss’s cell phone on speaker this afternoon, waiting for Mr. IT Man to make it possible for me to account for my time in the coming weeks, I realized that as overwhelming as it might be—I’ll figure this out. I’ll keep trying things until something clicks, and eventually this new job will feel like an old one. And really, isn’t that similar to what Duran Duran has gone through during their career?

Sure, they’ve continued to record through the decades, but they constantly adapted with each new album, and not just through music. Every time they went back into the studio, the circumstances changed. They’ve lost members. Gained members. The world has evolved, and the industry has been turned on its head. Even if they were on solid ground with their music, everything else around them continued to turn. Talk about being on a roundabout! When I think about everything that has changed since 1981, especially considering my experience today, my head spins.

No, I haven’t always embraced everything the band has done. There’ve been times when I’ve wondered why they didn’t zig when they zagged. Fans question nearly every single thing they do, second and third guessing anything from the release date of a video to their setlist. I’ve been a party to plenty of that, myself, right here on this blog. Wonder we haven’t driven them crazy….

The bottom line, at least for me, is that Duran Duran keeps going. They are cruising through their fourth decade, and they’re not letting little things like time or progress stop them.

Neither will I. Just as soon as I work up the energy to get off of this couch.

 

-R

 

On a Wandering River

Amanda and I have been trading emails over the past few days, and I realized yesterday that in a week, this little blog will be six years old. Another “birthday”, so to speak, and change is ahead.

Oddly, it is slowly getting to the point where I can’t remember life before Daily Duranie. I’m not entirely sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, but it certainly does mean it has become a fixture in my life. Each weekday I wake up, come downstairs, feed the cats and dog, start the coffee and sit down to check in with the world and blog. It is a habit, and something I’ve gotten used to doing now, six years in.  In a lot of ways, blogging has become a sort of journal for me. I try to keep my posts loosely centered around fandom, but as my sister told me over the summer—she also reads to find out what’s going on here with me and the kids. I value my time writing here, and I enjoy the habit!

(We’re fine! They started school yesterday and so far, Gavin is realizing that his senior year is sort of the payoff for buckling down the first three years! More on that another time…)

As I mentioned yesterday though, this year is bringing change to my household. I have spent the last twenty years, nearly to the day, at home with my kids. Prior to that, I worked as a staffing manager for a temporary service.  For me, it was a “job”, not really a career, and it wasn’t something I wanted to do for the next thirty or forty years. My husband’s career, on the other hand, required a lot of travel and late nights anyway, and I recognized one of us needed to be at home.  In the years since, I won’t lie—I’ve wondered what it was like to have a career. I envied Walt, and I still envy a lot of you. Creating this blog has been the closest thing to a career I’ve ever had.  I care a lot about what happens here, and while I haven’t been wise enough to really make it into something that could support either Amanda or I financially, I’ve treated it with that kind of seriousness.  I don’t want to see what we’ve done so far, die. That said, it is time for me to earn a real salary.

So today, I am going to my first job interview in about twenty-two years.  The job isn’t full-time, it’s merely the “office lady” job at my kids’ school.  As most know, my kids are in an independent studies program (more independent for Gavin than my youngest of course!), but the charter school also operates a resource center where the kids go for class. So, should I get the position, I’ll be working in the office. It’s a solo-person job, so I’ll do everything from handling band-aids to ordering supplies and working with the parent committee.  My theory is that while it would be good to help out with the cost associated with sending our kids to college, and possibly have money for a show or two from time to time – I didn’t want to work full-time unless it was at writing.  (working on that goal!)

This will change blogging for me a bit, since I really don’t know how or when I’ll blog on Tuesdays and Thursdays. For those of you in the UK and elsewhere in the world, it is likely that you won’t see blogs on those two days and instead get two on Wednesday and Friday, depending upon timing. I’m just not sure.  The important thing is that I don’t plan to quit.

I have a lot of emotion about this. I don’t do well with change, I guess.  In some ways, I feel like I failed here with Daily Duranie.  I can’t really explain that feeling without going into  lot of detail that I don’t have time to do right now (and while I’m pretty open on here, there are some things about myself I just don’t want to talk about publicly).  All I can say is that I guess I just believed that the more I blogged and the more I wrote, that somehow, someway—something would come out of it and fall into my lap. You see, I really do want a career of my own.  I have friends who remind me that being a mom is a huge career, and while I suppose in some way that’s right—I never intended to be a stay-at-home mom for my entire life. My youngest still needs me though, so I’m glad that this position is something that works, and she is really excited by the prospects of having Mom right at school!

I do believe that the universe has a way of sending signs, and I just keep waiting in hopes that eventually, I’ll know what I should be doing. For all I know, this IS the sign. Oddly enough, as I checked the directions to where I’m going today, it turns out that the main office is about a mile from where my parents lived before my dad passed away.  I have no doubt that if my sister is reading, she’ll smile at that. I did.

So, as I close this and get ready to go, please send some positive thoughts my way. I’m finding that it isn’t even so much as I need this job as it is that I need a change of direction and some new opportunity.  And, I promise the blog will still be here!  🙂

-R