Monday, September 19, 2011

with all my fellow unemployed 20-something college graduates in mind...

I've had a hard time organizing my thoughts lately. (Hence the lack of posting.)

I'm frustrated that I still haven't found a job, but I'm even more frustrated by all the chatter about my generation's plight in this economy. Every week it seems there's a new article in the news about how bleak our futures are, what with all the student loans, the lack of jobs and minuscule salaries. Most of them suggest that we buck up, enjoy living back home with our parents and find a hobby to keep us busy during this tough time (I'm not kidding, this was in the New York Times). They suggest getting creative, creating our own jobs or working multiple part time jobs. Like it just... works that way.

Even worse, there's been quite a bit of talk in my own field (a very long email exchange that had me pulling my hair out all weekend) about the massively reduced salaries for new positions, most of which are short term and not very prevalent at all. I don't know how to proceed. If I had known two years ago that it would be like this, would I have followed my passion down this road? I don't know. But here I am and I've got to make it work.

My specialization is film archiving and preservation. I want to work in an archive or library and my long term goal is to restore this beautiful old movie theater in Denton, Texas. I want to get to a place where I can make movies. I've got a plan but where is the money, right? That's what I'm trying to figure out. I wait, I work, I email, I call, I apply, I wait. I often wonder what I'm doing, and the best I can come up with is - what I can. I know I'm not alone in this and I don't mean to complain, but I do have a dream and I'm working hard for it. I spent a lot of years making nothing or next to nothing, working around the clock for people who told me I should be grateful for the experience of working for them... of doing their work. Still, I and others my age are so frequently told that we should be satisfied not making enough to live on or even interning for free because we're getting invaluable experience, getting the "perks" of working at respected institutions, and so on. I'm ready for some recognition. Nothing big, just a title, a desk and a paycheck would be nice. I want to see my friends' hard work pay off. We could have it worse, sure, but why has the door we were always told was just in front of us suddenly shut? Where's the window?

I don't have much else to report (another reason my blog has been quiet). I've started getting up at 5:30am to work out - something I would have thought entirely impossible two weeks ago before I started boot camp. Now I can't imagine starting my day any other way. I'm eating healthy, boosting my metabolism, meditating on my health and movement. I want to dance again so I'm waking my body up.

I'm spending all of my time with my boy. I pack his lunches, send him off and miss him so much while he's at school. We go to the local farmer's market on Saturdays and eat frozen watermelon. He's difficult and brilliant and wonderful.
I miss Taso, so I wait till October when I can be in my best friend's arms again, in the city that I love.

This is what I can do right now.

1 comment:

  1. Great post--and one that I also identify with. I may not be 20-something any more but I'm dealing with the same issues (and the imminent loss of health insurance if I don't find something more permanent soon). Nobody is hiring and the backlog of under and unemployed people is growing. My disgust is growing and my anger at the waste of human potential--and the inane commentary like the NYT article you cited here.