Random fact: I was once courted to run for office. In my small town, in Vermont, a week after I moved to DC. I got a phone call from the committee that supports candidates running for the house. I turned it down, mostly because there was so much change going on in my life at that point that I just…couldn’t go back and I wasn’t ready for a life in public service. Funny, because now a few of my former colleagues have run for office (both successfully and unsuccessfully) and a small part of me, wishes I was in that crowd. Wishes that I had said yes and moved home, and gone for it. Granted my life would be completely different, but the what if’s – especially in this case are intriguing and yet, also… irrelevant. Moving on…
One year ago I moved on from that budding career in politics. I’ll never quite forget the stinging conversation with that temp firm while standing in flippers on a catamaran in the Carribean Sea – the water so crystal blue and the trees in the distance ever so green – Hubs saw the voicemail. I saw the email and called them back.
“I’m so sorry, it’s just not a good fit.”
The contract of a temp-perm job at a lobbying firm in DC had been pulled out from under me. The stability that I had been clinging to the month leading up to our wedding had been yanked from me and we were right back to where we started. Two unemployed newlyweds.
I enjoyed the day but her words “Think about what you really want to do, what’s going to make you happy.” rang in my ears. Clearly politics was not doing it. Something I aspired to for five years. Nights of hard work, lots of papers, and a lot of dry readings with some heartbreaking campaign work thrown in to boot, what I wanted for so long was just not making me happy the way it did when it wasn’t a full time job.
It was on our way back to the main Island, as our trip was ending, that I told hubs I wanted to teach and then said “let’s just move. Let’s move to CT. I’m done with DC.”
I mean, I think I can take a hint that a city isn’t working for me when I lose my job ON my honeymoon (though if there is a place to lose a job, it’s definitely on a catamaran snorkeling trip with a full open bar) so we did. Less than a month later Hubs got a job, and we signed a lease here in Stamford.
The teaching thing didn’t work out – mostly because of financial reasons (we didn’t have the resources for me to take my prereqs to get into grad school) – but you know what? I’m still convinced, more so than ever, that everything, and I do mean EVERYTHING, happens for a reason.
Though I’m working my tail off in three jobs, I’m immensely happy. Loving each job, loving my coworkers, and finally working with managers who are supportive and excited about my development and growth – which hasn’t always been the case in the past. Though this isn’t the way I expected my life to turn out, I’m pleased to say I have no regrets. A friend of mine from school asked if I wanted to start up my political blog on his online magazine again, and I thought about it, and then said that I’d love to blog for him, but I’m not sure politics is my topic anymore. While I do still adore following the rat races, I’m happier following it on my own terms and not for anyone else.
The biggest thing I’ve learned in the past year, and I probably sound like a broken record, everything happens for a reason. I had a hard time telling various people where I was working because I was afraid of being judged but really, I have no reason to be ashamed. And why should I be? I’m embarking on a career that makes me happy, excited to wake up to, and has opened my eyes to a whole different path of life that EXCITES me. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the past five years since graduating it’s that having a job that excites you makes a world of difference.
Are you proud of where you are in life, even if it’s not where you expected to be? Where do you hope to be in 5 years?