Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Greatest Motivator

As par usual I spent the weekend at my parents home and was fortunate enough in one of my frequent visits to thrift stores to find vintage sewing patterns that have selling potential. Its not a lot but its something to do while waiting for my life to start; selling hand crafted items. I am reminded why I despised the breaks between semesters so much now; my parents (more specifically my mother's ) immovable belief that idle hands are wicked. If you are not working towards a degree then you must be working a job. No matter what. Therefore, also, this weekend I was assigned to manual labor in the backyard. I didn't have a problem for doing it for a day or two; I do happen to owe my mother money but I draw the line at a whole week of moving rocks and digging ditches in the hot sun (living in a desert and all).

Not working, to my family, is testament to being a freeloading, worthless bum (whether or not the country is in economic ruin; I could still be a grocery bagger you know). And although I have to admit I really don't like sitting around all day (hench the crafting/selling idea) I have this thing about doing soul-destroying, thankless, menial labor. And by all accounts I realize the foolish sentiment of that; there are plenty of people who will gladly (and do) take it for a pay check, its how you survive in the world. But me, now, I just... can't. I can't make myself do it; I've had those kinds of jobs when I was younger. I've bagged groceries, I've worked customer service, I've done those minimum wage shit jobs and the reason I went to college was so I never had to do them again.

And, ha ha, here we are right back to where I started; jobless, being pushed by my parents to be a productive member of society. Get a job, any job, I don't care how shitty it is.
What I hate most about unemployment are the 'talks' I get from my parents. The reminder of what a worthless freeloader I'm being.

Being unemployed makes me a second class citizen; depending on my parents for food and shelter also puts me in the position of not being able to say no to anything they ask of me. It messes with my own self-perception and creates this vacuum of unequal power; as long as I need them for survival all my adult independence is put on hold.
Then there's the agoraphobia angle that makes it difficult to work and employers are less than understanding when you have a screaming panic attack and have to go home or take a break or leave the area. Different when you were in school and could just leave the classroom without anyone caring; at a job I think the boss is going to care if you just take off. In the guilty confines of these pages I can also admit that I haven't really been looking. I haven't put in an application anywhere and partially it's not my fault. A sampling of jobs in the area:

- Assistant to psychologist, duties include interviewing inmates at local prison
- Coroner
-Sub sandwich artist (which is a really stupid way of saying minimum wage job where you make food for cranky customers)
- Nurse/Health Practitioner
- Tech jobs (in which I have no Tech skills)
- Warehouse supervisor (see above)
- Library assistant (which I would gleefully take except for it's a six hour drive from where I live)
- Be a model today! Hundreds of people being casted for background movie characters!
- Join the Marines!
- Bar tender

Slim pickings, as it were. I check the wanted pages everyday and it doesn't change; this is exactly what is out there right now. Again, guilty confines, I have to admit the dread feeling of fear in the back of my mind; since my world came crashing down eight years ago I haven't really worked. It scares the crap out of me.
I tried it once, three years ago and it turned out poorly. I lasted three days on the job, got so wound up I couldn't eat or sleep and I just ... ran away from it. The boss was understanding though, she said I could try again later if I wanted. I worked a student part-time job at the local planetarium, doesn't that sound fantastic?

I thought it did too but I had a terrible time with it. My co-workers were all under the age of 22 and, I'm sorry, complete dipshits. I had to endure four hour shifts of console talk, favorite games, Wii sytems, what they were buying with their Christmas bonus and if that wasn't bad enough I got to work with the hick who liked to kill things and tack deer heads on his wall.

There are so many whatifs that go through my head. Whatif I start my job and then I panic (again)? I can't leave, what do I do? Whatif I'm stuck at this job for the rest of my life? Whatif I get sexually harassed, bludgeon the bastard's brain open and have to move to Tibet to avoid the fuzz? Whatif I get treated horribly? How do I even broach the subject of mental illness with my boss? Do I tell them I have panic attacks? Would they work around them? Would they burn my application for even mentioning 'mental illness'? I know there are laws against discrimination but how do you prove they are discriminating against you when they say 'you don't have enough experience' and what they really mean is 'I don't want no mental freak working for me'?

Things to get Done for the Next Week
-Put in a application. Somewhere
-Confront fears of working in some constructive way (volunteer?)
-Prepare for neighbor's wedding on Saturday (meet possible dating material? har har)
-Be more social

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