There’s been a lot going on. The last few years – well, decade really – have been a struggle, to say the least. I’ll spare you the details, but the tl:dr version is that I’ve only ever had a couple of jobs that I truly enjoyed. Lifeguarding was fun because all my friends were there and I could hop in the hot tub any time I wanted. The other job I loved was at a vet walking dogs at the butt-crack of dawn, bathing the ones going home that day, feeding, and cleaning the kennels. It sounds boring and disgusting (and sometimes it really was), but what I loved about it was that I was in charge of when I came in, I could do things my own way at my own pace, and I was done before most of my college classmates were even awake. As long as I had the dogs bathed that were going home that day before the clinic opened, the rest of it was pretty much up to me. It turns out that that’s how I work best.
I was raised to believe that I could make more money by working harder, that music in itself wasn’t a “real job,” and that I would always need a stable job I could depend on. Womp womp… I can’t depend on any job. I’ve been laid off and non-renewed more times than I want to count, and every time it plunged me and my family back below the poverty level. The hardest jobs I’ve had are the ones that paid the worst and there’s no guarantee that I’d still have that job 6 months down the road. I’ve never been fired for doing anything wrong, but it’s a right-to-work state so they don’t have to tell me squat.
The last 8 years or so I’ve been struggling with depression. I probably had something going on before then, but that’s when it became so bad that I couldn’t make a single decision. Like, I knew I was hungry, but I couldn’t decide what to make myself so it was easier to just go hungry. Medication helps take the edge off so I’m able to function like a human, but there’s something about working a regular job that just grates on my soul. I always get antsy for change after about 18 months in a job, wanting a new challenge or change of scenery or to just be done with the people. Sometimes I’ll stick it out longer than that, but often that decision is made for me.
This time, I stuck it out with teaching elementary music for 3 years in my hometown. There were times that it was great, fun, rewarding, and worth it. Then, there were times when it was painful, infuriating, and exhausting. This 3rd year, the worth it parts were getting fewer and farther between and my boss decided to micromanage me more and more, to the point that I’m coming home and sleeping or crying after school every day. That’s no way to live, but I tried to stick it out for the sake of a “steady job.” A job that could decide not to offer me a contract for next year, for no reason at all.
Nothing is guaranteed. It’s all just an illusion of safety.
I’ve been editing podcasts for 3 1/2 years now (wow, really??) and it’s only getting better. I really love editing podcasts. It’s really fascinating listen to these incredible women tell their stories and teach their lessons. I’m constantly learning something new, something I want to try like when I overhaul my website, or something about myself. It’s basically free coaching, having all their wisdom in my ear every week. The show that’s been hitting me particularly hard lately, in a good way, is It’s Still Happening with Ash Johns. Ash does a lot of work with healing across generations, farther back than your grandma, and bringing the ancient wisdom into the present.
Coincidentally (maybe??), the time of my decision of whether or not to sign my teaching contract for next year fell in the time between 2 eclipses – a time known as the Inter-Eclipse Gateway. I’m not particularly into the woo-woo, but I’ve worked in customer service and schools enough to be able to tell when the moon is new or full just by the behavior of the people I see at work. Add an eclipse or 2 in there and YIKES. I’ve definitely been feeling a very strong pull to make some huge changes in this time and even the voice in my head – the one that tries to keep me safe by keeping me in the same place because it’s familiar – isn’t trying very hard anymore. Talking to my parents about it was easier than I expected too, because of how miserable I am in my current work situation.
It’s time for a change – a big one – and I’m moving forward with taking my podcast business, in conjunction with Angie at Podcast Launch Bestie, full time. I’m toying with the idea of looking into some local tech jobs also. The path I’ve been walking has been safe, but it’s been small, painful, and non-lucrative. I’m ready to expand my possibilities, take a big leap, and trust that it’s the right decision for me.
It’s been a long time since something felt this right.
Here’s the first episode where Ash talks about the Eclipse gate and what it means for all of us. Maybe it’ll shake something loose in you too.