AAAHH!!! Real Life

There’s an eerie feeling that hits you when you’ve been out of school for a while. At first, it’s just kind of a small whisper in the back of your mind. A minor annoyance that can be ignored. Then, slowly, it becomes louder and louder and you’re faced with the realization that, yes, they were ALL correct. Real life is horrifying.

With school, you have a set curriculum of tasks and expectations. If you hit the mark, you’re succeeding, if you don’t, you’re failing. They are external success points that you can check the status of and feel better/worse about where you are.

In real life however, those success points do not exist. You are not graded but you are judged, silently and often. You do not know how well your doing or if you’re even doing the right thing.

Real life is full of doubt, hard-work, and almost no validation. That doesn’t mean it’s bad. It’s just scary. Instead of the limitless possibility you feel the last year of college, there’s more of a dark, unknowing, abyss, kind of feel. One that keeps you up at night and puts you in a dull shock throughout the day. The kind that suddenly overwhelms you with the possibility that you might never find success or personal achievement.

BUT do not fret, it is not all dark and abysmal. It’s been almost two years since I  graduated and almost one year at my current job. Am I deeply unsatisfied and frustrated? Absolutely. Does it feel hopeless? Sometimes. Am I still excited about tomorrow? Yes. Maybe not the immediate tomorrow, but the elusive tomorrow. The one that existed during the worst of my teen years, and the most stressful of my college ones. The tomorrow that says, “If you just keep moving forward, you’ll get to somewhere better.”

real monsters


A girl, a degree, and a muddled job market

Today I’ve had my first interview in three months- minus one nightmare of a job I was offered doing door-to-door sales. Granted this wasn’t really for a “job-job”  but for a staffing agency.

I realized while talking to the nice lady who was going to be the bridge between me and a paycheck, that I missed talking to people face to face. I’ve been job hunting now for so long and yet no one has called me in, even just to speak with me. What happened to that part of finding the right candidates?

It used to be that the resume opened the door and the interview got you the job. Despite what and other expensive resume writing companies want you to believe, you can only “spruce up” a resume so much, the rest is up to fate, luck, or a rich uncle. But what happens today are these huge hiring databases where you resume is uploaded analyzed using an algorithm, and set aside.

Sending out resumes online is like throwing stones down a bottomless well. It seems like you never know if they hit ground or not.

For all I know, the majority of the dozens and dozens of resumes and online applications I have sent out over the last six months haven’t even been seen by human eyes. The fast and easy processing system has cut out he most important part of finding a job, personal interaction.

 I do not have experience in my field, but I have internships, references, and life-experience from my few years off the grid after highschool (off the grid refering to my home town, where I worked and drank more than I should have at 19). The problem is, the databases almost always work against the recent graduate, because those “key” words someone punched into the computer may not come up.

Now the age old complaint from college graduates is, “how am I supposed to get experience if no one will give me the chance?” the answer, give up.

Just kidding, but recently I decided that things were not falling into place the way I had imagined before moving to Washington four months ago. Obviously I was not only being overly optimistic but pretty laissez faire towards the reality of what today’s job market entails. I did everything the career counselors, job search websites, and old-schoolers told me to do, but I wasn’t as worried as I should have been. I thought everything would just work out.

So, here’s where I’m at today: I got a job at a staffing agency where I’m set up to have an interview on Monday for a job that has nothing to do with my degree or even the fact that I possess a diploma at all. Despite this eeking feeling in my gut that I’m giving up on “my dream” (which, let’s be honest, that’s been vague since the beginning), I am actually very excited to be sitting down and having a real interview, where a person is going to come to the decision that they want me on their team, or not, just by a simple conversation.

I don’t know where this job could go, nothing about really sparks my drive, but you never know. I’ve heard enough success stories to know that life surprises people in their path, and can come up when they least expect it.

So here’s to moving forward, to living life, and to literally be working for a paycheck instead of waiting to win the lottery.

40 pounds of pure neurotic love

40 pounds of pure neurotic love

She’s afraid of fart noises…among many other things

Meet Maja, my knee-high Chow and Australian Shepard mix. I got her when I was 16 years old from a small Humane Society shelter in Lead, South Dakota.

She is afraid of most things, and stupidly unafraid when she should be.

List of Maja’s fears:

  • hard wood floors
  • fart noises
  • planes, trains, and buses
  • swimming
  • children
  • other dogs
  • exorcism

It’s Mary if you have a problem




While still fairly new to the post-grad job market, I am very well experienced in working. Since the age of fourteen I’ve been on the payroll of everything from nursing homes to bill  collector.

All I wanted to do was find a job that didn’t make me miserable, something that I could grow within and become a part of, but after high school, nothing I did made me excited about the future. Even the better paying jobs, like credit card collections, while pretty lucrative for someone with no degree, were soul-sucking and I couldn’t stand it for more than a year.

At the age of twenty, I went back to school and settled on journalism/mass communications as my major.  It has now been six months since I graduated, three of those months spent actively looking for work, and I have to admit it’s trickier than I thought it would be.

Do I regret choosing mass communications as my major? Sometimes. I remember my sophomore year there was an article rating the hardest degrees to find jobs that return college investment in, and journalism was second to last. Now, a more recent article from Forbes,  says the job market is improving, but I honestly couldn’t tell from where I’m sitting.

Now, I was totally fine with  not getting paid very well, but what I wasn’t expecting was not even finding a job. It’s a very competitive market and I just don’t have enough material to get my foot in the door. Why would they hire me, when they could get someone who has been in the field for five years? It’s a catch 22. They won’t hire you unless you have experience, but you can’t get experience without someone hiring you.