I said goodnight to Tuesday out on the porch. As I rubbed Belle's belly, the sun slipped below the horizon, leaving a smudge of orange above the trees.
I'm almost ashamed to tell you I wasn't sad to see it go. Despite my vow to not wish time away, to be grateful for every minute, blah, blah, blah...I've struggled to hang on to my smile today. First thing this morning I got an email letting me know the job I'd been crossing my fingers AND toes for since March wasn't available after all.
It was a writing job. One where I could finally put all of my experience at the chemical plant to good use, doing what I love, and get paid to visit my parents in Houston for a week or more each month, instead of having to take off work to go. Paid well enough to get us out of debt, I should add.
A friend tried to help me out, but she just couldn't get that door open. This is where a degree in English or Journalism would have come in real handy. Years and years and years of creative writing and newspaper reporting just didn't cut it.
I guess the big lesson is, if I had stuck with Chemical Engineering, if I hadn't dropped out, I wouldn't be writing this right now.
Of course, if I hadn't been a total stay-at-home mom, devoted to volunteering and only working part-time jobs for the past twenty years, I wouldn't be writing this, either.
Although, honestly, I don't really regret those decisions or feel they were wrong.
My email inbox tried to cheer me up. These were the two quotes-of-the-day I received:
Trust the past to the mercy of God, the present to his love, and the future to his providence.
~ St. Augustine
Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18
Another coincidence was a book Tom brought back to me from his mom: Basket of Blessings, 31 Days to a More Grateful Heart, by Karen O'Connor. I glanced through it this morning. It reminded me of my collection of sweet!s, although she digs a little deeper about what we can be grateful for.
This one made me really stop and think:
We can be grateful for pain: the death of a loved one, divorce, or illness...each a gift in its own way if we take time to see it.
I was still pondering that when I received the email, which for me heralded the death of a dream, of a glimmer of hope and help for my family, and smashed my self-confidence.
So I've spent the day praying for a grateful heart, thinking of those poor people in Oklahoma who have been hit so hard just recently and reminding myself of all the blessings in my life.
For starters, I was able to walk my puppies just as the sun rose on a clear summer sky, to run with healthy legs and heart and lungs on my treadmill, to shower with hot water, to drive in my car to a job in a beautiful location where I work with nice people and get to meet others.
But it's not a career. It's part-time. It's fun in a way, but I've learned all there is to learn. It's not going to evolve into something else. And it's definitely not enough money.
So I'll keep searching, keep trying to adapt my eclectic work and volunteer experience into the requirements and explain why I don't need a college degree to do the job, of wondering if I'm perceived as too old to learn anything or start a career.
But not tonight. To paraphrase Sister Golden Hair..."...I tried to make it Tuesday, but I got so damn depressed, that I set my sights on Wednesday and I got myself undressed."
Goodnight, Tuesday. No hard feelings?