I got the job!
I had an interview last week. Remember that? Well, the HR manager called this morning to tell me that they are extremely (her emphasis) interested in me and think I'm a perfect fit for the position. In fact, they'd already started putting my offer letter together last week. But then a current employee came back from vacation and expressed interest in the position, and there was really no reason not to give it to her. However, they're expecting to be crazy busy this year and think they'll need to hire another project manager in a couple of months. She wants to keep in contact so that they can hire me when they're ready. She even asked that I let her know if I start getting other offers so that they have the opportunity to try to speed things along on their end.
So, I've got the job... probably... in a few months.
While I'm flattered, I'm also feeling a little relieved. And a little guilty for feeling relieved. The relief comes from not yet being ready to return to work. I want more time with my boys. It also comes from not wanting to return to an unfulfilling career, which I wrote about here. And the guilt comes from being picky at a time when so many people are desperate for work. The guilt also comes from believing that there is something better for me. Not necessarily better that this particular job (it seems like a very good job, actually), but better than this life. This workin' for the man life. Which is how we all feel, I know. Hence the guilt. What makes me think I'm so special? What makes me think I'm entitled to a fulfilling career? What makes me think I'm entitled to decide that my career is staying at home with the kids, if that's what I want?
Well. Actually. A lot of you do that last one. And there was a time when I didn't understand why you would want to. But now I do. The last job I really enjoyed was when I was 17 and managed the office of a ballet studio. I did all the office stuff, but I also got to help little girls put their hair in tiny little buns and sew their elastics back onto their slippers when they snapped in the middle of class. And sometimes I even got to teach when the owner was too drunk to do it himself. Yay for drunk owners! That work was not hollow, but every other job I've held has been. Sure, some of those other jobs were challenging and interesting and I may have even enjoyed them for a time, but all were ultimately hollow. At the end of my day I could look at my work and know that I'd helped rich people get richer. Hollow. Hollow. Hollow. But you know what isn't hollow? Taking care of my kids, that's what. It's no walk in the park. In fact, quite often it's a total pain in the ass. It elicits the same - usually more - curses and heavy sighs and need for caffeine as any job. But at the end of the day I can look at my work and know without a doubt that it served a worthy purpose; that it was meaningful; that it was. not. hollow. So I get you now, stay-at-home-moms. I don't get your desire to drive minivans regardless of how few children you have, but I do get your desire to stay home.
Anyway. All this to say what?
I kind of, sort of, might have a job eventually. And while the job isn't really what I want to be doing, the people I'd be working with seem intelligent and fun. The work environment might make up for the work itself. And that, before I lost my job, was the best I thought I could hope for. So this is a viable option, assuming the compensation is fair and the offer actually materializes.
But I intend to spend the next few weeks, months, whatever, figuring out something else. Something better. Maybe I don't figure it out. Maybe I take the first job that's offered to me (because I'll continue sending out resumes too) in the name of relative financial security. But maybe I figure out a way to stay home with my boys. Maybe I figure out a way to work from home, earning a little extra cash and keeping my brain active. Maybe that work from home plants a seed that someday grows into a full-time NOT HOLLOW career.
Revisiting the Bad Mother Manifesto
1 hour ago