It’s been a long time, we shouldn’t have left you…

I wish I could say that I haven’t been writing because my anxiety and depression and weight loss woes have abated. Quite the opposite. I’m still super stressed (but at least I’m on meds now) and I’m still weigh myself several times a day. On the bright side, I’ve lost 43 pounds at this point, and there are brief moments when I feel very proud of that. The rest of the time, I remember that I lost 30 pounds in the first three months, so I should technically have lost 60 pounds by now. See how I did that? I turned an impressive accomplishment into a dire failure.

Weight isn’t my main issue right now, though. I’ve been taking web development classes for the last couple of years and I finished certificate in front-end web development in May. For a while, I couldn’t motivate myself to look for jobs. I didn’t feel qualified enough to do anything and I kind of enjoy having the freedom to take three-hour long Pokémon Go walks every day. But that little voice in my head that never lets me feel good about myself for longer than a few minutes at a time, kept popping up to remind me that I wasn’t contributing to society and that I should be ashamed to be so lazy. So, last week, I finally started looking. To my surprise, I found a couple that I might actually be able to do, so I applied. Big mistake. Now I feel bad about not having a job AND I feel bad about being rejected from the jobs I did apply for.

It’s so crazy. I’m college-educated, I’m pretty smart, I have a strong office-based work history, I just took all these damn web development classes. Clearly, I can handle an entry-level website management job, but those all require multiple years of experience. I still don’t understand that logic. I know I’m lucky. I grew up in a household where we would have ended up on the streets if my mom ever lost her job. Fortunately, that’s not going to happen to me. There are some days when I’ve exercised a bunch and I feel so accomplished, so at peace. Why can’t I just accept that? Why can’t I just be content with what I have? If I keep losing weight, I’ll at least be able to show that I did something with my time, that I didn’t just sleep and eat all day, that I wasn’t completely lazy. But the clock is ticking down to my 10-year-college reunion next year and I do not relish explaining to all the doctors and lawyers and high-powered business people that I don’t have a job. I don’t really want to tell a bunch of highly-educated, highly-successful people that I had a career and I left because I wasn’t happy so now I’m just…nothing. And even if I do get a job, 31 feels way too old to be entry-level. No matter what happens in the next year, I won’t be able to give my former classmates (or myself) a good answer. The question is usually “What do you do?” but what they really mean is “What makes you worthwhile? What are you contributing to society? What makes you good enough?”

…I don’t know.

2 thoughts on “It’s been a long time, we shouldn’t have left you…”

  1. But do you have a Mewtwo in Pokemon Go? Because that is totally a brag worthy accomplishment. 🙂 I can’t physically manage three hour walks, but during a really lousy year having time to earn my research stamps has been oddly validating 🙂 The inner critic sucks, but I’m firmly of the opinion that America’s need to make human beings prove they are “worth something” has caused far more harm to far more innocents in our history than it ever helped anyone. It’s perfectly natural to get down on yourself when you feel stuck career-wise, but your worth isn’t based on some arbitrary economic productivity metric.

    Like

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