So I'm not technically unemployed, but I think it makes for a good blog title! I don't have what I would consider a "big girl job," because it's not full time and not in Columbus, which is where I want to move at the end of the summer.
I am currently just a dog sitter/house sitter, but I just signed the paperwork to be hired on at East End Community Services as a Youth Center Staff Mentor. This job is basically what I've been doing since January except that I'll get paid for it! This past year I participated in a Semester of Service through school and I was placed with East End. Through the SoS program I was a mentor and tutor in an urban, public PK-8 school. I got to hang out with who would be considered the "bad" kids, who got sent from class to the In-School Restoration Room, which is a kind of like in-school detention or suspension, but with a restorative justice aspect. It's one of the first schools in the area to have a program like that where the kids are held accountable so that they have to apologize and rebuild the relationships that were injured during their acting out. Then after school I mentored/hung out with a group of junior high kids, and we learned about making healthy decisions, managing a budget, and participating in service to the community. Finally, in the evening we would walk down to the Youth Center, where a free meal was served to kids from 4th-12th grade, who then participated in academic and activity time with several other volunteers and employees of the center. We're a safe and positive environment for kids who don't always have that to go home to and I've loved getting to know all of the amazing kids that I've come in contact with. This summer at this job I get to hang out with all of the same kids from 3-8 everyday at the youth center, where we will learn about a variety of different subjects, go on field trips, and play all day!
I can't really explain how much the Semester of Service experience has meant to me, except to say that's it's pointed me in a direction that could lead to a future career for me. I've never had any kind of career aspirations (besides when I wanted to be a chef for a few years in junior high), but helping and hanging out with kids is something for which I've really discovered a deeper passion. This job is a sigh of relief for this summer - I don't have to meet all new people just yet, I can save money for my eventual move, and I can take more time to search for a job that is going to be right for me. I applied for a job a few months ago that I never heard back about, but in that waiting period I realized that I didn't really want to move away at the beginning of the summer, and that it wouldn't have been the right job for me. It felt more like my decision, than the decision of someone who didn't want to hire me, and I think that's how I need to look at everything that's going to be happening to me in the next couple of months. I am capable of making good decisions and I need to recognize that in myself. Those kids who I didn't think I had anything in common with back in January make my life more meaningful everyday, and I learn something about them and their world every time I talk with them. I am so blessed to get to have a few more months with them and I cannot imagine having to say goodbye at the end to all of them. I am SO relieved to have some income too. How lucky am I to get paid to do something that I love so much!? That's what I think a career should be everyday and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that something like that comes along for me.