I have been waiting to write this post for a little over a week now, and I keep getting stuck. People keep telling me, “You did it!,” when they find out that I got a JOB. A real, big girl job in a city I love doing something I’m interested in. I have a field, and I nailed a GREAT FREAKING JOB in that field. It’s the Cinderella Story of job searching.
Still, something about the congratulatory praise seems off. I mean, sure. I did do it, in some sense. I was the one who nailed her interview, the one who worked her ass off to round out her resume. Hell, I cleaned toilets for a few months just to have a few dollars in my bank account. But it wasn’t JUST me. There were so many people that went into the process of me signing that offer letter, and, at the risk of sounding like I’m accepting an Oscar, I want to thank them.
To Sean: (Okay, this is totally going to sound like an Oscar speech. Stay with me.) You were what held me up when I had my bad days and you were usually the reason I had my good days. Thank you for taking my midnight calls to hear, “I’m awesome, right? I can do this, can’t I?” over and over again. My endless worrying, the tears, the stress – you stayed through it all. Didn’t even blink an eye. I cannot wait until we’re together in DC. Thank your family for me, too, who often stayed up late on nights up north to teach me about the process of development or provided encouragement in the form of texts, emails and cookbooks.
Thank you to my family, who let me leech off of them for a year while I first tried my hand at law school, and then at finding a career. I seriously floundered there for a while, and would have no doubt been either living in squalor or completely homeless had you not been willing to take me back after graduation. Also, thank you for letting me paint over that hideous pink color I decided I wanted in my room in high school. Sorry about the ceiling.
Sarah Yolleck, you little bendy beam of constant support. You grew my network tenfold (after introducing me to every single one of your friends and asking them if they knew of a job for me) and then went and referred me for a few yourself. Every girl needs a friend like you. Also, expect me in NYC very, very soon.
Thank you, also, to the many people who listened to me bitch and worry about not having a real career. Thank you to the ones who referred me to their companies, friends and family members (Kirsten, you are the reason I have this job. Thank you for giving me that opportunity.), the ones who took my phone calls and listened patiently while I asked about their careers and aspirations, and the ones who offered their advice when I had nothing to return. Thank you to 834 Design & Marketing for comparing me to “that guy on OKCupid who seems perfect, so you know he has to have a flaw if he’s still single” and then teaching me about PR and marketing and giving me the tools I needed to go out and succeed post-internship.
And thanks for all of you, readers, who came to this space despite my constant whining about wanting a path because I know that I can seem self-righteous (I have a blog, so…kind of comes with the territory) and many other things at times, but receiving feedback and stories of similarity between recent grads in my position was enlightening and gave me a sense of community I hadn’t felt since leaving college. This was the perfect outlet for my frustrations, and it seems that I wasn’t alone in experiencing them. If you’re currently in the thick of a similar search, I guess that I get to be the example now that people used to give me: If you work hard, if you talk to people, if you put in the time and the effort and you have the support of your people backing you up, you will be able to do it, too. I highly recommend asking your entire network – including Facebook (which is how I came across this position) – for help. And I’d love to talk to you about my experience! Reach out and we’ll chat.
I worked harder in these last eight months than I ever did in college or in high school. I dealt with more feelings of self-doubt and anxiety than I ever thought I would have to contend with. And still, I talked to more people, made more connections and learned about humanity — business humanity, at that — than I didn’t think was possible. I forged deeper relationships, was forced to grow personally and take on some very heavy insights about my life choices, and I only collapsed, like, a few times. And then I (with the help of my people) picked myself up and kept on going.
So, sure. I did it. But you all did it with me. Now who wants some champagne?!