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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The post-graduation talk

My dear friends,

As most of you know, I recently graduated from college. For those of you who didn't know that, you're welcome.

As is customary whenever someone reaches a crucial turning point in their life, they are bombarded with questions of "What's next?" or "So what do you want to do with your life now that there is no more homework?" or "Will you start getting help for your coffee addiction?" Oh, no one asks that last one...shhhhhhh.

Let me spell this out for you so that there is no confusion: I have no idea what I'm doing.

I got to my final year of college and realized finally what I wanted to do. Except there was a snag; it was too late to change my college direction. So I stuck with what I was doing--also because I really hate being considered a quitter no matter how many times I was tempted--violin performance. Don't get me wrong, I learned a lot and I am very grateful for my time spent in those practice cells, I mean rooms. (Although, to be honest, I did spend a lot of time actually kicking and screaming.)

But now I'm stuck.

More than anything in the world, I want to work with the development of music programs. I want to be an administrator who works front and center with event coordination, fundraising, building relations, all of it. I want to change the lives of kids through music by making such a program happen.

Unfortunately, just having a music degree isn't going to qualify me for such a position. I have to get leadership experience first. And here comes problem number two; most administrative assistant jobs want you to have a specific degree or more than a year of experience.

I've spent hours scrolling through many pages on many websites of job opportunities. I've applied to over a dozen. I've been turned down for 85% of them. The other 15% I've either turned down after the interview or haven't gotten back to me.

I'm discouraged and frustrated.

But that's not it.

I have long said that I want to go back to Africa and live there for a few years and work with forming a music program there. That dream hasn't died.'s fighting with another. Maybe I've been watching too many television shows with successful business women as the protagonist that I've started to want their life, or maybe I am more of a career person than I thought I was. A long time ago, all I wanted was to play violin, be a wife and a mother. But I also imagined I wouldn't have a few awkward years of downtime in between. And as much as I do love music, I need a big fat break!

And so the battle begins.

I want a job in administration with a company that changes lives. I want to be that woman who kicks butt in her high heels when she marches down to executive offices and explains the situation as it is and doesn't leave until everything is resolved as it should be. I want to be that woman who gets to be a voice in a project that brings life to a broken place. I want to get up every morning, dab make-up on my face and dress up in a suit and go work with a bunch of different business people to make something happen.

But I want to live a simple life where I can be able to just go to Africa and do what I love; making a difference in the lives of individuals.

I'm torn folks. I am absolutely torn. I don't know where to find a job, or when to call it quits and start at the bottom and pray for something better to come up. I don't know if I need to look for a job elsewhere because my college roommate could call me up and say, "I've got a job, let's get an apartment together." I don't know when I'm going to get married. I don't want to take up this apartment with my roommate and then have to leave her in a year.

I am so lost and confused and every day I get more nervous and stressed out about jobs and making money.

I'm told, "Go do what you love", but then, "You really need to get a job and get out there". (Guys, I'm kinda getting mixed signals here...)

I knew transitioning to being a working adult would be hard (although I have to admit, I didn't anticipate it being quite this hard). I'm not looking for answers (although if anyone has any good ideas, I am certainly open!). I'm looking for support. I just want prayers for peace and guidance, since we all know that only God knows what I should be doing and how the heck to get there.

Cordially hopeful,