Go Big or Go Home

Literally. If I don’t find a job to support myself, I will be moving back to Gainesville in October. That’s my deadline. We leave Okinawa then and I need a j-o-b. There is no way I can live with my parents. My dad would be fine, but my mom drives me crazy. I don’t even think it’s intentional, but she just pushes all the right buttons. Plus, I don’t want to be the mid-thirties loser that has to go back to her parents’ when her life falls apart.

My sister has offered me the guest room and I know she is sincere in her offer, but with her family and job she always has a lot going on. Knowing that it could be for longer than a typical vacation makes me feel intrusive.

My other offer comes from my BFF, DTMB. She is the best and it would be awesome to stay there, but again she’s got a husband, 2 dogs, chickens, a full-time job, etc. I don’t want to be the sad, soon-to-be-divorced friend that comes to crash with my cuddle-challenged pup.

All of this leads to the most stressful part of the impending divorce, Job Hunt 2011! Living overseas for the last 6+ years I’ve been sheltered. I’ve heard about the economic difficulties going on in the states, but I really had no idea how many people would be applying for one position. I am in competition with hundreds of applicants. I never knew a job search could be so hard.

I’m casting a wide net and applying for jobs I know I’m qualified for and for jobs that I’m mostly qualified for, but that get me really excited. I’ve applied to be a  biological technician, naturalist, environmental educator, program coordinator for Girls on the Run, sports director, and volunteer coordinator and my job search has covered 12 states ranging from Pennsylvania to California. I’m going for jobs I actually want and not just jobs I think can pay the bills. I’m trying to be brave in my search and find something I can be passionate about, but the reality of needing to pay bills keeps creeping into the back of my mind.


I’ve applied for over 30 jobs now and have received 6 or 7 rejections, a lot of no feedback whatsoever, and two calls for phone interviews. I’ve completed one phone interview and afterwards I thought I had done well for the most part, but in the last 5 days I’ve really been picking apart the answers in my head. I wish I could just let it go, but I’m obsessing. I’m not fully qualified for the job I interviewed for (no budget experience), but it sounds like a great job and I think I really want it. The other phone interview should be next week. I’m pretty sure I only got this interview because I know a guy that already works for this organization because I am definitely not qualified for this one (not nearly as many years experience as they want in this field), but I hope knowing someone opens the door just enough so I can wow them.

To keep the sanity levels relatively high, I’ve been sticking with my regularly scheduled exercise plan. Yesterday I ran 14 miles and it was a great run! After last week’s pitiful 12 I was worried, but everything went A-OK! Husband and I had to leave the house around 8am to get him to the airport which meant a super early start for me so I prepped the night before.

I left the house at 4 am and headed to the meeting point for WOOT (Women on Okinawa Trails) where I’d meet up with some running buddies at 5:30. Since it was still dark I had a head lamp and a reflective vest. I probably won’t be running at 4:15 in the morning on my own when I get back to the states, but I feel perfectly safe here in Okinawa – probably because I’m bigger than 90% of the local men. I cranked out 7 on my own, met up with my ladies, and got 7 more miles run and done. It was slightly cooler out (maybe mid-80s?), but still crazy humid. During those 14 miles I drank 2 liters of water and ate 1 pack of Clif shot bloks. I felt strong the whole time and was really proud that I didn’t take any breaks on this one gradual hill that lasted .75 miles. Boo-yah! I hope all of my long training runs go this smoothly. I also hope that I always have my yoga mat in my car. I sat on it on the way home in an attempt to protect my seats and when I got out of the car there was literally a pool of water on the mat. I am one nasty, sweat monkey and it feels so gooood!


I’m a loser baby…

“Thank you for applying for FISHERIES & WILDLIFE BIO SCIENTIST II with the FWC – Fish&Wildlife Cons Comm.  After careful consideration, the agency selected a candidate whose overall experience, knowledge, skills and abilities best match the duties and responsibilities of the position.”

Yep, that’s what I had waiting in my inbox when I woke up this morning. Now I’ve gotten other rejection letters, but this one hit me hard. First of all, that second sentence seems overly cruel and unnecessary.

I have a Master’s degree in Fisheries and over a decade of working with some of the best freshwater biologists in the country. Really? You found someone with better experience, skills, and abilities that wants to work as a Scientist II? That’s not even the team’s lead biologist. I understand I haven’t worked directly in science for a while, but I still find it hard to believe that someone could fill that position better. Maybe my ego is too big, but I know that I’m a great biologist with incredible skills for identification and a ridiculous work ethic.

The worst part about the whole thing? This was my fall back job. The job that I would go to when I didn’t get any of the 4-H Youth Leader or Girls on the Run jobs. The job that I’d be a shoo-in for because that’s what I did with my entire adult life before I got married. This was my safe bet. Now all bets our off and I’m scared and pissed. Awww, shit.