What I've come to learn about my generation is we were all unintentionally given a silver-plated spoon in our mouths.
Okay, first post, and I really hope I didn't lose you. Let me explain...
Our generation is full of the kids with parents who wanted to give us what they couldn't have. They wanted a better life for us, and didn't want us to settle on a mediocre job that didn't make us feel accomplished every day. We were told by parents, teachers, role models, media that we, "can be anything we want to be." What they didn't add at the end of that statement was we'd have to bust our asses to get there.
I'll be the first to admit, I didn't think it would be this hard to have my dream career. I kind of expected that shiny, silver spoon because it's what I was ingrained to believe I deserved. It wasn't until after graduation in 2010, where entry-level jobs in journalism were about as rare as a non-recalled Toyota, that I realized my perception on what my career would be like was gilded.
Sure, it would look to everyone who asked, "What do you do?" that I met that goal of being a journalist. But underneath it, in reality, it would be a replica and not pure, only a percentage of my potential and what I wanted for myself.
A year after graduation, and a year into working as lifestyle editor for a small-town paper, I made the decision to move to Washington DC if I was ever going to get the opportunity to have the career I had thought about and worked toward in earning my degree. Another thing I learned is that where there is more opportunity, there is a hell of a lot more competition. Like where you get a callback for every résumé you send in if you're in a small town or city, you can send in 15 to 25 résumés every day through job postings online in a place like DC and not get a single response. That was my life. And I didn't understand. I had the degree, graduated in almost perfect standing, worked for the campus newspaper and interned, and even received the award for outstanding graduate in journalism...and I wasn't even getting a callback?
I feel it's important to mention based on that past sentence, I am the furthest thing from conceited or thinking I am the one savior for the world of journalism. I am however, sure of myself and my abilities as a writer and journalist. That was until I spent over two years in DC with not one job offer to speak of.
As another year in DC began, I continued to work my two jobs, seven days a week, mostly to stay busy and I think to distract me from the unfulfilled life I was leading. It wasn't until I met my significant other, that I finally started to draw out of myself.
It was kind of like Jennifer Connelly in "Labyrinth" where she thinks she where she's supposed to be, safe in her room, but it turns out it's all a ruse. She's been blinded by what she wanted to be true. She's actually in a junkyard surrounded by exactly that, junk, and still in the place that's stopping her from her cause. Without inducing any eye-rolling, he was that awakening.
Rather quickly, I began to adjust that phrase I had heard so many times before. It began to sound more like, "You can be wherever you want to be."
The job, the career will come if you work for it, but what good is it if you're in a junkyard? Just because we were told to "be something" our entire lives, doesn't mean we should sacrifice the places that make us if they don't fit into our career plan.
Not 6 months after that, I packed up and moved back to New Orleans, man friend in-tow. We were fortunate enough to find jobs quickly, as well as a house. Over a year has gone by now, and I finally think I'm ready to try again. After more than two years of rejection in a city offering what feels like an infinite amount of more journalism jobs than New Orleans, I feel like I can truly put that resilient New Orleanian attitude to good use and write again.
Would you believe me if I told you, it was man friend who set up this blog and convinced me to start writing again? Just clearing out more of the junkyard.
Oh, and if you're wondering what this blog will center around. Well, the hope is that it will be about all different topics, mostly New Orleans related events or places I've been, being that's where I reside. However I really want to incorporate current events from around the globe, as well as random topics that interest me outside of my hometown. We'll see how it goes and when I finally decide to share this url.
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