Job (or Postdoc) Searches as explained by Bowie

(Because this is all there is in my head.)

First comes the sudden realization that you are graduating at some point.  That the graduate school bubble of security will end.  Oh, and also, you have to pay back all those loans.


But it’s okay, right?  Because through all of that schooling and training you gained awesome experience.  You know what you want and you can do it!  Who would pass up someone like you?  This is completely delusional, you just don’t know it yet.  So you start confidently sending out application after application.


But after one or two or three dozen and no responses…


And then you start to think there may just be something wrong with you.  Because seriously, WTF?  Are you not even worth a rejection letter?


And you think maybe that professor that openly hated you, that you had constant mental warfare with, might have been right.  And maybe you should have taken the hints and reconsidered this a long time ago.

But then, just when you’ve finished that 5th pint of Americone Dream (because it’s inspirational ice cream), you get an interview!  And after one second of celebration, you suddenly realize that means you have to be impressive in person.  That’s really hard and sucky.


But you try to pretend like you’re capable or something like that.  So you get all dressed up and put on your game face.



And when you get there, you try to be all confident and shit.


But halfway through the interview, you realize you haven’t breathed in like 10 minutes and you’re running out of ways to say “Please dear god hire me.  I will do anything.”


So that was a bust.

bowie done

(Or, I don’t know.  Some people have that confidence thing and walk out of interviews all like this:)


I don’t know. I don’t get it. Is this real? Do people ever actually feel like this after interviews?

Then people want to ask you how it went.  No matter how much you try to hide from people.  Your friends and family are always going to ask how things are going.  If you’re excited for graduation.  What your plans are.  And you have no answers.  Like, at all.


And then your friends and loved ones will try to distract you.


Or sympathize.


And you’re just all like:



getting older




More fails in jobs searches

Is there anything more painful than job applications?  You fill out one after another until you completely lose track.  You hear nothing for weeks.  If you ever do hear anything, there’s a 90% chance it’s a rejection.  One the off chance you get an interview, you get so excited that you spend your last 50 bucks on a new outfit to feel confident and impress the world with.  You get to the interview only to find 10 other people who did the same thing.  You start to have panic attacks.  You make up stupid answers to stupid questions, when the reality of the fact is, nothing you say or they say matters, you just need a job and will do anything they ask.


“What do you think you can add to this agency?” “Well, I’m totally adaptable and am willing to provide any answer you want to hear.  I work well with others, but I’m also a great leader, but also I can play a supporting role if that’s what you need.  I’m totally proficient at *insert computer/billing program, and if not I will spend countless sleepless nights mastering it.  I will do anything you ask and I will never let you down and if I ever do, I will completely tolerate the entire office throwing shade at me for weeks.  Also, I poop rainbows and stardust.  I’m willing to buy donuts and Starbucks for everyone everyday forever.  Please, please, please.  I’m begging you.  If I kill all the other applicants, does that mean you have to take me?  Because I think that shows real dedication.”


Of course there are those few times that you are applying for (and maybe even interview for) your dream job.  And you try so hard to impress them and be all like “I’m the greatest!  I’m so awesome.  But I am nothing compared to you!  Please just let me be in your presence!”  And they’re all like, naw bitch.


And then of course, you apply for jobs that you absolutely no interest in and would probably be bad at anyway, but you need something, so hey, why not?  And these are inevitably the ones that call you for an interview and you get there and you’re like “….ummm, yeah no.”  And they’re like “…ummmm, yeah no.”  And even though that interchange was mutual, you still leave feeling like crap.


Sometimes you hear nothing for months.  But you somehow convince yourself that maybe, just MAYBE they’re still getting around to making their decision and there is some hope that you might still have a job opportunity.   You know you’re lying to yourself.  And you can’t even feel good about telling yourself that lie, but you’ve run out of ice cream and alcohol and all you have left is that lie.


And your friends and significant others will try to tell you how awesome you are and you know that they’re only being supportive.  And some of them might actually believe that you are awesome.  But this too, is a lie.  Because how can you be awesome if none of these jobs think you’re awesome?  You can’t be.  It’s just not possible.  Clearly you suck and have nothing to offer anyone.  They’re not even interested in your rainbow/stardust poops.  What more can you do.

Enter quiet desperation.  At this point, I only talk to my dog because he can still think I’m awesome.  Until my current internship ends and I can no longer afford his food or denti-bones.  And I lose so much weight from not being able to afford to eat myself, that I wither away to nothing and I’m not even comfortable to sleep on.  Then he will not think I’m awesome.  And then I will have lost everything.


But I will continue to look for jobs and fellowships, because I have no choice.  I will continue to lay my self-worth in the hands of directors and committees.  For they are the deciding factor on whether or not I am worthwhile as an employee and therefore a person.

bowielove me

Affordable Healthcare wasn’t affordable for us.

As the deadline for ACA signup loomed, I was reading articles from all kinds of news sites with all sorts of opinions on why Millenials and the “Young Invincibles” were avoiding the healthcare sign up.  I learned that we were “uninformed” about healthcare and how we would all benefit so greatly from it.


Well, my dear pundits and writers, the sad truth is: we can’t afford Affordable Healthcare.


To be fair, I have insurance through school.  And it is really wonderful.  I actually got to go to Urgent Care guilt-free when I couldn’t walk.  I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to scrounge up money for the lady doctor.  Even seeing a therapist is covered.  So insurance is wonderful.

Boyfriend, however, does not have insurance.  Through his work, it is about $250.  Even through the ACA, it’s $145 a month.  Now, we do not make much money, even though we both work full time.  I’m on intern pay, meaning shit.  And we live in Chicago, meaning we pay outrageous amounts for everyday things and rent is out of control.  We’re homebodies and rarely go out.  I cook most nights.  I grew up in a big family, so I’m well versed in making cheap ingredients into big delicious things.  We’ve never taken a vacation together.  I get my hair cut 2-3 times a year and have never had my nails done.  We drive a 12 year-old car.  Point being: We’re simple folk.  There isn’t much for us to cut back on.


We know that it would be a good thing for boyfriend to get insurance.  He’s in really good health, but accidents happen and insurance is happy!  When we got the quote, however, we had to wrestle back and forth with our budget.  Could we cut anything and where.  And believe me, we have  spreadsheet of our expenses down to our dog’s denta-bones.  We wrestled with this for weeks, until the deadline for sign up.  And when it came down to it, we can’t carve out $145 a month.


This is the reality that the news coverage is not recognizing.  I talk to our friends, most of which are in the same situation. The plans that are affordable don’t really cover anything, or only kick in after you spend several thousands of dollars.  So pretty much, stay in killer health or approach death are the plans that are offered that are affordable.


We want health insurance.  We know that we would be better off with it.  However, we also need to eat and pay rent.  Many of us are stuck working low paying jobs, without the hope of a raise or promotion.  Job searches go on forever with no hope.


So boyfriend is forced to opt out.  Not because he doesn’t want insurance.  Not because we hate Obamacare.  But because, not matter how much we work and how much we try to cut back, we can’t afford this.  Sorry, Obama.  Sorry, media.  But we’re not obstinate.  We don’t think we’re invincible.  We don’t think you’re an evil socialist.  We’re just broke.


And it may sound stupid.  And we know that we’re rolling the dice here.  But we have been for awhile, and there’s no other choice right now.