That was the question I asked Kevin the other day.
“Because if I get this job, I will no longer be flexible. I won’t be able to drop what I’m doing and pick up a sick kid. Or run a kid to the orthodontist. Or run a saxophone up to the school on a Monday morning because a kid forgot to take it. Are you sure you’re willing to take on that role?”
He says he is. I hope he will step up and do what needs to be done if/when the situation arises. He’s been rather spoiled, if that’s even the right way to say it, all of these years when it came to the kids. I’ve been the buffer – I’ve been the one to take care of all things kid related leaving him free to concentrate on his job, on his career. He hasn’t once had to worry about whether the kids were all right, or if they were getting to school, or if they had their lunches … and that’s okay. We each had our own role to play when the boys were growing up – I was perfectly okay with it.
(Though I did sort of resent him a few times – he would get to get dressed up and go work in his fancy office and have adult conversations leaving me at home in sweats and elbow deep in diapers … but then I would think of the stress he had to manage on a daily basis and look at my sweet children’s faces and know in the back of my mind that it wouldn’t always be this way, that I would someday have the opportunity to get back out into the working world and do … whatever the heck I wanted to do with my life and LOOK. Here we are).
If I get this job, I will be unavailable to my family from 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday. I told the company that I would be available, that my family didn’t really need me anymore. I know they will still need me, just not as much as years past.
If I get this job …
I can’t finish that sentence … I don’t have an answer yet.
I went on my THIRD interview yesterday.
I have to say, this has been THE most grueling process I’ve ever encountered in my working life. I’ve been pretty fortunate in that almost every interview (and I can only think of one interview I went on and didn’t get the job), I’ve landed the job. I don’t know if it’s my charming personality, or my ability to BS my way through the answers, but there you have it.
I’ve had it pretty easy.
But this go-around … wow. It’s been, and continues to be, quite a process.
The job I’m applying for doesn’t pay that great. But that’s not the reason I’m going through all of this. I’m doing this because I want to get my foot in the industry door. Maybe, a few years down the pipeline, I’ll find another position that is more in line with what I want to do (and I have no idea what that might be at this point, I’m keeping my options open – though I’m thinking it could possibly have something to do with technical writing if I’m reading the signs correctly), and since most companies hire within first before going to the public, I would have a good chance of landing this fictitious position.
And I’ll be honest. The more I learn about this job, the more I want it. It sounds challenging and interesting and I’m quite certain I would learn a lot working there. It’s in an industry I’m not familiar with, but I’m a fast learner and I always enjoy a challenge.
I wish I could be more specific with you all, but you know the first blogging rule of thumb – don’t write about work. So, I’ll have to keep it pretty generic.
For even if I don’t land THIS particular job, I have applications for other positions within the industry so it’s just a matter of time before I land SOMETHING.
Anyway … in case you’re just tuning in (Hi!), I went on my first interview a few weeks ago. I met with a recruiter whose job was to screen me to see if I was even a plausible candidate not only for the job I was applying for, but for the company in general. I was nervous, but held my ground (even though the questions she threw at me were from left field and I was left dodging and fumbling for a smooth recovery). I could tell she liked me (well honestly, WHO doesn’t? *wink*) and I charmed my way past the gate.
I was in. But where would I end up?
My second interview was with the supervisor and manager of the department I was applying for. Again, I was nervous but I went in with the attitude, “oh well. If it doesn’t work out this time, it’ll work out the next time” and I think that actually helped me. In fact, a little advice for those people out there looking for a job –
You have to CARE, but NOT care at the same time.
How’s that for cryptic?
In other words, be nervous, it’s okay to be a little nervous, it ramps up the adrenaline and keeps you sharp, but if you’re TOO nervous, then you’re likely to flub up and come off as a blubbering idiot. So in some ways, you have to sort of shrug it off and think, “Meh.”
Does that make sense?
At any rate, the second interview went really well. At least, I thought so. I felt like I did a good job answering the questions and I even found some common ground with the two women interviewing me (teenage/grown kids, kids who not only played in band but also played the saxophone, etc). And I left the interview feeling pretty confident – not confident that I had the job, but confident that I was honest with them and that I did my best.
I thought that was it. I thought the next time I heard from them it would be either to say yay or nay.
I got a call Tuesday. When I returned the call, “K”, my potential boss, wanted me to come in for a THIRD interview on Wednesday only this time, to meet and talk with the team – the other women I would be working with if I got the job.
Tuesday night, I AGONIZED over what I was going to wear. I didn’t want to dress too formally because then I might come off as too “good” for them, or a business snob, or whatever. I wanted to fit in. Make it seem like I would be a good fit with the rest of them. Thank God I noticed what other women were wearing at my second interview – smart, business attire. Nothing too formal, but it wasn’t too casual, either.
I went back to the mall.
(Have I mentioned how much I LOATHE the mall??)
I found another pair of slacks (they’re wide legs, which, I’m not sure how I feel about simply because they’ll likely be out of fashion in a few years, but *pfft* since when have I cared about fashion trends – but I bought them because they were super comfy) and tried on several business oxford shirts. I liked one top in particular, but …. $60?!? FOR A SHIRT?? I. Don’t. Think. So.
I ended up finding the same thing (only with french cuffs! I love french cuffs), at JCPenney’s for 1/3 of the price (they were on sale). I bought a black one, a white one, and a tangerine one (thinking that would look killer with tanned skin and black slacks. *snap*).
And when it came to dress for my interview yesterday, I didn’t end up wearing anything I had bought. I wore my same black slacks, and a french blue oxford top that I bought from Old Navy a while back and a white t-shirt underneath it. (Actually, I don’t want to wear any of the new stuff until after I land a job. That way, if it doesn’t work out, I can take everything back. See? Always thinking). I was afraid it was a little too casual, but I went with it.
I arrived right on time (actually, I arrived about twenty minutes early, but I stayed in my car and listened to the radio until about five minutes till) and “K” met me. She took me back to a conference room and had me sit on one side of the table while four women, plus “K” came in and sat on the other side.
I was in the hot seat.
And I said that out loud. Which made them laugh.
Whew. They had a sense of humor.
Each of them asked me a question. Which I sort of fumbled through, and then one of them asked me …
“What goals do you have for your life?”
Now, I COULD have said something smart about wanting to make a career out of the industry I was applying for, but I didn’t. I decided to just keep it honest. I knew they would be able to tell a “bottled” and insincere response, so I simply said …
“I’d like to be published someday. I’m a writer. So it would be fun to see my writing out there. Also? I just want to grow old with my husband, play with my grandbabies.” I shrugged. “I’m a pretty simple woman.”
They seemed to like that answer. For truly, it was an honest answer. I figured, what do I have to lose?
This is me, ladies, take it or leave it.
Even though that interview was by far the hardest and most nerve wracking interview I’ve had to date, I felt like it went okay. I made them laugh several times and I felt like we formed a precarious connection. “K” wanted to see if I would gel with the group as it was very important to her that her team work well together and get along.
“K” told me it was between me and one other person. I had made the top two, hence the reason I was even there to begin with – most people didn’t make it to that stage.
So now I wait. She’s pretty anxious to get the position filled, so I’m hoping for a fast turn around. IF I get the job, then I will have to go through two days of industry orientation before I actually start working at the facility where I applied.
I have mixed feelings about all of this, quite frankly. One part of me is pretty excited because I’m starting a new chapter in my life. I’m looking forward to getting back out into the working world once again and financially contributing to the family.
But one part of me is sad. I’m also closing a chapter in my life. Though I feel very fortunate and blessed that I was able to stay home with the boys while they grew up into young men, they don’t need me around as much. In fact, this will be GOOD for them because they will be forced to take care of themselves. It will also set a good example to them – mom got a job. It’s good for them to see, and hear, me go through this process. The very same process they will be going through very soon.
I think Kevin has mixed feelings about this, too. He would prefer that I stick around the office and grow my website business (which I still plan on maintaining, it’ll just be more of a part-time gig now), but I’m just not disciplined, or motivated enough, to make that happen. And the money is unpredictable. It ebbs and flows and I would prefer to work somewhere where the money is a constant source of income.
This industry has some pretty spectacular benefits, one of which is a tuition reimbursement plan. If/when I land a job with the company, I’d like to take advantage of that and maybe go back to college and work on my Masters degree. Just typing that makes my heart pump faster.
I wasn’t sure I should have even written about this journey. I mean, if I don’t get the job, then … AWKWARD. But you know? It’s going to happen. If not THIS job, then SOME job because now that I’ve walked through the door? I’m ready to find a seat and stay a while.