the real world

Thanks to everyone for your great comments on my writings from the last post. I’ve been writing so many cover letters and resume objectives in the past two weeks I haven’t even been able to stomach the idea of posting blog entries. It’s funny, I have days when I love my job and others when I completely hate it, and this week I’ve been on the upswing. I guess it’s more that I really like my boss and I’ve seen more of her lately and that keeps me a bit more grounded.

Besides that, I am pretty sure that if I take a different job right now, it’s probably going to involve a pay cut, and I guess for the right job that would be totally fine, but I haven’t found anything that seems right yet. But this process has really made me think about the tension between loving what you do and having the resources to do all the things you really love and want to do. For example, I have a friend who is a pharmacist and quite young and successful. She has a good job probably making twice what I do after 6 years of school. In high school I thought she was nuts for choosing pharmacy school, because how boring would counting pills and understanding medications be for an entire life? Now I admire her and envy her a bit for making as much as she does, basically never facing a life where money will be an issue. If she is smart with her money, which I know she is, she should have the resources to buy a nice house at her leisure, and do most of the traveling and other activities she wants in life. Maybe she doesn’t have the most exciting job ever, but it’s good and she’s comfortable. There’s nothing wrong with that.

On the other hand, say I had gone to pharmacy school, or pursued law or nursing or something like that, I likely would never have had the cross-cultural experiences that make me who I am. I would never have met my husband, or any number of amazing people I have met in my short but scattered about life.

I certainly don’t regret my choices, but I wish I had had a bit more foresight when I was about 18 years old to analyze my options. What I really wish, is that I was indifferent to money. I hate to say it, but I like money. I like being able to buy things, even though I hate to say that. I wish I didn’t like money, I wish I wasn’t interested in fashion and food and books and gardening and home improvement, but I am, and I haven’t figured out how to really save money very well. The more money I make, the more I have been able to spend. Of course, we have a house and I have a newish car and student loans, so maybe I am doing alright, but my husband has legendary Mexican saving ability. I wish I had that sort of discipline, and that I could innoculate myself with a bit of perspective, so the next time I am about to binge on unnecessary cosmetics and home goods at Target, I could think, this is my lodging for one night in China next year, and put away the debit card.

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