My friend Caitlin sent me that analogy this morning… she’s exactly right.  But I think I’d add the other elusive on there, too.

I didn’t realize how down I’d been about this unemployment thing until I put my suit on this morning to get ready for my interview.  It felt… AMAZING.  I felt like a whole person again… which is strange.  Until this morning, I didn’t know a piece of clothing could have that kind of effect on me.

The truth is, I’ve been down because I’ve always defined myself by my job.  When I was 12, I couldn’t wait to volunteer at my local library, because then I’d have the chance to say I was going to “work.”  I couldn’t wait to turn 14 so I could work at McDonald’s.  I couldn’t wait to make it to DC so I could have an internship.  And I couldn’t wait to graduate so I could start my career.

Ambition is both a quality and a downfall.  To this point, I’ve been incredibly lucky in ALL of my employment pursuits.  I wanted to be a McDonald’s manager, so I smiled at every customer, memorized both the breakfast and lunch menu and volunteered to work in Drive Thru every chance I got.  I was a manager six months after I started.

(And yes, I understand that it’s MCDONALD’S and that they hand promotions out like candy.  But I was 16, and I thought it was pretty cool.)

My point is that this unemployment has been HARD.  I’ve felt rudderless for the first time in my life.  I’ve never had to ask what’s next because I’ve never given myself the chance.  I’ve rushed into the next endeavor without blinking, and even though my eyes were wide open, I was blind to the person I was becoming.

I want to be more than my job.  I want to be recognized, not for that ambition, but for being a good person.  For being someone people trust, and want to spend time with.  I want to be the whole package.

These past few months have meant more to my personal growth than any job I’ve ever had.  But, that said… I’m still excited at how well my interview went today.  Some habits are hard to break. 🙂