Change is a terrifyingly good thing.
I’ve always said that working retail, while not always a dead-end job, is not what I label as a “grown up” job. A grown up job requires:
- Full-time hours, meaning 40 (not 30ish)
- Medical/dental available
- Monday through Friday, 9-5 hours (with some flexibility, but mostly day shifts like, uh, adults)
- Vacation and sick leave
- Regular opportunities for pay raises, upward mobility, and bonuses when earned
(Having authority over people that can actually be used is nice, too, but it’s not a necessity for my definition. Seeing as how you’re more likely to either get told you’re over-reacting or get written-up for mistreating people if you enforce your authority at work… uh, no, you don’t have any authority.)
I’ve dreamt of working a M-F, 9-5 job since I graduated from high school. This isn’t some life-long aspiration. I would, however, like to avoid the “starving” part of “starving artist” as an author. I like a roof, hot water, food (not just ramen noodles), and some luxuries like a new book or movie here and there. But a job like what I have currently doesn’t leave one with much wiggle room. You’re working anything from 7am to 1am (in some retail, 24-hrs).
I like the idea of being able to NOT have to request days off for classes. I can get off work and be late; that’s no biggy. But since classes that I have are around 7:30pm, I’ll be able to just go. And weekends free… oh thanks be to the gods! I can’t even fathom having the same days off week after week… or being able to make plans more than a week at a time.
I’m infinitely grateful for a chance to grow as a person. In a “grown up” job, I have the chance to move up based on ME. Not my knowledge of policies, my flexibility of work hours, or my ability to sweet talk people into doing their jobs. I can earn MYSELF rewards based on just plain ol’ me! That may seem like a duh, normal thing. But I’ve never worked somewhere where my personality, naturally-existing skills, and work ethic can mean advancement. Pay raises based on performance are far better than no raises at all.
In this all, I’m trying to not be terrified. Change is scary on it’s own, but this is a career change. I’m young, so the two (almost two and a half) years that I’ve spent with Hastings IS my career experience so far. To switch not only from such a long-term job, but to also leave retail behind in a complete change of venue… OH MY GOSH!!!
I’ll have more time to write. More time to (sigh) clean my house. More time to just breathe!
I am blessed.