I begin tomorrow as marketing content provider and online community manager for a LED lighting manufacturer. Initially it’s on a contract basis, but should I do my job well the door is open for it to be a permanent position. Which, obviously, is the goal.
It’s been quite the long and strange trip, these 303 days since first being laid off and now being back in the workforce. Hopefully the lessons learned will remain ever fresh even as the days during which they were learned fade into the past, prayerfully never to return.
I learned that people respond in different manners to you when you’re unemployed. The true friends stick with you and encourage you throughout, never wavering in their support and affection. Others? Well, they remain addicted to their meme no matter what, sneering at you to get a job and calling you the scum of the earth for accepting unemployment. Might want to work on that lack of compassion for the sake of maintaining ideological “purity,” fellow conservatives. One day the chicken will claw you.
I learned how to become a professional job hunter, wryly noting how I oft hoped this would end soon and I’d get a job so I could get some rest. Job hunting is a lot of work: constantly scouring job boards; seeking anyone you know that might know someone who knows someone. It’s unrewarding, draining work. I highly recommend it to no one.
It’s also quite a test of faith, one I’ve often failed. Thankfully, God’s tolerated all my raging moments. I wouldn’t say I’ve come out of this a doubt-free believer. But I do still believe.
Yet although faith remains, there is a new appreciation of, and for, those who struggle with belief. There were many moments spent wondering if God really cared, or even if He was there at all. It’s not the easiest thing to believe when you’ve received nothing but rejection for months on end, watching your savings melt away and wondering how you were going to pay the bills. The frustration of seeing others in need and not being able to help also took its toll. It is my prayer those days will not return.
But I did survive, learning along the way how to better present myself to potential employers. I took stock of all my professional accomplishments, and showcased them without apology or compromise. If you don’t believe in yourself and what you’ve achieved, how will anyone else? If you don’t tell them everything you’ve done, along with the why and how, how will they know? In the end, it came together.
And so it does end tonight. My appreciation and love beyond what mere words can express goes out to those who encouraged, challenged, exhorted and prayed for me throughout these days. And, to those who never lent a hand, who said I could never secure a new position on my own merits, ignored my plight as they saw nothing in it that could further their own cause (namely themselves) or ran me down for being obviously defective and deficient because I was unemployed…
… well, I forgive you.
P.S. Not the greatest band, but since I swiped this post’s title from them it’s only fair to give them the credit: