Ugh. So I did not get the job. As you can imagine, I was super psyched to write all about it. (Why yes. You do detect a note of sarcasm…)
Yes, I cried. Yes, I am embarrassed. But I am not unhappy. I am disappointed and I am sad, but I have zero regrets. And that is huge. How many people can say that? About anything?
The first thing I will say is that the whole experience was great. I know it didn’t end the way I hoped it would, but that didn’t make it bad. In fact, while it was happening, I kept thinking, “this is what life really is. Life is getting excited and getting an opportunity and working your ass off for it.” But life is not about always getting what you worked your ass off for. And I am not angry. I am not angry at life. I am not angry at my friend who asked me to apply for the job. And I am not angry at myself. I was amazing. I did great work that I am proud of. And I gave it everything that was in me.
That 100% effort is something special. It leaves zero room for doubt. There is not a single “what if” lingering in my head or heart. Which is the opposite of what I was always afraid of. I am historically a half-hearted attempter. I have spent most of my life doing the bare minimum. Because that way, I never had to find out if it was true that I wasn’t good enough. If I did my very best and it wasn’t good enough, I always thought that would be incontrovertible proof that I was broken. I didn’t want to know for sure because I was so sure. But it turns out to be the exact opposite. By giving myself completely, even though I did not get the job, I am positive that I am good enough. Living so as not to have regrets also lead to no fear.
When my friend who asked me to apply for the job told me I didn’t get it, she said that my work was excellent. I didn’t get the job because the company figured out a way to get the work done with people who were already on the payroll at the company. In other words, it was not that I didn’t get the job, so much as they eliminated the job. And then she said something to me as a friend. She said that I should follow this dream, and be paid to be a writer. That lots of people needed what I could do. That having the talent was the hard part. She asked why I wasn’t already writing for a living.
The answer to that is very old. And for the first time in about 4 or 5 years, I have brushed up against it. And it hurts.
When I started writing this blog, I wanted to change the way I related to love. I spent my early life thinking that there was something fundamentally wrong with me. Not physically, or mentally. Not that I could not do the work. Not that I could not be taught and learn. Not that there was anything I couldn’t do. It is so much more primal than that. So much more terrifying. I have had the belief that there was something so wrong with me that I would never be able to succeed. Like a spiritual curse. Like bad fate. Like I was born incomplete.
When I was reunited with my boyfriend and we fell in love, this “fundamentally broken-ness” became obsolete when it came to love. And that was a miracle. I had spent my whole life wishing to find and fall in love, so when it happened, I got a life beyond my wildest dreams. For real. It still is a life beyond my wildest dreams. And I think if I died today, all of the life and all of the love would be enough.
But then somebody offered me a dream job. And I started to ask myself if there was something else I wanted. And I do. I want to make my living as a writer. I want to live like a grownup with a grownup job. I want to make grownup money. I want to know that there is nothing “fundamentally” anything about me. Except maybe human. I’ll take fundamentally human.
So my guess is that this next phase of my life, where I try to shake loose all of the rubble that keeps me buried in “fundamentally broken,” is going to be emotional, and sometimes trying. But I have dug myself free of all sorts of graves before now. And I will dig myself out of this one.