After four months of unemployment, 97 resume submittals, 12 interviews, four networking events, an immeasurable amount of time searching job boards, lots of anti-anxiety medication, an abundance of tears, and serious consideration of psychiatric intervention, it is over!
I am no longer a prisoner of worry...worry about losing my home, worry about losing my skills, worry about losing my sanity. In less than a week, I will re-enter the workforce. I will retire my t-shirts and shorts for professional garments. I will once again have reason to groom my eyebrows, nails, and hair. I will have educated dialogue with people, not just one-sided conversations with my dog. I will look forward to the weekends, as they will no longer mirror the week.
Unemployment has been the most excruciating, humbling, and enlightening experience of my life. I've realized that I am not invincible and no amount of talent, dedication, or effort can guarantee my job. I've learned the importance of pursuing my dreams and challenging my abilities. If not for the unoccupied time, I would never have filled every wall in my home with my own paintings, begun training for a half-marathon, or written for an audience. I have learned to expect the unexpected and appreciate the opportunities to modify my "plan." I have learned that my family and friends are infinitely patient and supportive, for which I am especially grateful.
I hope that my story tenders solace to those of you reading this who remain a victim of unemployment and that you will continue to share your experience. How has unemployment effected you, your relationships, your goals, your life. What have you learned and what advice can you offer?