The Waiting Room

This could take a while...

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Searching...

Posted by Seeking Solace |

I have no idea where my motivation has gone. It's not like I don't have anything to do. I have tons of things that need to be done. But, even with my trusty To Do list, my motivation is lacking. I begin each day with good intent. And, most days, I am good. But today, even my usual tricks that help me get going are not working. And, I am usually ready to go after my morning run/walk with Junior. But, that hasn't helped at all.

Even writing this post is a painfully slow process.

I am not sure if this is a rut or if I am just bored.

Maybe, it's frustration.

Depression?

 A little bit of everything?

I do miss blogging on a regular basis. I think that when I am writing about what is going on in my crazy, mixed-up world, I am able to process what is going on in my head. Although, I am not sure if there are people out there who still read. But, then again, it's about processing. Having the support of a community of readers helps. I love having input from those out there who do read. But, again it's about trying to figure out all this shit that goes through my head.

Friday, September 05, 2014

40-Something Paradox

Posted by Seeking Solace |

I have often said that being in my 40's is fabulous. And it has been fabulous. I am in the best shape of my life. I am confident in many aspects of my life. I don't give a rat's ass of what people think.

But, there is one part of being 40 that is not so fabulous...being passed up or not being valued for your experience because of your age.

Husband is experiencing this at work. He is considered the "old man". He and two other guys are in their mid to late 40's. They have 20+ years of experience in the field. Yet, they are having to answer to younger guys who have little to no experience in the field.  In two cases, it's their first job. Needless to say, Husband and his buddies are frustrated because they see things that are wrong, yet management wants to go with what the young guys want to do. And, when Husband and the older guys try to show the younger guys the error of their ways, it is met with arrogance.

Needless to say, Husband is an unhappy camper. It could be that the HMFIC's at Husband's job are just being douchey. But, that does make the feelings less real.

 I've seen this too. I often wonder if part of the reason that I am being passed for jobs in my age. It doesn't take a math genius to see that on my CV, I am in my mid 40's. But, I often wonder if my experience is a detriment rather than an asset. Now, I am not saying that there is discrimination going on here. I can't prove it.

But, it does give me pause.

I remember when I began looking for attorney jobs. No experience meant no job. The rub was how does one get experience when you are not give to chance to get experience. Now, it seems the rub is how is one rewarded for their experience when those in power do not recognize the value in experience?

And, there lies the paradox.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

It's Hard

Posted by Seeking Solace |

My summer vacation has come to an end. Classes at HBCU started last week. Classes at PhD Uni started today; however, my class does not start until next Tuesday. This gives me some extra time too make sure the class I am teaching is running smoothly before I get consumed with PhD stuff.

So how did the summer go? Well, let's see...

The good...

  • I will be presenting at a conference in November. My first proposal and it gets accepted. Woot, Woot! 
  • I am up to 2 miles of jogging with Junior.  
  • No RA or FMS issues. Still in remission. 
  • I maintained my weight loss. Actually, I am down to 136 pounds, which is two pounds less than my goal. I have been doing some strength training, so I am sure that helps. 
  • Husband and I had two fabulous beach vacays. 
  • I have some lovely herbs, including one massive basil plant. 
The not-so-good...
  •  I have yet to take the GRE. Studying kinda fizzled out. 
  • I have yet to finish my IRB. I've learned that trying to track down professors over the summer can be futile. 
  • Job search went no where. There was the CC job, which I am convinced they never read, a job and PhD Uni that was a long-shot and one at HBCU that they barely acknowledged. I have three more that are stuck in "In Progress" land. 
The not-so-good stuff led me to spend most of July wallowing in a pool of self pity and depression that prevented me from accomplishing much of what I wanted to do. Husband thinks that possibly I was in the depression stage of grief. The grief being that I had thought/hoped that my current underemployment status would be short-lived. Yet, it's been a year and I am still in the same place I was a year ago.

He's right. And, I know this. It's just hard. 

Monday, July 28, 2014

What's It Gonna To Take?

Posted by Seeking Solace |

I received an email from a local CC letting me know that despite having numerous qualified applicants, they were looking for someone who best fit their requirements. Therefore, I was not selected for an interview.

Really? I thought I hit all the requirments for the position. Let's see...

  • I've taught the course in question for many years and I am teaching it currently
  • I have experience with online learning. 
  • I have all of the educational and employment requirements. (Those of you who know me IRL know my history.)
  • I have devoted my academic work to adult learners, which includes my PhD studies
  • I have a stellar teaching record.

Yep. I can see why I didn't get an interview. I am seriously under-qualified (Insert sarcastic look of disgust.)

I can understand having many applicants for the position. But, did anyone really look at my CV and other materials? I sent an email to HR, inquiring what deficiencies were present in my application, so that I could address them. I seriously doubt I will get a response.

If meeting all the requirements, and then some, is not enough to even get an interview, what's it gonna take?

Because, I have no idea.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Counting Streetlights

Posted by Seeking Solace |

Runners use many things to keep track of their distance. There are tons of devices and apps to help one monitor how far they go. I use a pedometer app on my phone and wear one of those armbands that hold my phone. But, it's kinda hard to look at my progress while running and holding on to Junior's leash (plus, a poop bag, if needed).

I count streetlights.

I live in a subdivision that has one large loop and two smaller streets that intersect the large loop. The large loop is about a mile and the two intersecting streets break up the loop at a quarter and half miles, respectively. As I progress with my distance, I am not always able to make the quarter or half mile mark, so the streetlights are a great visual for me to see how far I have gone and where I need to go.

I've been stuck at the 1.5 mile mark for a while. Usually, I can add one or two streetlights every two weeks or so, if I stick to my four to five day a week run/walk schedule. This consists of running one day, walking the next, and then rest on the third day. Or, I add another run or walk day followed by a rest day if I feel up to it. But, I have not been able to add a streetlight past the 1.5 mile mark for about a month.

That is, until today.

I didn't think we would make it out for a run. It looked like it was going to rain, so I was sure that we would get caught up in it. Junior was pretty persistent about going, so I decided to give it a go. Once we finished our warm up walk and reached our start point, we started cruising. I noticed that as we got close to the 1.5 mile mark, I felt like I had enough gas in the tank to reach another streetlight. Once, I past that streetlight, I had enough gas to push past the second streetlight. I decided to stop at that point. so that I would not overdue it and send myself into an RA flare. Also, I wanted to make sure that Junior was not too overheated or overextended. I added two streetlights. That was enough. I checked my pedometer, and sure enough, we added 1/10 of a mile.

My goal is to complete a 5K by the end of the year. With Junior's help, we are on our way.

One streetlight at a time.

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Half Full

Posted by Seeking Solace |

So, I think I have risen out of my summertime blues. I re-adjusted my daily schedule, which has helped. I also allowed my feelings to just "be", rather than try to fight them. I came to the conclusion that I only have about one month left of freedom, regardless of what happens job-wise. Once August arrives, I will be super busy. So, I should enjoy July and not worry about the other stuff...too much. 

Even if nothing pans out on the job front, I still have my one class gig at HBCU and I can take two classes at PhD U. It's not ideal, but it's better than having no job at all. And, I will be further along with my PhD. If I am working full-time, I can only handle one class. Having two courses at PhD U will allow me to make some connections with people in the program. Networking is always a good thing.

I did apply for a position at a Law School teaching research and writing. I often thought that if I taught at a law school, I would teach research and writing. It is not a TT position; it's a renewable contract position. That doesn't bother me too much, as I am used to being in that position, although I will be asking if becoming TT would be a possibility. That is, of course, if I get an interview. I did write one kick ass cover letter, probably one of the best cover letters I've ever written. Even if nothing comes of it, I have a new cover letter template, which will help me in the future.

I am still preparing for the GRE. The quantitative section is a little rough, but Husband is helping me with some of the math. It's not like the SAT where I have to provide the correct answer; it's just comparisons. But, I do need to use some algebra and geometry to make the comparisons. I have not used those skills in 30 years, so I am a little rusty. Husband is a good teacher and I am able to recall and apply the information. I am just reminding myself that I am shooting for a "D".  This has been my plan since the summer break started.

With the conference coming up, I need to do my fieldwork. I will be interviewing students and will need time to set those up. Plus, I will need to transcribe, code and do all of that other stuff. That takes time.

I follow a RA support group page on FB. There is a woman who has RA and is running a 5K after losing a lot of weight and being in remission. I was thinking about doing a 5K before I read about this woman's journey and after reading it, I was inspired to do the same. I am thinking about doing the Arthritis Run in December. That would give me enough time to slowly train my way to 3.1 miles. Currently, I can do one mile. So, if nothing changes, job-wise, I will have more training time. I have to train slowly, so that I do not anger the joints too much.

With all of that, I realized that my glass is half full. Even if nothing works out on the job front, I am no worse for the wear. I have enough on my plate to keep me somewhat satisfied.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Summertime Blues

Posted by Seeking Solace |

It was bound to happen...I have the blues.

The Summer of Seeking Solace is has been OK. I've been reading for pleasure and for the PhD. I learned that my conference proposal was accepted for a conference at West Coast Law School, which also means I need to get an IRB approved to do the interviews. I've been studying for the GRE. I've been going to the pool, cooking, going for runs with Junior and just hanging out.

And...I am now tired of all of it.

I know, I know...I should be enjoying this time because when August comes and classes start again at HBCU and at PhD U, I will be busy. Add the research, and I will be super busy. I totally get it.

Yet, I am in this funk.

The problem is the whole job hunt thing. It's hiring season. I applied for a faculty position at HBCU. After some strange twists and turns, I should know (hopefully) next week if I will get an interview. Also, a faculty position at a nearby law school has my name written all over it. I am waiting on one reference letter before I upload and click "Submit".  I applied for a position at local CC and have heard nothing but crickets. Of course, nothing will probably happen until after July 1st. But, all of this just has my head spinning. I wish I could just put the entire job process out of my head.

But, I can't. I can't focus on what I need to do. I will get short spurts of motivation, which last about an hour. After that, nothing! Even my usual tricks to get myself motivated are not working. Honestly, I am surprised that I've kept up with running. If it wasn't for Junior's persistence, I probably wouldn't go. Running is the one thing that has kept me relatively sane.

I've thought about changing my daily routine as a means to give me a jump start. Right now, my daily routine is so predictable. Junior knows exactly when it is time for lunch or going outside. Dogs are creatures of habit, but this is a little overboard.  So, since it is stupid hot season in Elsewhere, running with Junior will have to be much earlier in the morning. It's a little hard for me because I am not a morning person. But, it may give me an extra boost that will allow me to get some things done.
I will also need to change my routine on my off days from running. This may be a little harder.

Something else I want to do is to change my workspace, My desk in the home office is too small and it does allow me to spread out. Using our dinning room table is just not cutting it. Husband said I could use his desk, which is much bigger. But, I need my own desk with my stuff set up the way I like it. Our office is a large space, so I think getting a second large desk will work.


Perhaps these changes may be the cure for my Summertime Blues.

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