I’m still here, all. Do not worry. And no, it wasn’t the housework that was keeping me away all that time. But instead of boring you with a picture of my calendar…wait. Can I do that? No no, it would be so pathetic. To make a long story short, I’ve been creating fiction with myself about this housegirlfriend thing. Have no fear; Mike still loves me, and I him. We are in love. There is love flowing from the apartment above the antique shop. No fears.
But this housegirlfriend thing just isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. If you’ll remember, I talked a little about the panic attacks I’ve been having. I’ve realized something. It’s because I spend TOO MUCH TIME with myself. I feel bad for my college roommate, Kay, as she spent this much time with me, too. Mike gets an 8-hour a day break. I’m obnoxious! I drive myself crazy (tell me you didn’t think of N’Sync, teenyboppers), and it got to the point where I was able to talk myself out of it. So no more sweaty runs, except for the sake of sweating. Oh, and losing pudge. 🙂
I am obnoxious, though. I mean, I overthink everything. Irrationally. Like…okay. I got a scratch on my leg, probably from rummaging about on the bike trail chasing that adorable chipmunk, or hunting down that cardinal I heard. I honestly do not know. But I was so sure an axe murderer was in my room at night, running his hooked hand up my leg and giving me these scratches. And did you know I like to eat frozen semi-sweet chocolate chips out of the freezer at night? Well, I do. And I went through about twelve bottles of wine in a month. Maybe that’s not so bad? Glass a night? On average? Alcoholic? Whatever. Don’t judge me.
So Mike looks at me one night, frazzled, in ratty sweatpants and a glass of wine in hand (me, not him) and says, “Why don’t we go to the mall and see if you can at least get a part time job, you know, just to keep you from losing your mind here all day?” A novel idea! So we drove to the Cranberry Township mall, and I grabbed an application from every store. Remember, this is a small town, so I drove away with maybe ten applications.
Aaaaand…are you ready for this? I got a job. I HAVE A JOB! Now mind you, this is not something I want to do for the rest of my life by any means, and this is not something I think will turn into anything more. It is a job simply to give me something to do. It’s the type of job that this housegirlfriend would get once she was a housewife, and her children were in school at least all day, and the charm of bonbons, soap operas, and sleeping late wore off. I wear an orange apron. I smell pretty. And I work at Bath and Body Works! I’ve never worked retail and they’re letting me come in as a manager, so that’s pretty exciting. And after one face-to-face interview, and two over the phone while I was bustling around Ohio from Mansfield to Fremont to Columbus, back to Fremont, I got a job. So woot! And that’s pretty good, because they didn’t call me till yesterday, and I spent all weekend buying clothes that fit the uniform…sooo. 🙂 SHOPPING!
And so this is what I’ve realized from this: Being a housegirlfriend is fun, and I love having Mike’s lunch ready for him when he comes home, and I love working out when I want to, and pajamas all day, and frozen freaking chocolate chips, but one begins to feel useless. Herein lies the problem of the ’50s housewife. There’s no point of a housewife, if there are not housechildren. I mean, kids. And seeing as I am traditional (pfff) and don’t want children until after I’m married, those children aren’t coming until I am a housewife. So housegirlfriend…well, does housegirlfriend really exist? I took care of myself and inanimate objects…and Mike sometimes. But for the most part, and I hate to say this, there is no point in being a housegirlfriend.
I felt guilty, really. Because Mike pretty much funded everything. And I didn’t get to take care of anything. Now, if I had to have one kid to soccer and one to ballet and had to get them ready from school and buy Almond Milk for the lactose intolerant one, that would be a different story. But I don’t. I have to wake up, work out, and make sure my day goes quick enough that I don’t drive myself insane between periods of Mike. So I got a job.
Job. That word is frustrating in itself, and that’s part of why I was in Ohio for a week doing interviews over the phone. I’m damn lucky enough to have made friends with my professors from Ashland and from UNCW. My professor Mike, not to be confused with live-in boyfriend Mike, now works at OSU-Mansfield, and introduced me to an incredibly helpful resource named Norman, who assured me my life and my decisions weren’t a complete waste of time, and that I had potential beyond a housegirlfriend, even if it meant working at Bath and Body Works until I can find a job in higher education, which is truly my dream. That last sentence is in past tense, simply because today is one of those days that feels like I’ll never make it out of housegirlfriend.
And on Friday, I drove to Columbus, more specifically Pickerington, Ohio, to meet with a woman with whom my mother’s boss recommended I meet with. She is an incredible grant writer, and someone to surely look up to. Problem is…I’m not competitive enough to write grants full time. I’m just not into tiny deadlines and playing bad cop. I’d love to be on a team sometime…just not heading it up. I feel more schooled in grant writing, and that’s exciting because who doesn’t want someone who can write a grant? And thanks for this woman for her innumerable helpful documents and immeasurable expertise.
So this is what I learned: right now, with this economy, and with an English degree, it’s all about networking. So I intend to network. And I intend to send out pieces to be published, and to continue to apply to jobs in higher education.
Because let’s be honest: until I have a bun in the oven, there is no point in being a housegirlfriend. Speaking of which, my homemade pizza is done.
Bath and Body tomorrow. 🙂 I GET TO TALK TO PEOPLE!