WOW so much has happened since graduation! What an education has transpired in these past nine months!
May 22: Graduation (Day 0)
Trip to Acadia (Days 1-4)
Job starts (day 11)
Experience restlessness of sitting at the same desk from 8:30-5
Getting to know my boss
VERY slowly becoming acquainted with HR processes, keeping track of how I spend each 15 minutes throughout the day so that I can bill my time to separate projects
Learning the meaning of “billability”
Coming home exhausted every day and racking my brain trying to figure out how I’ll have enough energy to ever go to the gym let alone have KIDS and a FAMILY (I admit it might’ve been a little premature for such thoughts)
Not knowing if I’ll have a job in September
Frantically poring over the threadbare Monster results for “botany internships jobs Connecticut”
Not knowing if I’ll have a job in October
Applying to jobs I know I won’t get for GIS managers at The Nature Conservancy and other companies. Soothing my guilt for asking professors for even more letters of recommendation.
Not knowing if I’ll have a job in January
Not knowing if I’ll have to get a part-time job for the spring
Getting a part-time job demoing Core Meals at Whole Foods. Shocking myself during the interview at my genuine passion for the ideals behind this product. Truly enjoying much of my time spent demoing, even on the weekends. Realizing the depth of my interest in environmentalism (sharply cutting down on meat and dairy purchases, buying reusable shopping and produce bags, even trying a real metal razor in lieu of staying a cog in the (women-have-to-pay-more-than-men-for-pink-and-aromatic) reusable razors landfill-filling machine) and nutrition (talking with an RN, nutritionist, and everyday people about the horror of the effectively government-subsidized obesity epidemic, the impossibility of finding a balanced granola bar (FIRST PARAGRAPH SAYS IT ALL) without excessive sugar (real or fake), and so much more.) Oftentimes, this ambivert will walk away from a 3-hour sampling session feeling energized and excited.
I just returned to this post today, January 4, 2018, after letting it linger in the Drafts folder for half a year. Thanks to motivation from my sis (hey Em!), I’ve decided to finish it- at least, bring it to today. So, five months after starting that part-time job, I found myself
Leaving said part-time job, exhausted from the demoing responsibility, and ambivalent about returning to a 40-hour work week
Watching the transformations that ensued after watching the company president amble into the office like the Terminator and dismiss my boss… all the company culture conversations that arose, all the new projects I became involved in, the reorganization of the company to ensure everyone knew the status of their supervisor and ultimately who they could turn to if they had a complaint… feeling unbelievable support from my coworkers, which continues today. Also thanking my lucky stars that they are as hilarious as they are, both in person and on gchat
Diving into graduate school research, anxiety and perfectionism doing their darnedest to prevent me from making loads of mistakes and mess up the application (in their words… in reality, these traits just made it really hard to actually research programs and reach out to professors). Reaching out to about thirty professors. Crafting an intricate spreadsheet that tracked correspondences, opinions, deadlines, statuses and creating over 100 email chains related to this venture (with their own label, of course)… mountains of ups and downs. An extremely stressful venture. But wow, have I emerged victorious, armed with new stress management skills including exercise and meditation, plus knowledge of my own self-worth! But I’m getting ahead of myself…
Working, working, working… developing skills with GIS, learning CAD and becoming a scientist-engineer hybrid (and secretly loving it), writing reports, performing different types of field work ranging from stream surveys to aquatic vegetation surveys… corresponding with and reaching out to many people in the company, mostly located in New Jersey… getting stressed out about billability…
Learning how to pack killer lunches and eat the way I want to, becoming healthier than ever during the process
Staying with the boyf I met as a college senior and continue to guffaw with at everything from squirrels running squirrel errands to the amount of time we spend plotting our meals (including at the table while we’re eating that which we just created)
Noting my marked lack of time spent researching new music, though continuing to attend incredible concerts like Bon Iver and Springsteen on Broadway
Being accepted to one graduate school (so far; it’s only January) (BIG. FRICKIN. SIGH OF RELIEF)
…to the current moment, where I’m slightly procrastinating creating an epidemiology/GIS lab for a biology professor at Georgia Tech so that I can document my life for my future self to read about and reflect on. I hope it feels as good as biting into a summer peach with an illegal amount of juice and sweetness, dribbling down every appendage and somehow splattering onto the table 10 feet away.
Though I am stressed on a daily basis, I’m learning how to handle it and think that this time in my life has been wonderful in a plethora of ways. Loved ones are a big reason why.
I could ramble on but let’s end there, on January 4, 2018, at 8:20 pm, sophomore year of “real life”.