Where am I going?

by — Sept. 30, 2000 (Comments)

Too little time, too much to do! The time to plan the future was junior high school. That’s exactly what we did. We were asked to choose two careers and write about one of them. I choose to be a stewardess before any of us really knew what flying was all about which facing the unknown, I was afraid to fly. That was 44 years ago. Then in high school I sewed a lot in homemaking class. We were able to model the clothes we had made in class before the whole school. The teacher had us sew these particular items for this purpose. That was fun. I changed my career plans. I wanted to be a model. It was so exciting; I was always trying to design clothing. I was a bit irritated when time after time my designs would be in the store windows six months later. Did I have talent? Who knows, I didn’t follow it up. I did model for a local department store. However, living in a small town, I was unable to take modeling classes and had to go to work to support myself through my senior year. I worked as a secretary, my second career choice because I could think of nothing else. It was the last career I would have ever chosen.

Years later, I am still a secretary. In my 40s, I went to college and got a degree, specifically so I would never be a secretary again. However, that didn’t work, businesses hire you for your experience and my experience was only secretarial. Unhappy, unhappy, unhappy. How do I break out of the mold when I am desperately trying to make enough money to survive? Someday I would really like to be able to retire and not have to work full time anymore. Not an easy answer. Too many people over my lifetime have robbed me of my retirement (men needing to be taken care of, not the other way around). Why didn’t someone warn me of this horrendous situation? Did no other woman support their men and talk about it? Were they too ashamed? Or were the men too proud to let anyone know that they were being supported? I had no idea that situation would ever happen. Men were men and they would never let a woman support them, yeah right!

I have always wanted to see Europe. What does it hold? History. I graduated with a B.S. in History and love researching history. However, who goes to Europe on their 50th birthday? My sister. Am I jealous? No! Well, maybe just a bit envious. However, I spent my time and money on a degree and I am very proud of that. She, on the other hand didn’t. I feel very lucky and proud that I have been able to do what I did. That’s why I am not jealous. However, there is always a chance I may be able to go to Europe someday.

I finally moved out of dull dreary jobs and government jobs and am now into publishing and communications. Being a secretary in the field of communications is not as dull and boring. However, I still want a creative challenge.

I find that the world has grown quite wicked. The employers don’t pay for holidays until the 90 days of probation is over. Employers don’t hire cleaning crews for the office, the employees do it all. This has happened in most of the positions I have held these past several years. Employees also have to pick up the supplies and are reimbursed. Employers don’t pay the insurance. Employers pay very low wages for these, what I call employer perks. The days of the employee perks are over, the employer tries to get all he can out of an employee and most of the time does not appreciate what the employee does for them.

Justice, there doesn’t seem to be any. Fair, it never was for some. However, it’s a different work world now. Try to save for retirement! For some of us, this won’t work for us at this point in our lives. We need to be making as much as we can so that our social security will be enough.

There’s always tomorrow and new opportunities. I need to think a plan and make it work.