These days, I find myself in a bit of a funk. I’m not depressed, because I’m well aware of the symptoms of depression and I have no forms of those symptoms. I still love the things I enjoy, I still find reason to be happy, I still feel joy and sorrow and all the other emotions, and I’m basically still the picture of healthy brain chemistry. I’m blessed with that and I will never take that for granted.
That said, I’ve really been in a funk lately. I would say probably for about three months now, I’ve been feeling very ‘stuck’. I was rejected for the ONLY grad school program I was interested in that is within driving distance of where I live (I have no desire to move away), and after that I found myself in a rut. Though it’s not shocking I wasn’t accepted (the acceptance rate is only 10% at best for this program), I was really banking on that to be my ‘next step’.
I hate my job.
I do. It’s my first full-time job but also the most boring job I’ve ever held in my life. I’m a bank teller, and in a small town at a hometown bank, that means you’re decently busy on Monday and Friday and every other day of the week you spend up to an hour sitting in your station with NOTHING to do. We can’t have phones or books or anything to pass the time, and there’s only so much you can talk about with your coworkers when you are a queer democrat with no desire for a family and live in the rural south where some people still don’t let their kids read Harry Potter because of the witchcraft. I can’t leave my station except at lunch and to go to the bathroom, and even that I have to be sure there are two other tellers out front or else you CANNOT go pee (legal reasons). I’m terrible at my job to boot. I suck at math, I’m somehow even bad at counting even though I try SO HARD to go slow and use the sticky-finger stuff so the bills don’t stick together, and I’m constantly worried I will be fired, because even if I hate my job, I have a crippling fear of disappointing people.
However, of ALL the stuff I’m qualified for, I live in a town where even though it isn’t a tiny town, jobs tend to not be advertised as much as, “I know someone, let’s hire them”. The only reason I got this job is because a bigger bank DID advertise, and when my dad’s banker heard I applied to another bank, he offered me a job without me having ANY qualifications for this position. The reason I took it is because it offered $11.50/hr straight out of college in a state with $7.25 minimum wage, FULLY FREE health AND dental insurance, a 401K plan, and 2 weeks paid vacation every year. And after 6 months I moved up to $12/hr, so even less of a reason to quit. I CAN’T quit this job unless I can find something in my field that offers similar pay and/or benefits.
Unless, of course, I was going to grad school.
I was really banking on grad school giving me a reason to quit my job. I hate this job. It’s an AMAZING job but I hate it. I hate the monotony and the boredom and I honestly hate the customers. The number of time old drunk guys flirt with me or hyper-conservatives praise Trump to me (I obviously won’t offer my opinion since it’s A) unprofessional, and B) I live in a state where employers don’t have to give a reason to fire you and I KNOW I’m the odd one out) and expect me to join them, or just the general shittiness of the tasks of my job, it’s all just terrible. I hate dirty ass money. Money is disgusting and I’ve been a germophobe since I was like 13 and I can’t go wash my hands 12 times a day because I can’t leave my station.
Getting rejected by grad school means I can’t justify giving up such a well-paying, AMAZING benefits job. And since I have nothing else down the pipe now that I’m not going to grad school, I just have this sinking feeling I’ll be like one of my coworkers who has been a teller for 20 goddamn years.
It’s got me in a funk so that I don’t go to the movies as often, because my free-time is so limited. And I don’t read as much because I have less free time. I don’t watch TV anymore because I got behind and can’t feel bothered to catch up. It isn’t that I don’t want to do fun stuff anymore, it’s just that I haven’t got enough free time to DO all the things I used to do, so now I spend all my free time writing.
My fiction writing is booming, but I can’t afford an agent and am terrified of self-publishing, so it’s pointless. As a result, I have literally NOTHING to look forward to anymore. I’m not unhappy in general, but I have no GOALS. I’ve spent all my life from 4 to 26 with goals in mind regarding school and college, and now that I’ve been graduated for a year and didn’t get into grad school and can’t really afford to move (or want to move) to go somewhere else I might WOULD get accepted, I’m spinning my wheels. I don’t know what I want to do with my life.
I’m stuck in a rut.
That’s why I’m not posting as many reviews, that’s why I’m not engaging as much, and that’s why I’m so distant lately. Even though I may not be depressed, I’m in a funk. I’m having a TRUE quarter-life crisis and I don’t know how to get out of it.
So please, don’t give up on my reviews or my essays. I’m trying to hard to get back into keeping up with the times, but I’m finding it so much easier to just sink everything into the last creative endeavors I have left. I’m so used to a LIFETIME of creating stuff and getting validation from teachers and professors that now that I’m stuck in the ‘real world’, I’m just spinning my wheels. I hate that I’m not working on my non-fiction writing anymore to a level I want, but it’s just so hard to care when there’s no goal in sight.
I’m not giving up on myself, so please don’t give up on me.
And if anybody else feels like this, please know you aren’t alone. I hate this. I feel so alone because there is no sympathy to be found. I’m making $12/hr straight out of college at an easy job with amazing benefits, boo-hoo. I understand why I get no sympathy here, because most people don’t have the same aspirations and goals I do. But anybody else in a similar situation, I feel sympathy for you. I feel your pain. You aren’t alone.
I’m going to be okay, and so is anybody else who is in this sort of situation.