Wednesday, April 07, 2010

spring forward




I haven't written for a while because I'm not sure what to do with this blog, and I'm not sure if anybody is still reading it, and if they are, they are all on facebook now and thus connecting with me in other ways. While FB is good for updates and news links, it doesn't satisfy the enjoyment of writing the way a blog does, but when I have tried to write lately, my anxiety about the future has made it hard to do much more than complain. Most of all, I've grown tired of sounding discouraged.

But things are changing. While Maude and I were visiting a friend in Austin, I got a call from someone I interviewed with a year ago. I was in the park, playing on the jungle gym with Maude. Well, we were actually playing UNDER the jungle gym, in the pebbles. Maude kept shoving them in her sandals, under her toes, and I kept pulling them out until I realized she was putting them there. My friend was laying on the bottom of a slide, letting the sun hit his hairy stomach, which he calls the Pregnant Lady Monkey Tummy. The air was warm, with a temperature in the 70s, and I was loving the brief reprieve from the Chicago weather.

Then the phone rang. A number I didn't recognize. I ignored it, then got a frantic text message from a friend in Chicago, telling me this job was calling me, and to call back the number. I hesitated. Wouldn't it be weird to just call back? Wouldn't they wonder how I KNEW to call back? I texted this to my friend. "Just call!" she wrote. "Don't say you heard it from me!"

I called back, and was offered a job on the spot, which I accepted, on the spot. It's a job clerking for a County judge, and apparently, there was a new opening, and a salary low enough to qualify me for some loan repayment help. With regular hours, pension plans, benefits. It's just what I really wanted right now, in fact.

The best part is that I knew about this job last year because word was passed along a network of burlesque dancers; mild-mannered office types by day, they become fierce twirlers and peelers by night, headlining various comedy venues and spicing up the social scene with some much-needed girl power. I hadn't taken the bar yet so I couldn't land the position; now, however, everything was different.

So yes, I got my first law job because of burlesque. But most important of all, I got my job because of a network of very cool women who are happy to hire other women.

In a moment life turned around. Suddenly, there was a job, a career, a salary, health insurance for my daughter when GF's job ends this summer--all the things I worried I'd never have again after tenure denial, law school, recession, the collapse of the legal job market, GF's denial of tenure. The sun was shining on my friend's belly, Maude was shoving pebbles under her toes, and I had a job for the first time in almost five years.

Dumbfounded, I hung up the phone and told my Austin friend what happened. "We'll celebrate!" was his immediate response, which tells you a lot about why we are such good friends. And then we just sat there for a few minutes, planning what champagne to buy, thinking about who I should call, savoring the moment.

11 comments:

Brigindo said...

Wow. Congratulations. We're still reading...please keep writing.

deb said...

I love the fb connection, but your pieces of writing here are gems unto themselves. Was so pleased to see you pop up on my bloglines!
And of course, another huge CONGRATS on the new job -- has it started already?

Anonymous said...

Please, keep writing this blog.
It often makes me cry a little, because it is so nicely written.
Yay for job!

What Now? said...

Oh, Sfrajett, I'm so delighted for you! and as well for GF and Maude, who of course share in your good fortune! Mazel tov.

And you'll always have readers in this space -- readers eager to hear about your legal adventures as well as the rest of your life that you're willing to share.

New Kid on the Hallway said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!! That's so excellent! Yay!

Tea Drinker said...

Congratulations!

I still read when you post.

Julie said...

Congratulations on the new job! That's really fantastic.

And I'm sorry to hear about GF's tenure story. That really sucks.

Anonymous said...

Just happened to check to see if you'd posted anything (major procrastination in progress -- working my way through every blog I know ...) and thrilled to see a post! And such an upbeat, leaves-you-happy-to-have-read one, at that! So very glad things are looking up, at long last -- and hope the good things now come in battalions.
-mer

Elizabeth McClung said...

Congrats - I am glad you are still posting, and I am glad you have a job and are doing what you dreamed to do when you stepped away from teaching english that long while ago, went back to being a student and took this journey, which is still ongoing. It is very cool and I am really glad everything has come together. Go Burlesque!

Anonymous said...

CONGRATULATIONS! This is wonderful news ...

PLEASE keep writing your blog! I love it and have been reading you for ages.

You write with such elegance and passion and beauty and yes, that touch of wry humour!

Best of luck with the new job! And all best wishes to you and yours'

Vicky said...

Your blog provided so much inspiration through my own whirlwind transitions that took me through so many changes in tastes and locales. Just 10-20 words a day, a week ...
weaving the tidbits about your tastes and expectations into your plans (re. shopping for champagne)