Wednesday, June 10, 2009


I am on the hunt. The job hunt. Great timing, huh? Is it ever good timing when you really don't know what you want to do and you are already really, quite grown-up?

I peaked out, job wise, in my early thirties. I had just graduated from law school and got a job in the marketing department of a nutritional supplements company. I liked the work which was a mix of product marketing and FDA /FTC compliance (the law part - which made me feel better about paying off my student loans.) I liked the small size of the company. I believed in the product. I even got to go to Europe twice on business!

The company was sold the month after I had my twins. I didn't work again for 16 years.

Then I had to get a job because our family was falling apart financially. I had a resume full of experience, but the last job I had came with a secretary and the only thing I had ever done on a computer was shop, help with homework and bank.

I couldn't even get an interview for a management level job. When I set my sights lower, I was questioned about my over-qualifications. I finally came up with a toned down resume and the explanation that after 16 years, I felt like I was pretty much back to entry level.

It wasn't easy. I was lucky to get the job I did, making a less than I had 16 years before. I worked very hard and enjoyed my job for 5 years and probably should not have left it. My husband never liked that I was working in what he considered a "menial job for low pay". He said I could leave it and when I was in a bad patch, I did.

Now his practice is slow and he is freaked out about our finances and telling me I have to go to work again.

This is not exactly how I pictured my fifties. I am just old enough to have grown up with the knowledge that I would have a college education, but without whatever it is that tells you to make a career choice. When I had my children, it was natural to me to be at home. I never missed working, I never really thought I would go back to working.

I have searched my heart and mind for a "passion." I have undergone career testing. I have read books. I envy those who have one. Who know what they want to do.

What I am going to do is get my resume updated and go hunting.


Lori R. said...

Oh what a tough decision to make. I did the "start over with a career" my first day was on my 40th birthday. Ouch! I found out what a computer was all about real fast. I actually became a secy. for a part time attorney, part time judge (Magistrate's are part time postitions in Iowa.) I did like my work and I found a real sense of accomplishment. Best of luck, ya never know, this may be the beginning of a whole new life for you. You might really like something different to do. Best of luck.... I'm rooting for ya!

smalltownmom said...

Good luck to you!

Nan said...

Have you considered working for the government? According to the OPM web site ( the feds have ~1600 openings in the SF area right now.

April said...

I wish you luck!

Barb said...

I really understand this and I'll be thinking about you. I have found my passion but not a way to actually earn money doing it so we're kind of in the same boat.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I know so many attorneys that are in this spot. I have a friend right now who hasn't practiced in 23 years and can't even get a paralegal job because of the job market.

One thing I have tried to impart to my girls is that you if you at all think you want children, you should get a job you can do part-time. They've really listened. My oldest is going to pharmacy school. My youngest wants to be a NICU nurse (she would be amazing at it). That might change since she's still in high school.

I'm with you on the timing thing--teaching jobs are not low-hanging fruit these days.

I hope you find something you enjoy that makes enough money.

Lisa said...

I wish you the best of luck on this! You are in a tough situation in a rough market. Listen to Nan. I wish I had.