I have been complacent for far too long. For over a year now, I have worked at Joann, making little over minimum wage. And when I started working there, I thought, why, this is only temporary, I should have a new job by the winter. When winter rolled around, I was still working in Joann. When spring rolled around, I thought, why, I'll have a new job by summer, certainly. And I did nothing to change it. I waited around on my butt hoping that someone would contact me, that someone would just chance by my website or my blog and hand me money and a fast track to the top.
Lack of funds was my excuse, I can't pay to market myself. But I am very quickly (or, perhaps, slowly) realizing that I can't afford not to market myself. Unless I would like to continue to work at Joann. Don't get me wrong, working in a frame shop is aloooot better than 70% of the jobs I could be working. But it isn't what I spent four years and untold monies on learning.
At Joann, near the frame shop, they sell posters. These posters have inspirational phrases like 'live, pray, love,' and 'don't give up on your dreams,' or, just simply, 'dream.' Each of these are accompanied by images of clouds and islands and rolling waves. Each of these are printed on thin paper and mounted to cardboard, so that they can be put into the cheap plastic frames in the next aisle over. Each of these frames are then taken from the store and put into offices without windows, cubicles plastered with sticky-notes, and bathrooms with sinks surrounded by seashells and assorted face soaps.
These posters are a reminder to never give up. On what? Your watery island cloud dreams? On each of these posters is the definition of a dream 'getaway.' Why are you trying to get away!? I dream of dreaming for a living. Dreaming up images to inspire more dreams. Visiting new worlds on my canvas each day, finding challenges to attack with more enjoyment than sitting on a sun drenched beach picking sand out of my toes and holding my hand over my face while I look at the horizon.
Those posters are a symbol of loss. A reminder that, as you walk from the water cooler to your desk, you've already given up on being a movie star or a business mogul or a pop sensation. They say 'dream' but they don't say 'work your ass off and get those dreams!' That's the kind of poster I want to put up. With big black font. On blank, white canvas. My dream is a job. One that I would never want to 'getaway' from.
I just wanted to get this out. Had to tell somebody, and I think my girlfriend is getting tired of the rant. I've been so frustrated lately because it feels like all I ever do is wait for phone calls. Job opportunities, portrait commissions, people who want to purchase my work. I'm tired of calling up my family, excited about this opportunity or that, and having it all fizzle away. The phone stays silent. The e-mail is never sent. I'm not sure if I'm too patient or not aggressive enough. But I know I'm frustrated.
I want to come back to this and laugh five years from now, and tell my-younger-self, Christmas Carol style, that this was all just a stepping stone to a better life. But it doesn't feel like that right now, no sir. Thanks for listening, internet.