interior of a pocket watch

After a year full of momentum and growth, I find myself frozen. The cogs of my life that once clicked to the sound of progress have seized up after being exposed to the harsh elements of reality. Like any good machine, it functions perfectly in ideal conditions but unexpected variables throw it off course effortlessly. It simply wasn’t prepared for an unexpected layoff.

Now in my third round of unemployment, I find myself with a similar predicament, “find a job!” Initially upon graduating from the University of Washington in 2009, I thought that this dilemma would be a rare challenge, not a yearly struggle. Unfortunately, I’m slowly learning that instability is the new norm. Luckily having coped with the storm of unemployment twice before, I’m well versed in the tools and techniques required to survive. Thanks to a combination of savings, unemployment insurance, food stamps, good friends, and loving family members, I have been able to find a small bit of stability. But what’s next?

I use to think that the words, “To Be Continued…” were reserved for Saturday morning cartoons and didn’t have any bearing on real life. Paused now in thought about the future, I find this idea laughable. Uncertainty is a part of the human condition. Days aren’t promised, success isn’t guaranteed and misfortune can often lie just around the corner prepared to ruin an otherwise perfect day.

As much as I want to pause indefinitely and linger about the what-ifs and the past, the world marches on, forcing me to note the past but not dwell. The search for the next great opportunity starts now! Time waits for no one after all. Mission in mind, I gather my tools and prepare for another extensive hunt. Determined, I’m eager to get my wheels clicking once again and discover what’s next.

[Photo Courtesy of Flickr user Joe Skinner Photography]