And as I look at it, it's a bit of a downer of an update. (I'll post in a bit about my birthday!)
Back in May, I did really well on the transcription test. I finally decided to check out financial aid, see if I qualified. I had to buy a new car, I was OK with that, I figured I could qualify for a few thousand dollars for medical transcription. Imagine my surprise and disappointment when I didn't. I was told I didn't qualify on my own, that I could reapply with a credit-worthy cosigner. The catch? Everyone I know that I'd feel comfortable asking isn't a whole lot more credit-worthy than me. (No, I won't ask family - for one, I'd get the lecture on why don't I have the money saved to pay for this, and for two, that would be closely followed by the lecture on what am I thinking, throwing away my legal education like this. Never mind that my legal education is doing nothing but cost me money right now in terms of dues and taxes and continuing legal education, and my search of over two years for a job in the legal profession has gotten me exactly nowhere. I'd be throwing it away, and I'd hear about it in no uncertain terms.) K has agreed to co-sign for me, but I'm not sure it will go through. But, I appreciate the effort (and let me just say, the process of figuring out how to get that done has been a kerfuffle and a pain - if it's this difficult, maybe I'm not meant to do it?).
And so here I am, feeling like I'm flailing around, trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. I wish Pampered Chef was my answer (I'm already a consultant, just inactive because I don't get out there and drum up tons of business), or candlemaking/soap making. But I don't have the time to devote to building up a PC business, at least not now while J is young enough to still really need/want mama's undivided attention and I don't have anyone to help with him. And I'm not a high-pressure salesperson anyway - I know myself well enough to know that I'm not going to be out there calling everyone I'm the least bit acquainted with and pushing them to have a party. I'm just not wired that way, and frankly, sometimes I wonder if the market is saturated with PC consultants to the point that people hear more than enough of it. Candlemaking/soap making, again with the time to invest in it, and it's something that will take a long time to get up and running before I'd see a profit that would make it more than a very expensive hobby, and that would be with more time to put in than I really have. It also doesn't help with this that J is with me so much - he's not old enough to safely help, and he still wants/needs enough of my attention that he's not ready to be told, "this is mama's work time, you've got to leave me alone for a bit". If I had a spouse to engage him during that time, that would be easier. But he's not going to handle being told, go play by yourself for a couple of hours while mama makes a batch of soap, and I'm not about to let him near lye (I'm considering cold process soap because I think it makes a nicer finished product as a rule, better for your skin, etc.).
I thought transcription might be it, but now I can't even get approved for the loan to take the certification program. The school offers a payment plan, but it's just a few lump sum payments, not nearly as spread out as a student loan would be, and I don't have the money to make those. So maybe transcription isn't the answer, either.
So what IS? The traditional job search hasn't given me much to work with. Because of my career path thus far, I'm likely out of the running for traditional law firm jobs (since I haven't worked for a firm in the years I've been out of law school), and I'm not sure I'd want to sacrifice that much of my life to the almighty billable hour anyway. (Yes, there are firms out there that don't require the crazy hours, but even the ones that don't require 18-hour days six days a week aren't likely to be real flexible and family-friendly, and I'd have to *really* look hard to find them.) Hell, my career path thus far may have stranded me here, at least going by how much luck I've had looking so far for anything else in the legal field.
And I ask myself again, what IS the answer? Everything I think of seems not to pan out. I know there are people who think I'm grasping at straws, looking at impractical things, and I probably am. But when the practical isn't working, what other option is there to consider? At least I'm not being stupid about it and jumping right into something crazy with both feet - not like I've quit my day job to rely on my income from making candles. I'm just talking, thinking, wondering, trying to figure *something* out. Something that will let me enjoy what I do a little more, give me a little more flexibility and time with J, get me and Brian in the same place. There's got to be something out there.
In terms of getting me and Brian in the same place, me looking there may not do much good. If I found something (big if, given the size of the job market), I'd have to be good and sure it was something I could do for the long term, because finding another job should one not pan out would be a huge task. And also, he's just about burned out where he is, and there's not a whole lot for him there. He feels like it would work out better for him to look this way, so he is. He's got an application in now at one of the museums in Fort Worth, so maybe that's what's going to give.
I just feel very frustrated today. I want to change things, I just don't know how.