Greetings and welcome. I was going to write about current events in my life, but thought I would continue the theme started by NanceMuse. After attending a small college prep school I went to a very small four year college located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. History degrees are probably a noble pursuit, but mine has never been used in the field. My original intention was to continue on to law school. I doubt I would have liked it so there's no point in regretting past opportunities and what could have been. I went to grad school because my job was willing to pay for it and I had this theory that having an MBA was going to catapault me toward great riches and future success. My first class was statistics and I think my poor professor gave me a D because he didn't want to have me as a repeat student.
My second class was organizational behavior. I was working at an accounting firm during tax time. I sat in my cube crying because I was so lonely and sad. My marriage was already rocky, I was processing tax returns instead of trying to support accounting software programs. My boss thought I had more experience than I did. It was a thoroughly horrible experience and I'm not really sure how I managed to survive. After my youngest was born I went back to school to pursue a nursing degree. I finished the course work, but ended up dropping out to be home with my children who were sickly and malnourished despite my efforts to feed them well. At the time they were both on medications that cost $600+ every month. It was a very rough time for all of us.
Recently I went back and took the dental assisting class. I found out that while I love the dental field I do not want to be an assistant. Today I work in the wellness department of a small local organic grocery store. In most other stores this would be the health and beauty section, where I work we also sell things like ear candles and homeopathic blends. While I don't agree with everything we sell, it isn't my job to advise people on what they should be doing. We can point people to products, but we never offer medical advice or claim that a product will do anything for them. We tell people that we're clerks selling toothpaste and tampons. There's a sales element to my job, but I don't collect commissions on anything I sell. I'm strictly an hourly employee who stocks shelves and waits on customers.
What makes me good at my job is my willingness to listen to people. Sometimes I tell people it sounds like they need a hug and ask if I can provide that for them. We sell some books that I really like and have purchased for my own personal reading. Most people who come in already have an idea of what they want. Most of our customers are extremely well educated, know what they're there for, grab it, and get out of there. Others linger in the aisles, picking up this or that thing to ponder the packaging. Some people are scared of herbs. Others want that quick fix weight loss solution that simply doesn't exist. Some of our customers are very wealthy, people who can come in and drop ninety plus dollars on a tiny bottle of face cream. Others are earth mothers or people who believe in organic sustainable practices.
Of course we have the people who hop in their SUV, drive half an hour to get to us, and wrap every individual item they buy in its own plastic bags. We have employees who eat fast food for lunch on a regular basis, but we also have very dedicated and passionate people who believe in putting the freshest produce and the highest quality bulk herbs and spices out for others to buy. We get shoppers looking for exotic ingredients, fitness buffs who come in decked out in their workout gear, and the hipsters who walk hand in hand through the store. We have some elderly people who live nearby. We have very young people who are living on next to nothing working for us. Some of us have gotten tired of corporate America and choose low pay and long hours on our feet for a chance to chase our passions.
Out of all the jobs I've ever had, this is my favorite. Part of that is my boss. Part of that is the environment. Our store is orange and green which probably sounds unappetizing, but they're very tastefully chosen colors that work well together. The outside is a mixture of bricks, stone, and colored parts that harmonize well. We have a large outdoor patio area on the main level and a smaller terrace up on the roof where I sit to eat lunch. Up there we grow tomatoes and hot peppers. Our store isn't perfect, it feels like a large family with the inter-department squabbles and bickering, but there can also be tremendous support when you need it most.
Last night I sold our couch, dining room table, and washer and dryer to a guy I work with and his wife. Perhaps I could have made a couple extra dollars selling it on Craigslist, but I felt good about offering it to them. I thought they would be in and out, but they stayed to chat. Jane stopped by with her dad, we talked for a while and wished them well when they left. I really like this guy, he works very hard and always seems encouraging and motivated at work. His wife is quiet, but as I learned last night, opens up to people when she chooses to share her story. They have a set of identical girl twins who are eight. I know that my things are going to a good home, it makes me feel good to be able to help them out in this way and it helps us as well.
Today I was told that I could move in as early as September 1 which is great news now that I've sold half the furniture in the house along with key appliances. I'm doing laundry like mad today since I know I won't have access to a washer and dryer for another week and possibly longer. I don't have much to move, but due to the time constraints I don't have many people I can call on to help me move on such short notice. I know everything will work out and I have time since the house won't be sold for a bit, but I'm feeling the pressure which is a bit of an understatement. This is forcing me to live the minimalist life I claim to endorse, good for me, but requiring me to make decisions in a hurry.
The hardest thing so far is the books. I know I won't have room for them, it's hard to let go of what seems like a wealth of knowledge and a connection to a period of growth and transformation in my life. I was thinking about asking Jill and Jane's dad if I could get the bookcase back from him, but my sister made a good point and argument for keeping the TV instead of the bookcase. I can always get something smaller for my books, then I'll have room for both. While I'm not a big TV or movie watcher, I enjoy watching baseball games and think this is something I can do with the girls. They're both big readers, but there isn't a lot for them to do over at my place despite the games. It's a compromise and I can do this for the girls and myself. Much more on my mind, but it's getting late here.