I have some exciting news: I got a full-time job! I am very excited (understandably!) but two things are stopping me from doing cartwheels in the streets: it’s not permanent and it’s located 40 miles away.
This is a substitute position. In a college setting, that means the library unexpectedly lost an employee and opened up a search to quickly fill this recently vacated position. This person, however, is not permanent. Instead, a full search (which can take months to complete) will be conducted when there is more time and resources. The person in the substitute position, of course, is eligible to apply for the full position so, in a sense, the substitute position may become permanent… but there is no guarantee of that. Unless a full-time person is found, the substitute position can last a maximum of 4 semesters (2 years) but needs to be renewed every semester. So, for the time being, I have a guaranteed 9-5 job until the end of January 2011. At this point, though, there’s no telling what will happen after that. That’s kind of exciting, right?
…Well, no, not really. Because I don’t know what will happen in 6 months, I can’t move on with my life. I can’t make plans and I can’t relax. The college where I will be working is located in a different borough forty miles from my current location. Commuting up there would take anywhere from 2 to 3 hours. And that’s just one way! Ideally, I would love to move closer to the job, cut my commute in half and live in a really hip part of NYC. (I currently live on Staten Island, the least hip place in the city. Anywhere from here would be a step up.) However, because nothing’s set in stone at this point, I can’t do that yet. What happens if I don’t get the job permanently in 6 months? And I can’t find another full-time gig in time? Do I have to come crawling back to my parents with my tail between my legs? No way! So I suffer in the meantime. I have to deal with a long commute from one outer borough to another. It’s also an expensive commute: $5.50 for the Express Bus into Manhattan and $2.25 for the subway to the Bronx, or $7.75 one way. That’s $15.50 each day — or $310 per month — on just the commute. If I look at it another way, that’s over 80 hours of reading and/or knitting time a month! Maybe I’d also be able to use that time to work on the article I’m trying to publish.
It’s so hard to look positively at this situation because I want so badly to move to Brooklyn. I even got into a heated discussion with my mother and sister yesterday over it. I was telling them how I was going to brazenly move to Prospect Heights, job security be damned. They, meanwhile, were trying to tell me to wait a while, build up a decent savings account (while I live rent-free on this godforsaken island) so that I’ll have financial security in the future. Near future, they stressed. I was in tears because I knew they were right but I really wanted out. (I told you I really want to move to Brooklyn! I’m also still young so I’ve got a bit of a rebellious side that rears its head every once in a while.) It kills me that they’re right and that I have to stay on Staten Island for another 6 months.
I just have to suck it up and deal with it, I know that. And I will! I know that you have to work hard for what you want and that things aren’t always fair. I just needed to vent.