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almost but not quite

This post is almost but not quite the post that has been on the tip of my tongue for the past week (two weeks?). I haven’t made any firm decisions/my resolve hasn’t quite firmed up, so I’m still feeling ambivalent about a lot of things.

I’m a little depressed to realize that it is just over a year since I wrote this post about how I think that this is my last (only) library job I’ll ever have:

I’m fairly certain that this will be my last library job that I’m able to get (unless I’m somehow promoted within my current institution). Don’t get me wrong, I’ll stay in this position for as long as they’ll have me, but it’ll probably take a miracle for me to get another one.

Since writing that post, I managed to snag two more interviews! Which is pretty amazing and shows that I’ve finally levelled up my cover letter/CV skills such that I can pass this muster. My interview skills are… decent. I’m not a particularly charming or charismatic person, so I do my best (and at my best, is when I’m genuinely enthusiastic about a potential position). One position I interivewed for, I was under-qualified and so I understand that one. The other position…. well, I met all the qualifications. I also didn’t, in my interview, address one of the aspects that the committee was really looking for. But I also had an astonishingly quick ‘no’. Like… less than 24 hours after the interview and while first round interviews were still happening. While my subjective feelings say that I didn’t bomb the interview so thoroughly as to warrant such a firm and resounding “NO”, it could be the case.

In between both interviews… #teamharpy happened. Looking back at that post from a year ago…. I can’t help but feel that I was right. Between then and now, I also have been very active in the professional sphere. Giving talks at conferences. I published my very first article. My tech skills have definitely grown since then (I regularly write simple bash and ruby scripts nowadays). I’ve been growing and developing as professional in the ~right~ ways. Yes, I’ve not been an ideal job hunter (missing the deadline for an ideal position is totally and utterly on me).

But I can’t help but think “What else could I possibly be doing to better position myself for a full time position?”. I have no real answer for this question.

And then I think about the hours and all the energy I’m pouring into uncompensated labour so that I remain an active professional…

Is it worth it?

It doesn’t feel that way to me. I do love libraries and libtech. But I also love a lot of other things. Things that I have less time for because I’m putting my time and energy into projects that are… idk how to put this… too indirect for the stuff I’m super passionate about.

I’m doing a lot of soul searching about where I’m at right now and where I want to be and how I might get there. What I’ve been doing isn’t working. And something needs to change. And, yeah, this might mean walking away from all of my professional activities.

I’ll just quietly work at my PT job until they kick me out. And then I’ll do something else. What… idk. I’m literally at a point where I’m making either suicide plans or trying to figure out whether or not I could survive doing the homeless thing. I mean. I can be super realistic, there is always one way for an Asian ladyboy like myself to make money…1

(And. I wonder how many people will read this and think I’m being hyperbolic or just trying to get attention. No… I’m not doing this for attention or even to get people to encourage/comfort me. I’ve always been too honest. Yes. I’m going through major depression right now and this is obviously having an impat on my worldview. And, actually, I’d prefer it if people didn’t respond to this post with encouraging comments or – worse – with advice. Commisseration is fine and helpful. Please respect my boundaries.

Remember… I’m just thinking aloud in this post. I haven’t made any actual decisions. This is most esp. true of the suicidal ideation. Do not call the cops or anyone else about my mental health without my consent – anyone you could call is not the sort of people who exist to actually help people like me.)