Another Phone Interview in Review

Wow.  All I have to say is wow – and not a good wow either.  I told DH, “I was about as eloquent as a bull in a china closet.”  I specifically did not take my Klonopin because I wanted my head to be clear, but I guess I should have taken it.  Maybe things would have gone better.  I took my Straterra – I was focused. My mood has been better since the weekend, so I’m pretty stable.  I just stumbled everywhere.  I couldn’t get the words out.  I couldn’t express my passion for teaching.  I forgot all my analogies, all my anecdotes, all my stories that make me special and a great candidate.

Bomb.  It was like I was a third person watching myself fail.  I didn’t feel like I was failing, I was just watching it.  My words, where were my words?  I can tell you now how I keep in touch with some of my former students and I see the impact I had on their life and it makes me proud.  Why didn’t I tell them that?  My brain simply closed the doors to that knowledge.  I felt so empty-headed. Like staring around you at an empty ballroom. I would start answering a question and then the words stopped flowing.  Ending up with ‘uhm’ and ‘that sort of thing’ trailing off to silence.  I have so many good things to say, why didn’t I say ANY of them?

I probably sound like I am beating up on myself but I’m not.  I’m just frustrated.  I’m wondering to what corner of the universe the language centers in my brain escaped.  Sometimes I stopped myself from saying something that could have been negative, but applying the brakes to any thought process seemed to cause a shutdown of all communication skill.  I could hear the seconds tick by as I raced through my mind, looking for something relevant to the add, something to finish the sentence with.  Gone. Empty. Not even crickets chirping.

I don’t know if I will get called in for a face-to-face interview or not.  I should know by the end of the week.  But this time, I’m not counting any chickens.  Hell, there’s no chickens to count – they flew the coop.


Missed the Mark

It’s been a few days since I last wrote, well, nearly a week.  As you might recall from previous posts on the job interview and the waiting, I was very excited and nervous all last week.  Until Friday when I got the email saying nicely that they offered the job to someone else and it was accepted.  So, I was heartbroken on Friday.  I thought I had done everything right.  I thought it was the right school.  But apparently not.  It’s taken me a few days to lick my wounds.

I’ve got one more shot at teaching for the fall semester- I got a phone call from one of the schools where I applied for a lectureship. I have a phone interview on Monday. I don’t have high hopes, I didn’t have high hopes for it when I sent the applications in, but it’s a shot at least.  Take what you can get, right?  I have to go back and find out what research they do at the school because apparently that’s a high component these days.  Really?  I wanted to give up on research (for the most part) for teaching.  Maybe I need to be looking at high school.  I don’t know anymore.  Still in career crisis here.

I’m really running out of options.  I don’t even know how to find appropriate jobs at this point.  It’s too late for the school year, and the thought of working for another company turns my stomach, even if the pay would be good.  I don’t want to leave my friends here but I know that as a professional scientist, I will probably have to move again.  It’s the bane of the highly educated.  You can’t find a job in your field just anywhere.  If I lived in a larger city, then there might be more opportunities for me, but I’ve found in the past that isn’t necessarily true.  You just have to go where you have to go.

That’s where things stand at the moment.  I’m still indecisive about my occupation, and I’m still indecisive about future, and I’m still unemployed.  One more shot left on the horizon before the sunset of university options.  (Not entirely, there’s a couple possibilities for spring semester.) At least I’ve got something to look forward to next week.

PS: I will reply to your comments soon.  Thanks for reading. 🙂

© Manic Monday (manicmonday123) 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Manic Monday (manicmonday123) with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Waiting Game

We’ve all been there. There is something that you are expecting news on and you just have to wait and chew on your fingernails until you hear it: good or bad. I am currently playing the waiting game with two colleges.  One I am losing hope on, the other had told me 48 hours from the Skype interview.  Well, the 48 hours came up and they sent me an email saying that I had nice letters of recommendation and they were in the process of making their decision.  You just want to scream: Pick me! Pick me!  Or a Jedi-mind trick: this is the person for the job.  You don’t need any other applicants.  Everyone I met on that interview was so nice, I want to go there really badly now.  I hope they pick me, but if they don’t, I hope it doesn’t devastate me.

In the meantime, I still have to search for jobs in order to qualify for unemployment.  It’s so difficult.  There’s just nothing I qualify for.  And what I do qualify for, I don’t want.  (Picky, aren’t I?)  Beggars can’t be choosy. I’m not quite to the begging stage yet.  I just feel tired and stressed out over this job situation.  I don’t like being unemployed.  I didn’t like being out on disability either. I want to work.  I want to teach.  I want that job I Skyped for.  My skills fit so well with their research and but the job would be primarily teaching.  (Teaching labs mostly, but you can’t have everything.) The real downside is that it is a yearly contractual thing and not tenure track.  Well, maybe I would do better if I don’t have to worry about tenure.  It’s still a year to year thing, so it does lack a little sense of permanence.  Can’t I just have a forever home and a forever job?  Is that asking so much?  In this economy, probably yes.

I think a lot of colleges are going away from the tenure track positions and more towards the lecturer (yearly) positions.  It’s probably a cost-saving measure as I’m sure they don’t pay lecturers quite as much as they do tenure track.  And of course, there’s no tenure to contend with, so if management changes and they don’t want you anymore, out you go.  It sucks, but it’s true.  And since it’s contract, they don’t pay for unemployment.  You simply are not renewed.  Buh-bye.

I am still crossing my fingers, and hoping and wishing for this job.  I think it’s a great fit.  I hope they do too.


Skype Interview in Review

I had my first Skype interview yesterday.  It was kind of odd – very strange medium for an interview.  But I dressed the part even though my office is one of the hottest rooms in the house, despite air conditioning. (By the end of it, my cami was soaked!) We cleaned up and decorated the office so it would look nice for the interview.  I didn’t want them to see how messy I am!  I had to take my glasses off too because otherwise there would be too much glare for them to see my face.

I think the interview went well.  I hope so.  I am really interested in this position, maybe even more so than the phone interview I did for another college.  This place has more interesting research programs.  I still don’t know what the pay is but it’s poor practice to ask in an interview.  The position is on a yearly contract basis, so there is a bit of uncertainty there, but at least I don’t have to contend with the stress of tenure.  I also don’t get the security of tenure. 😦

Overall, I think it went well.  You can get a better sense of people in a Skype interview than via a phone interview.  They said I would know something within 48 hours.  I am so nervous!  I have a good feeling about this school, but I can’t rely on any Jedi-like senses for determining success or failure.  I think this school was more interested in me than the other one, so I hope that they invite me for a in-person interview or even just hire me outright!  (Wouldn’t that be cool?)  I think I am going to need some Klonopin to get me through the next day and a half.  Especially if it takes longer than 48 hours.  Universities move slow.

If anyone can spare some luck, I could use it!  🙂

© Manic Monday (manicmonday123) 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Manic Monday (manicmonday123) with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Dreaming

This week’s photo challenge: Dreaming…

ISO 100, 18mm, f 8, 1/60s

This photo was taken looking out a window at Diane de Poitiers‘ castle in Chenonceau, France. I felt that this image reflects the view a young lady-in-waiting may have dreaming of her future husband. Or perhaps, it is Diane, dreaming of her king and lover, Henri II.

A couple of down days

OK, I’m having a couple of down days here. Tuesday was great as I spent it with my BFF and we had loads of fun! But yesterday and today it was back to the job hunt, and that has me down a bit. There just aren’t jobs out there for me.  I’m going to a conference in August, and hopefully something there will work, but mostly I’m SOL.  I am still holding on to hope for a few of the teaching positions I’ve applied for but I’m getting nervous as August, and the school year, is fast approaching.  I realize that it’s just a numbers game and it only takes 1 success.  But what if that one success doesn’t come until after unemployment runs out?  I am half-way through unemployment, and since unemployment in my state is dropping, the tier 2 and tier 3 federal government unemployment won’t be available.  So I will be on my own.

OK, so I figured I would lower my standards and apply for any kind (within reason) of job after unemployment runs out.  I don’t need a PhD to type letters or file forms, but I have done it before.  It’s depressing work and last time led me to a suicidal ledge, but hopefully this time I can keep it together.  Hopefully, it won’t get that far.  Hopefully, I will have a job soon.  I am so over sitting at home.

I wish I could have written a novel or done something more productive during all this time off, but it was time well spent working on me.  Getting myself stable is no easy feat, and I think I should give myself some credit for it.  Even though I’m having a couple of down days, I don’t think this is going to turn into a mood episode.  I hope not.  I need to keep myself upbeat in case something good comes up.  There’s nothing worse than blowing a job interview because you are depressed.  (And believe me, I’ve done this several times before.)

Another thing that has me a bit down is my schizoaffective niece – Persephone.

She called me in a panic yesterday and asked me to co-sign on an apartment so she would have someplace to live.  I told her I had to discuss it with DH first.  She said she would call me back.  That was 12:30 yesterday afternoon.  I’ve not heard from her since.  When she does call back, I will have to tell her that I just can’t be a co-signer.  First, I don’t have a job, so I wouldn’t qualify because I have no income.  I think she would understand that.  But on a more personal level, even if I could qualify, this just isn’t something I could do right now.  I can’t make that kind of financial commitment to someone else when I am struggling to keep my own head above water.  Co-signing on a lease makes you liable for everything that other person does – if they trash the place, you are responsible, if they default or get evicted, it shows up on your credit score.  No, I can’t take that kind of risk.  She is un-medicated, unstable, and I know nothing about her boyfriend other than he appears to be irresponsible.  If I was working and making a $120k a year, I would probably do it.  But not now, not in this situation.

So I am upset with her – she only calls me when she wants something.  She isn’t going to see a doctor for either her mental or physical health.  She is acting irresponsible (not surprising since she is a manic state), and spending money on geckos that they don’t know if they can take care of.  They had one month of free rent, but instead of using that month to find their next place to live, they spent it having fun.  There’s nothing wrong with fun, but you have to take care of the real world too.  (I’m one to talk, but we aren’t talking about me right now.)  So instead, they paid for a week in a hotel while they look for a place to live.  Then I get a panicked phone call and now nothing.  She’s 24, in love, in a manic state with schizophrenic hallucinations.

It is so frustrating when you watch someone you love throw their life away on partying and bad relationships.  She had such a promising future when she graduated community college, but then she took a year off, and now she is in a mess.  She had been stable on medications for nearly 10 years, but she got sick and tired of the side effects and the fact that she couldn’t go out drinking while taking them.  So she stopped taking her meds.  First the Lithium, then the Seroquel.  She is allergic to Lamictal and Trileptal, but doesn’t keep very good medical records so she doesn’t know what she has tried and what she hasn’t, or what makes her sick and what doesn’t.  “I’ve tried everything,” she said.  I know that feeling, but it’s probably not true.  I don’t know.  There’s nothing I can do to help her.  I don’t like feeling helpless.

And I think that is the reason for my melancholy.  I feel helpless.  I feel helpless to help my niece.  I feel helpless in the job hunt.  Now that I’ve identified the problem, I can work on it.

© Manic Monday (manicmonday123) 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Manic Monday (manicmonday123) with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Movement

ISO 100, 40mm, f 36, 2.5s

It’s ironic that my most recent 30 Days of Creativity post was on movement!

This image of a waterfall may seem a little cliché for movement, but it is a special image to me.  It was the first time I tried to use a long shutter speed to capture the water and obtain the “bridal veil” look.  I didn’t have a tripod with me, so I was trying to balance the camera on a rock and still get a decent shot.  (I had to really crop and straighten this one!)


© Manic Monday (manicmonday123) 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Manic Monday (manicmonday123) with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.