Alex in Transit(ion)

A great WordPress.com site


Leave a comment

…and just go.

A good friend and I were talking on my day off. Although we see each other every day, we rarely get the time to really chat but when we do get to talk, I always feel so inspired by her. If there’s anything I love about these experiences I’ve had these last couple of years, it’s learning about how caring people can be and she truly epitomizes that. 

We were sitting down and talking about me going to graduate school next year. She asked me if I had plans to study abroad and I told her that even though I would love to, I was afraid that if I studied abroad, that I would be missing out on job and internship opportunities. She understood, but said this:

“Alex, if there’s anything you do before you graduate, just go to Europe with a friend who is as curious as you and backpack. Have some direction with where you’re going but do what you want.”

I smiled when she said that because I always fall for that kind of wanderlust. That is my dream- to save up whatever money I can and just go from destination to destination. Ireland. England. Denmark. The Netherlands. France. Germany. Turkey. Greece and then spend as much time as humanly possible in Italy and finally see where I come from. 

I can’t help but to close my eyes and smile every time I think about that. It’s going to happen one day. 

For some reason, Pearl Jam is the perfect music to listen to late at night. Vedder is truth. 

Advertisements


Leave a comment

oh, reality.

Do you ever have those dreams that you swear are real but they actually aren’t?

Last night, I dreamed about flying to Paris. 

I realized I was dreaming when I woke up and thought: “wait, I don’t have money to go to Paris.”

Thanks, reality.


Leave a comment

it takes an ocean not to break.

Today solidified the fact that people who specialize in researching legislative history are good people in my book. I was trained to how to use LRS, which is basically New York State’s legislative research database. I’m no stranger when it comes to researching legislation, that was basically my job when I interned at the FCC. Just like the staff at the FCC, my trainer at LRS was so nice. Honestly, even though it’s a lot of behind the scenes work, I really enjoy researching legislation. I find the whole process fascinating, especially when it comes to analyzing the intent behind a certain bill. The only downside to the day was that my sinuses are still killing me. I just want to sleep this whole thing off.

I’m getting more excited about things now. It was cute, one of my friends asked me if I had a guy in my life and I told her that my love life is non-existent. I don’t know what it is, but I’m really secure in my life right now. That things are going to be good, no matter what. My friend told me that she wants to take a road trip in the summertime since she’s going to be laid off by then. I realized that I will be too, the internship ends in July. Pre-campaign Alex would have been scared to death about that. Not knowing what’s going to happen next. Post-campaign Alex doesn’t worry about that kind of stuff anymore. I was so worried when I was in Potsdam about the aftermath and what’s going to happen next. I wish I never did. Yeah, it’s good to have a healthy fear of uncertainty but I don’t want to think of things like that anymore. I just want to dive into life and just take each day as it goes…smile, run down the streets, laugh, laugh, and laugh some more, be carefree, lay in the grass, listen to music, hike up mountains, and jump into rivers. In fact- I used to do all of those things. For a while, I thought they weren’t going to happen again. Now I see that no matter what happens to me in life, I will always have that part of myself…

Why?

I don’t think I want to know the answer. It would ruin all of the fun.

This is my “I have already gone through a box of tissues and my sinuses are dragging me down” face. I thought about not doing a 30 for 30 picture because I look like death but what’s one bad picture going to do to me? Nothing. In my hands I have my certificate stating that I’m a rockstar when it comes to researching legislation and Mucinex. Combine the two together and you have one productive Alex when she’s feeling under the weather.

  • Scarf from the Pear Tree (I’ve been wearing this a lot this week)
  • Dress from Forever 21
  • Vest from New York and Company (wore that yesterday)
  • Belt from Forever 21
  • Tights from American Eagle
  • Boots by White Mountain via DSW
  • Flowered bobby pin from H&M

There is a look I want to try out. I’m embarrassed to say it but I had no idea that The National existed until last April. I wish I knew of them sooner because I have clearly been missing out on some great music. High Violet is one of my favorite albums of 2010 and it got me through some pretty tough nights in Potsdam when I was homesick.

Also, I think that Matt Berninger, the lead singer, is dead sexy. His wife is a lucky, lucky woman. This might sound weird but I want to recreate his look…he wore an outfit like this when he was performing in Brooklyn:

I want to see in March if a vest, a tie, and a cute button up would look as good on me as it does on him. I think we’ll make it my first outfit as soon as 30 for 30 is over.


Leave a comment

chasing your childhood dreams. doing things that scare you. and in the end, it will be worth it.

I applied to my first New York City job today. 

Maybe unemployment isn’t so bad after all. If nothing else, it makes you soul search and figure out what you really want to do. 

I would like to work. I don’t want a job that sucks my soul out each day. I want to get up every morning feeling excited that I’m about to do something that I enjoy and I’m helping to make a difference. Even more so- I want to see what I’m truly capable of. I feel like working on the campaign was just a start. I want to dig a little deeper. As I volunteer in the office, I find how much I enjoy public service and helping out the constituents. It’s so rewarding and makes me realize that I really did choose the right majors. 

There is nothing I want more in this world than be able to return to Albany and live my old life again. I miss it like crazy. I miss my friends. I miss everything I used to do there. I’ve been trying hard to get back to work there, but I haven’t found anything yet. A friend and I talked about living together and I would be thrilled to have her as my roommate. I think we’d have so much fun. My youth leadership group is there. Then reality hits me in the face. The blow stings because I would love to go to UAlbany to receive my Master’s in Public Administration and work during the day and go to school at night. I couldn’t ask for anything better- to make money and attend a top ranked school at low price. 

Yet if I can’t find a job…this can’t happen.

So…that’s why I need to look at other markets. It scares me like crazy because of course I want to go back to what’s safe and familiar to me. If I do move to NYC, DC, or Boston, I’m going to have to start all over again. That fear is what has held me back. Then, over the last couple of weeks, I’ve received some great advice- without even asking for it!

1. Skip work, find a “job” that pays you to “volunteer.”

2. You have so many friends you just haven’t met yet waiting for you in NYC!!

3. You got places to go that you’ll need help driving to.

Not to mention my dad and my aunt are extremely supportive of me moving to NYC and DC. They said it would be the best thing that could happen.

I know that things are really uncertain right now but I have faith that with my friends and family behind my back- things will fall into place.

I want to get into public service.

It’s time to make the connections.

I’m willing to work.

Because I want to make a difference.

Leave a comment

I had a weird dream last night. I dreamed that I was at my mom’s house and suddenly, I panicked because I had to get to work in Potsdam. I started freaking out because I had no idea how I would be able to get to Potsdam because it’s 6 hours away from Callicoon Center. I was so scared because I didn’t confirm my volunteers and what was I ever going to tell my boss? Then I woke up and I realized…

Wait. It’s January.

There aren’t any elections going on.

There isn’t any campaigning to do.

My contract ended. I’m unemployed.

I moved back home in November.

I came to the conclusion that my subconscious really misses working.


Leave a comment

Take Your Passion and Make It Happen: A Way to Overcome The Dismal Economy and Realize Your Dreams

Yes we can.

Yep. That’s a line from the Obama campaign but I feel that we, the unemployed and underemployed youth, can also use it to motivate ourselves. 

On Wednesday, I said that I was looking forward to yesterday because, for the first time since November 2nd, I will be in a work environment in which I will be doing something that I love.

I was right. I’m going to be a receptionist at the office and I start on Tuesday! Although it’s a volunteer position, I can’t even tell you how much I treasure this opportunity. I remembered why I love politics- because it gives me a chance to help people. I’m sure you all out there have reasons why you love your passions.

Unfortunately, with the way things are, a lot of us aren’t getting the chance to get paid to do what we love- including yours truly. I’ll be dead honest right now- I don’t know many people who graduated with me, regardless of what college they went to, who are working full time within their fields. Because of this, it is SO easy to be:

1. Discouraged

2. Frustrated

3. Depressed

IT DOESN’T NEED TO BE THAT WAY THOUGH. IT’S GOING TO TAKE A LITTLE ELBOW GREASE BUT YES WE CAN GET THROUGH THIS!

My friend, JOC, pointed me to this fabulous blog: Coming of Age in a Crap Economy. It tackles topics from Making the Best of a Shitty Job to How to Love Living at Home. It’s not written by some 45 year old self-help guru who has already made millions…it’s written by an English Literature major who graduated from the Class of 2009 who, from her bio, has yet to receive a full-time job offer. Seriously- check out that girl’s bio…she is my age (23) and has accomplished SO MUCH. Based on what she’s done- I would hire her in a heartbeat! However, just like you, me, and a lot of other people we know…she can’t get a job either.

So where am I going with this? In order to survive unemployment or underemployment…here’s a tip.

GIVE YOURSELF THE FUTURE YOU DESERVE, NOT THE ONE YOU THINK YOU’RE ENTITLED TO.

It’s been well documented that there is a growing sense of entitlement among young people today. I have certainly seen that in my classrooms.

Graduating seniors have this notion that they should be hired because of their creative brilliance. Too many are unhappy with the idea of starting at the bottom.

My advice has always been: “You ought to be thrilled you got a job in the mailroom. And when you get there, here’s what you do: Be really great at sorting mail.”

No one wants to hear someone say: “I’m not good at sorting mail because this job is beneath me.” No job should be beneath us. And if you can’t (or won’t) sort mail, where is the proof that you can do anything?

-Randy Pausch

I wish I could have had the privilege to take a class with this man. He is truly an inspiration to me, especially now. 

Simply having a degree cannot give you a job these days. Having that awesome internship cannot give you a job these days. Stop thinking because you have a degree in X and that since you have X experience that you are entitled to an awesome job.

If you sit there and whine about how things shouldn’t be this way, that you’ve worked so hard in the past, and that you’re done paying your dues…where is that going to get you? Nowhere. Why? Because you sat there whining! In this economy, throw out the notion that “you paid your dues” and “you’re entitled to a better future.” I’m pretty sure the people who had jobs for 20 years and then got laid off because of budget cuts feel that they also paid their dues and are entitled to a better future. 

Instead work towards the future you deserve. There’s a saying: God helps those who help themselves. If you’re not religious, just substitute “God” for “Life,” and it will mean the same thing. The economy may change. The job market may change. Yet from what I’ve seen- prospective employers always love someone who’s willing to take the initiative. This is your time to be creative and show what you’ve really got.

We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.

-Randy Pausch

Yes we can.

TAKE YOUR PASSION AND MAKE IT HAPPEN

Yes, that’s a line from the Flashdance theme song. Not going to lie, this is my go-to song when I’m feeling really inspired and when I want things to happen. 

I love telling this story just because it’s an example that in life, anything is possible. I feel really blessed that this happened to me because seriously- when does stuff like this happen? In April and May, I had this wonderful temporary job as a receptionist. The contract ran out though and I found myself unemployed for a second time in 2010. I didn’t let it bring me down, even with a rent check looming and bills to pay, I decided that I was going to create my own destiny. Since I couldn’t find a political job, I signed up to volunteer on a political campaign so I could get some experience in the field. I had the time of my life. I was so excited whenever my friend D asked me if I could help out. Eventually, I did get a non-political office job within the month of June. But I’ll tell you- I always looked forward to clocking out because nothing made me happier than going down to the campaign office and stuffing envelopes or making phone calls. One day while I was volunteering, my friends at the campaign did a wonderful thing for me- they forwarded my resume to campaigns who were hiring. The rest is history.

If it worked before, I’d like to see if it could work again. I decided to make Sullivan County my little Albany. I want to make this something more. Right now, I’m on unemployment and I’ll say this- I’m really thankful for the money I receive because I haven’t asked my parents to take care of my bills. They don’t deserve to take care of my burdens. While I’m on unemployment, I really want to find the job that I’ll be happy with and will give me financial security. When I score another interview, I want to show my prospective employer that I didn’t just sit down and wait for life to happen to me- that I took charge of my life and searched for opportunities within my field…even if they are volunteer positions. I’m going to contact a couple more offices tomorrow to see if I can volunteer there too! My dreams are so precious to me. I’ll do anything to make them happen.

Anyone can do this. It’s honestly as simple as making a phone call. Whether you’re unemployed or underemployed- ask yourself this question: what do you want to do as a career? When you have that figured out, look at your surroundings. Are there any local businesses around that may give you some good experience to jumpstart your career? If there are, ask if you can volunteer! Even if you’re underemployed, you can still see if you can work things out. See if something could fit in with your work schedule. Even if it means working more hours, look at it as an investment in your dreams. You could be one step closer to launching your career!

HOLD FAST TO HOPE

Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things. And no good thing ever dies.

-The Shawshank Redemption

Above all- this is the most important thing. It’s not going to be like this forever. If you feel like having a bad day, by all means, have a bad day. If you feel confused, let yourself be confused. It’s better to let yourself feel these feelings than hold them inside of you. Don’t let them take over your life though. We are still so young. We have our whole lives ahead of us. Let us not be remembered as the forgotten generation. Let us be the Greatest Generation v.2.0. After all, it wasn’t until after The Great Depression that The Greatest Generation  came about. We’re more than what our circumstances are giving us. 

We can do it.

Yes we can.

Say it louder.

Yes we can!

I still can’t hear you!

YES WE CAN!

I will leave you with this song. It always makes me optimistic.

Matt and Kim- Daylight

We cut the legs off of our pants
Threw our shoes into the ocean
Sit back and wave through the daylight
Sit back and wave through the daylight

Slip and slide on subway grates
These shoes are poor mans ice skates
Fall through like change in the daylight
Fall through like change in the daylight

I miss yellow lines in my roads
Some color on monochrome
Maybe I’ll paint them in myself
Maybe I’ll paint them in myself

These sidewalks liquid then stone
Building walls and an old pay phone
It rings like all through the daylight
It rings like all through the daylight

And in the daylight we can hitchhike to Maine
I hope that someday I’ll see without these frames
And in the daylight I don’t pick up my phone
Because in the daylight anywhere feels like home

I have five clocks in my life
And only one has the time right
I’ll just unplug it for today
I’ll just unplug it for today

Open hydrant rolled down windows
This car might make a good old boat
And float down grand street in daylight
And float down grand street in daylight

And with just half of a sunburn
New yellow lines that I earned
Step back and here comes the night time
Step back and here comes the night time

And in the daylight we can hitchhike to Maine
I hope that someday I’ll see without these frames
And in the daylight I don’t pick up my phone
Because in the daylight anywhere feels like home