I found this in my documents folder while attempting to find an old resume, on the outside chance that it is time to seek “traditional” gainful employment… but I found that I have not kept a copy. And this a pretty compelling reason not to reconstruct it, at least not as it stood in December of 2012 when I put it to rest.
Last night was the longest night of the year in the northern hemisphere. According to the astronomical calculators, the sun ended its northward apparent motion at 05:30 (UTC) and began its southern return. (Actually, of course, the sun did nothing of the sort. The earth continued to orbit the sun and we passed the point in the orbit at which the horizontal component of the axis is perpendicular to the sun. I think. You’d think I would completely understand this given my undergraduate specialization. Hope they don’t come and take my degree away… Such is the thought process of a scientist/language geek/pagan. But, I digress.)
It is a time for entering The Dark, The Dreaming. It is a time for renewal, for casting off, for preparing for the returning of the light. Is this metaphorical? Certainly. Do our metaphors impact our psyches? Undeniably. Is the time ripe for doing this work? Arguably. Do you have to believe in astrological woo-woo to read the rest of this post? No. But you can, and I will still love you. Or you can not, and I will still love you. I have beloved members of my chosen family in both camps.
Last night over the candles, my partner looked me in the eyes, and he said, “What do you bring into the dark?” And I looked down at the scrolled CV that I had placed at the center of our circle, and said, “This, I guess.” And then I said, “No. I bring the names and labels by which I have been known, for release. And I carry forward the learning I had from these experiences.”
This scroll was a gift from him in days gone by for times that I felt that I had not accomplished anything. He occasionally used it to playfully tap me on the head when I decried my lack of professional progress in recent years. My years of staying home with the children, going to work at a part-time, dead-end, not-challenging job had taken their toll on my self-image. There were days when I looked at my life and said, “Clearly this represents some truth about me.” And there were days when I looked back at my life and saw nothing but failure.
And on those days, he said to me, “Why did you leave those jobs?” And I had to admit. Those jobs made me cry. “And why,” he asked, “do you want to go back to doing a job that makes you cry?” “To prove that I could do it. To prove that I am capable. To prove that I am good enough.” And he said, “You already did that.” And bopped me with the scroll. And kissed me on the nose.
So, goodbye “Business Analyst”
So long, “Instructional Designer”
To the woods with you, “Educational Developer”, “Professor”, and “Internet Solutions Consultant” (or whatever that one was)
This CV is a reflection of a life-gone-by, a striving, exhausting life driven by external validation.
I handed him the scroll and said, “Read this.” He scanned it, mentioned a few of the things on it. “Does it say anything on there about Love?” I asked. He shook his head. “No Love.” “Passion?” I asked. He mimed looking over it again. I continued. “Exuberance? Excitement? Curiosity?” He shook his head once more. “Does this,” I said, “look like the kind of person you would want to sit down and talk to over a beer?” “Um,” he said, “Frankly? I’d be intimidated.”
“Does this,” I continued, “in any way reflect the woman that you have come to know and love?” He said, “Only through a funhouse mirror.” He looked through the scroll. “I can see your nose. Or one toe. Or one eye. But you are not in this.”
And I said, “Then it has to go.” And I declared my intention for the new year (which in my mind starts on the morning after Winter Solstice, even if I am a minority of one): I will no longer live a life in pieces. I will bring the most important parts of me to the world, in all their flawed and brilliant glory. I will cry at the drop of a hat, and talk about my children in public, and love where I see/feel fit. I will move my body for the joy of it, not to improve my visual appeal to those who would judge. I will eat healthy foods because I love myself, not as a form of denial. I will take this new name, step into my power, and stop apologizing for having not enough/too much education for whatever the situation is.
And I will never, never (in a desperate cry for approval) send this CV out into the world again.