As many of you know, the employment situation in grad school is less than ideal. FAR LESS than ideal. At the close of school last semester, I firmly decided that I would take out no more student loans to pay for my living expenses. I would still take out the amount needed to pay tuition, but that is it. Nada mas. Obviously this decision put me in a bit of a bind. I needed to find both employment for the summer and long-term employment for the school year ... that would also let me study for comps and write my diss.
I've been praying on this one hard since about April. I haven't asked for a specific outcome but just an outcome in general. Any kind of resolution was what I wanted. Something that paid enough to live on. And had decent benefits. I tried not to be demanding. I still put out applications and followed up with potential job leads, but I put my faith in God that He would lead me along the path that was right.
Today, God, in all His magnificent majesty, answered my prayers. Ann Taylor offered me a part-time management position, working between 18 and 25 hours per week, at a decent pay rate, with benefits. Of course, I gladly accepted. I had previously rejected their offer for full-time management because I knew it would be far too time and energy consuming. But I feel good about this offer and the situation I am in. I will continue to work for the Athletic Department at UNCG, but, unfortunately, I will have to cease working regularly with Joe-Joe. This I the hardest part of my decision. I love being a part of their family, and they mean ever so much to me. But circumstances have forced this change. I cannot continue to work with Joe-Joe and survive. Literally. Unless I go into double the student-loan debt I already have. I feel confident that this is the path that God wants me to follow, wherever it may lead. While it does mean parting ways with my North Carolina family, I'm sure that there is a reason for this. I plan to keep in touch with them and babysit every once in a while and all that. I just won't see them every day.
Going home at Christmastime for a week or two straight will also cease. There's no way that the demands of retail will allow that. But I'm okay with that. While I love my family and being home with them, sacrifices must be made to get through grad school an to achieve my goals. There is plenty of time in the future to be with them. Perhaps this is God's way of showing me the value of family and how to appreciate them. By taking them away at essential times, I will learn to appreciate them more. I think it will also allow me to really start my life on my own. Spending the holidays without my family will truly be a test, but it will allow me to grow and blossom as an individual.
Whatever God's plan is, I accept it and eagerly step forward onto His path.