I don’t normally post stuff like this, normally my blog is reserved for books, sometimes video games – my interests, but not me. But I need somewhere to post this and I don’t know where else.
I am really, really not happy with things as they are now. And I don’t know what to do.
Everywhere I look, people I know are getting engaged, married, having kids, buying a house, getting a promotion, working their ideal job. And I can’t help but compare myself to others, even though I know it’s completely stupid. Despite the fact that I have two degrees under my belt, plus plenty of experience within museums and archaeology, I feel like I haven’t accomplished much with my life.
I really don’t like my job. It’s boring, I can’t stand customer service for a second longer, and it’s not at all what I thought I’d be doing after completing my Master’s degree. I hate the public and how so many people treat customer service employees as though they are nothing but something on the bottom of their shoe. The way that so many people act all high and mighty around me and my colleagues, how they get angry with us over the stupidest things – and in a place that they paid absolutely NOTHING to enter, I might add. I know I only graduated last summer and it will take me a while to get on my feet, but I need something that keeps me stimulated and provides a challenge, rather than walking around the same galleries again and again, day after day after day. Sure, the museum is great. Sure, it has amazing stuff. But that painting isn’t quite so amazing once you’ve walked past it thousands of times.
I’ve been applying for other jobs. I don’t want to leave Oxford just yet, and since museum jobs are hard to come by, I’ve been looking at higher education administration. I’ve had two interviews from countless applications, one at Christ Church College in December, which went really well but went to someone else. I was, however, chosen as the reserve candidate in case the person they chose turned it down. They didn’t, and over the Christmas holidays I applied to countless more jobs. I was offered one interview, at Hertford College, this month. I went along, felt really great and confident, and was asked back for a second interview. It went so well, and I felt so good – but again, I didn’t get it. It went to someone with more experience in that particular field.
Getting so close to escaping, but not quite making it, has really gotten me down. My current job has caused a LOT of problems. I get more migraines, because I can’t just grab a glass of water when I need one. I now have a problem with my feet, which hurt all the time, regardless of whether I’m stood up or not. It’s also aggravating another medical condition of mine and all of this combined together is so overwhelming, and makes every day at work a real challenge. I wake up each morning dreading the day, knowing that it’s going to be boring, frustrating and I could possibly get ill, so add anxiety to the mix.
I’ve never, ever been one of those people who really wants to get engaged, married, have kids and all that. All I want is the museum career I’ve always dreamed of, and I’ll be happy. But I cannot believe how little difference having a MA in Museum Studies has made. For the job we do, myself and all of my colleagues are ridiculously overqualified. All we do is walk around a museum all day, giving people directions, and almost all of us have one degree, if not two. Despite the fact that the post requires no qualifications, the museum seems to only hire people with them, because it shows we have an interest. But it also means that we’re wasting our degrees.
What frustrates me even more is how difficult it is to find an entry level museum job. I spent a while today looking through museum jobs, and almost everything was either volunteer work (how would I afford to live?) or required about five years experience of PAID museum work (how do I get the experience if I can’t get a single job without it?). The only jobs I could find that were suitable for me had some ridiculous limitations – you had to be 18-24 years old (so now I’m too old) and unemployed. Which makes me wonder why I even spent all this time and money on two degrees in the first place.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful to have a job. I’m just incredibly frustrated by this field that I’ve chosen to fall in love with and set my heart on. It’s so, so difficult to progress, and it really gets me down. I feel like I’m completely stuck in a rut and won’t ever be able to get out of this monotonous job, where I can’t even save the money so I can afford to relocate for another job. It is so important to me, what I end up doing for a living. I don’t want a job that makes me feel like I’m wasting my time. I want something that I can be passionate about, that I love doing, that I know is making a difference somewhere.
Sorry for the rant, I just have to get it out somehow…