Friday, July 16, 2010

A Working Realization

I love the game Scrabble. The picture above was taken at a bar in Columbia during my friend's 22nd birthday celebration. My friends and I really know how to party. The word "money" was spelled during this game, which has been on my mind a lot lately with support raising and all that jazz. Money reminds me of having a job, and the word job reminds me of all of my past work experience.

I had my first real job when I was sixteen years old. It was at a factory in Peculiar, MO called Sioux Chief Plumbing Manufacturing and I was in the shipping department. I spent every minute of every forty hours a week picking up boxes of plumbing parts, throwing them onto pallet jacks, and consolidating them so they could be transported to their final destination. Sometimes if it was a really slow day, I would spend several hours in a row cutting plastic off boxes with a box cutter while the hum of the warehouse fans seemed to move the heat from one place to the other rather than make it any cooler.

Needless to say, while I was grateful for the paycheck, I despised the monotony of the job.

1. Grab pallet jack
2. Find routing number
3. Pick up box
4. Place box on pallet jack
5. Repeat until the world ceases to be interesting times eighty

I would scribble poetry on the back of shipping orders, cut huge letters in the plastic-covered boxes as if I were Zorro, and find other ways to try and keep my mind from accepting the fact that it truly was mindless work. Once, I had to pick up some parts that were rarely ordered located in the back of the factory. The boxes were on a shelf that was so close to the wall that there was barely enough room for this 5'1" Asian to squeeze into. As I unamusedly stared at the tiny space, I saw spider webs woven all over the place between the boxes and the wall. Unoccupied spider webs are cool with me, but these webs had no vacancy signs. The disgusting creatures had extra long legs that seemed to double dog dare me to try and get back to where my box orders sat. I literally had to walk away and give myself a pep talk before I could brave the spider territory. It was sick...but it helped keep things interesting.

Now, I can see how my experience at a job that I wasn't very passionate about helped shape my decision to find something I was passionate about. Yet, even that road was a long and winding one.

I've had other jobs since my Sioux Chief stunt.

*I sacked groceries at Hy-Vee and would retrieve carts when the managers were feeling extra evil. In the winter, I was terrified the entire time trying to push carts back into the grocery store, anticipating the moment when the ice would cause me to slip and run the carts into somebody's brand spankin' new car or something.
*I completed two internships at law firms: one in downtown Kansas City for two hotshot, young lawyers looking for free labor and the other for the Cass County Prosecuting Attorney's office (which was a delight in comparison).
*I was a waitress at Partner's restaurant in Harrisonville for a long time, filing away memories in my mind vaguely reminiscent of the movie "Waiting." My friend and I would frequently get mistaken for siblings, despite the fact that he's Korean and I'm Filipino.
*And of course, my latest job was at The Intersection after-school program, which served underprivileged youth in the Columbia area. I can write a book about my experiences there. Those kids forever changed me.

I bring up my past occupations because I'm struggling with support raising. I'm used to working for a paycheck and having a stringent schedule of tasks to complete during my work times. For years I have been a multi-tasker, going from school to work to practice to whatever craziness I was involved in at the time, thriving on the business. Now, support raising has been my job and I have yet to learn how to embrace the process. Iknow that I am in the perfect position to be obedient to God and to trust in His perfect provision, but since I haven't seen results, I've already started losing motivation. Sometimes I think it would be EASIER to just get a job like normal college graduates do...why did I have to take such a radical road? However, if I wasn't obedient, I would be ignoring a call that I know I have.

Again, I trust you God. I trust you God. I trust you God. Even when it's hard. I trust you God.

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