OK, it's not a fabulous one. It's part time, phone sales, at night. But still, I'm ecstatic. So, let the shout-outs commence, in no particular order:
To my landlord: I was scared to death to tell you that both my boyfriend and I had lost our jobs. You responded by saying that it was tough for everyone right now and to pay when we could. You know, my credit card people, the utility provider and the bank who financed my car could give a shit about me. So it was nice having one less thing to worry about. Also, for the washer last week, which put an end to about six months worth of stupid washer drama.
To my friends at the Amherst Museum and in ECHF: You hear horror stories about people losing their jobs and all of their professional acquaintances, too. They decide that it's professional suicide to be associated with you. They side with your ex-employer over you, or they just look at you and see their own worst fears and avoid you. You guys did the opposite. You pushed me to get more involved. You kept me informed about job leads. You encouraged me to write for our newsletter, get involved with the annual meeting, and head up the White Glove Brigade. You gave me something meaningful to do. Sometimes, I really had to scrape up the $15 for dinner at the meeting, but it was always, always worth it. You guys are awesome and deserve everything you had and more. I can never thank any of you enough.
To the Girl Scouts of Western New York: Chairing this committee has been harrowing at times, but it, too, got me out of the house and gave me something meaningful to do. When I went to the IMLS conference, I felt a heckuva lot more confident approaching people than I would have if I'd had to tell them I was completely out of the field. I'm looking forward to continuing to try to make an impact.
To all of my WoW friends on Trollbane-US, especially those in the guild Dragoneers and formerly of the guild LastRites: I'll never know much about most of your real lives. I don't even know most of your real first names, but know you by names like Zyggynz, Illuminae, and Medesse. You guys probably don't know, either, that I've been looking for a job for what feels like forever and getting very discouraged at times. It was a comfort to always know that the game, and my friends in the game, were there for me. Sometimes, it was virtually the only form of entertainment I could afford. And sometimes, getting that holiday event achievement or rounding out my tier gear was the only thing I managed to accomplish all week. It always feels good to "hang out" with you guys in the game.
To David Clem, Niki Thomas, Tess Frazier and Kathy Leacock: You guys offered to help me get jobs in your companies/organizations. The fact that all of them wound up not working out, getting put on hold, etc. doesn't diminish the fact that all year, you were the only ones that gave me concrete leads. I'll always appreciate it, and I'll always look for a way to pay you back.
To my aunt: You randomly called me this winter and asked me out to lunch at a time when I felt like the entire world wanted nothing to do with me. It was a great lunch, and really cheered me up. Now that I have a source of income, I'm going to take you to lunch!!!
To the rest of my extended family: Seeing you guys last month for the first time in years really energized me. You know, when you're unemployed, most people hound the shit out of you. Everyone not in your situation seems to have all the answers. You guys weren't like that at all. You let me know that you loved me and wished me the best without any of the implied put-downs. And in the weeks after that wedding, I applied to like twenty jobs, including the one I just got, and you were at least part of the reason.
To my parents: Where to start. For all of the emotional support, all of the financial support, all of the encouragement. For paying for me to come visit you in Florida this winter and not mentioning a word about looking for a job the entire time. For getting me out of the house, for always cheering me up, I can never thank you enough.
To my boyfriend: You were so understanding and encouraging this whole time, even when you were feeling frustrated and discouraged with your own situation. It's been a rocky year. Looking forward to it being better -- together.
Finally, to you, the readers of this blog: Thanks for coming! I hope you've enjoyed reading what I have to say and hanging out in my own little corner of the internet. I know that every day, I have my own "blog rounds". So, if I'm part of yours, thank you for the time you spend with me, on however regular a basis you drop in. It kept me going, too.