whooooosh went the wind. then it went away.

A flurry of emails through Wednesday afternoon.

Excitement (mine) at the prospect of actually writing for a living, a FT job with benefits! {Last time I had those: 2002-04}

On her end, urgency bleeds through her emails. It’s palpable. They’re expanding. Need to hire two writers ASAP — but the right people, says the editor. She’s making one offer, possibly two, by end of week (Friday-yesterday).

Last contact from her: 10:22 p.m. Wednesday. Asking: Do you have a trip to the Valley planned? (valley = metro Phoenix).

I don’t. But I don’t say that. I write that I can be there Friday. {Remember, it’s now late Wednesday night; I can be there in like 36 hours}. Or Sunday. Monday.

I don’t hear back. Hmmmmm.

Next day, Thursday, I resend with an update. I can be there tomorrow. Or Sunday. Or any day except Tuesday next week.

Still nothing.

She’s the editor. A very busy woman. In the throes of interviewing and hiring. Undoubtedly swamped with emails.

I resend my availability with a different subject line (Valley Visit) to catch her attention in that plethora of emails. To let her know I’m available to travel to Phoenix {about a 3-hour drive, easily more depending on traffic} and interview at her earliest convenience.

Nothing.

My excitement crescendoes, then crashes onto the shore like an enormous wave.

She’s not responding. Despite my eager position poised at the starting block, ready for the race, for the starting gun to fire … I hear nothing. Except “False start. Everybody go home.”

My head hangs in disappointment. Disappointment I know all too well.

When will I catch a break? When will life work for rather than against me? Why is it that no matter what I do that’s right, ardent, sincere, genuine efforts, the party leaves the room.  I’m left standing in the room alone. Holding the bag, metaphorically. Asking myself what’s so wrong with me that I can’t get ahead.

It’s unfortunate I don’t have the alcoholic genes, I’ve mused often. Now would be a good time to feed those genes.

That’s where it’s at today, Saturday, August 13.

A rush of tremendous excitement: gone flat
Joy: fleeting
Dreaming of better in work, money, establishing a life foundation: pffffffffft, pinprick to a balloon

Doesn’t mean she won’t call one day. Doesn’t mean that media company won’t find itself needing a new writer if expansion continues.

Doesn’t mean I’ll quit looking for a writing or radio job in my state.

Doesn’t mean that I’m gonna die washing dishes for roughly minimum wage. Referencing a local job offer that I’ve gotta take now that the Phoenix writing position’s off the table.

I wanted so much better when I was younger. I want so much better, now especially, at 59, I roll into the so-called golden years, woefully unprepared for retirement or end of life.

I might well end up that 70-year-old lady behind the cash register at Taco Bell! Taco Bell, Walmart too, hire a lot of seniors — fantastic!

Funny (not hahah funny), you’d think after decades of disappointments, strident efforts made that go down in defeat, usually by others’ decisions, you’d think I’d be used to it. That disappointments would roll off like water off a duck’s back.

But it’s not like that. Not even a little. I take disappointments to heart. Often to soul. Left unattended, they could destroy me or my life even more so than suppressed rage and pain.

Weird, huh.

Also weird. A short three days ago, I wrote how fast things can change!

The whoosh of excitement. Of potential. That genuine rush of blood to the head, to quote Coldplay.

And change they did.

That POP! when a bottlecap’s lifted off the Coke bottle. Effervescent bubbles. Fizz. Ahhhhhhh!

Then you sip and discover the Coke’s flat. Or perhaps it’s not even Coke but Pepsi!

In closing …

Disappointment.

And gratitude that the editor responded to me at all. {very rarely happens!}

Nothing more to say; one philosophical question does spring to mind: If you give up on life, does life give up on you? I wonder.

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Dreams, disappointment and pour me a double

I’d like to spend the next two days drunk.

Not fall down puke your guts out pass out drunk. Comfortably even-keeled inebriated. Enough to dull the pain and soften the anguish and forget for a while.

I dared to hope. Dared to dream. I dared to be positive and think positive and affirm. I dared to be excited about possibilities for a better life and real potential for one. I dared to reach for a star. Not the brightest one perhaps in all of the universe yet bright, indeed.

What a fucking mistake.

Comfortably drunk is good because it takes the edge off. The raw edge of disappointment. Of optimism and hopes raised then crashed to the floor.

I felt the tears rise when he told me the answer was no, I am not getting the job. Because I was there in person and he too in the hallway of the radio station, I could not hide behind the veil of a telephone call. I did not want to be teary-eyed in front of him. So I dried them by will, shut them down for then.

I came close so close. Had a former employee not returned early from a leave, and thus the job going to him, I might very likely be shedding my current job and on my way to work that excites me. Is a passion and a calling and purposeful.

I’d like to be drunk for the next two days. Because today, after several days of being high on hope and the potential for happiness and a REAL POSITIVE CHANGE in my life and work, today I resume a job that means nothing to me, save for a means of survival and barely that at a part-time minimum-wage status.

Today, after days of being fueled by a dream, I resume slogging through my day, doing a job of a 22-year-old at 57, hurting my injured shoulder, aggravating my misaligned and stress-filled back, pushing myself past natural limits into exhaustion for the sake of the clock and management dictates that room cleans are to be completed in x-minutes.

Today I resume how things have been for the past 10 years, excepting three darkest years of unemployment and six months of a writing job at a small-town paper. Doing nothing I care about outside of my work ethics, getting paid crumbs to do it and inside crying, screaming, begging, pleading, yearning and reaching for release.

Praying and affirming and hoping and praying and affirming and hoping again through my days and evenings for a chance. For someone to give me an opportunity, for a door to open that’ll put me back on purpose and path. Years and years like that.

And I’ve done that. Oh yes, I have. The praying, the staying positive and being positive, the writing, the affirming, the reaching for the light and staying focused on the light even as shit surrounds me.

I’ve done that in real ways, committed ways, with dedication and diligence, steadfastly and undeterred by all the elements that bring me down or could bring me down.

And so when the answer was no — again — for the second time with this specific station and the thousandth time in efforts for jobs desired and not-so-much desired. I crashed.

Well, no I didn’t. I went into a ballistic tailspin. A spin fueled by years and years and years of disappointments. Of best intentions and sincere loving intentions met by slammed doors and towering brick walls. By NO. A spin fueled by years and years of reaching for something … better … and closer to my heart.

If it weren’t for the fact that I’ve gotta go now and fall back onto my knees to scrub bathroom floors and toilets and tuck in sheets and comforters … to strip sheets and pillowcases off king-sized beds and empty trashcans and dust every surface and don’t forget inside the fridges and microwaves …

… if it weren’t for the fact that I’ve gotta go now and trot — not walk — here to there and back here in the heat and force force force my shoulder past constrictive pain to accomplish the tasks …

… if it weren’t for the fact that I’ve gotta go be something I’m not and pretend that I’m nobody except a cleaner … if it weren’t for the fact that my dreams, only freshly resurrected from the despicable ashes of Tacoma and Washington state, are wrought in their tender infancy yet again to nothing …

if it weren’t for all that and the all-important overriding fact that I need a job — a job a job it’s a job — I’d spend the next two days drunk. Comfortably inebriated. Just enough to take the edge off, dull the pain and the anguish of another disappointment, a meaningful disappointment, and my fucking mistake of daring to hope and to dream.