That life is ironic is no big news, but sometimes things happen in such a timing that I feel life is testing me instead. That it's questioning my choices and making me re-think my decisions.
In April last year I was offered my dream job. In another country. I had been in Sweden for 3 and half months and I did not want to move. I had decided that this was it, no more moving. I was certain of my decision and I turned the job down.
I was unemployed for all of 2016 and many times I questioned what to do with my life. I'm an educated chemist with 10 years of experience. I'm also a chemist who has nearly always been unhappy with my jobs. I wondered if I should just quit and work in a different area. Or was I just unlucky with the places and people I had worked with? These and a million other questions assaulted me for months and months. The indecision, the not knowing what to do and the pressure to pursue my happiness were almost suffocating at times. I always thought time would bring clarity but what if it didn't? I hided my anxiety behind training, school and other daily routines. It worked because I kept myself busy which at the same time relaxed my fears. As time passed things did became more clear and I decided to leave chemistry.
In the end, it was not so much of a decision but more like an admission to myself. I knew I didn't want to work on the same thing again, I was just scared of saying it out loud. I looked back at everything I have done and I chose to work with the one thing that had always make me happy: organising big conferences. It was December 2016 and I had a lot to think about and plan. The timing was perfect, as I could now speak reasonable Swedish, which would be essencial to enter the market in this area. In this way, I started 2017 with three plans.
Plan A: Look for jobs in that area.
Plan B: Arrange for an unpaid internship and get enough experience that way.
Plan C: Take a 2 year course in the area (free in Sweden), which would almost guaranty me a job at the end.
I sent numerous job applications, some spontaneous applications, emailed conference centres, registered in different help groups, etc. It really made a huge different to know what I wanted, because I got myself a goal and worked towards it. When nothing worked, probably because organising a couple of conferences and a few smaller meetings was not enough experience, I went for plan B. I arranged an internship, thinking that if I would be so good at it they would want to hire me at the end. In case that didn't work, I was already arranging translation and conversion of all my certificates and grades in order to take plan C.
All was planned. In February I got an internship. The people seemed really nice and the job easy enough. I would start in April, when my Swedish course went from 20h/week to 5h/week.
And then the phone ringed...
Hej! Do you remember that job you applied for in August last year? We want to interview you.
What job? Ah... that one... in Chemistry...
Confused and surprised, all I could think was "stupid ironic life, always testing me!"
I accepted the interview but I did not want the job. I did not want it so bad that I barely prepare the interview, reading only my application letter.
I got there and met two really nice people. They made me so comfortable that I forgot I was in an interview. The description of the job also sounded much better than what I thought. It was actually quite different from what I had before. I left the room wanting the job.
Two days later I got a call back to a second interview. But now I wanted it and I was nervous as hell! It went alright but not as well as the first. The decision would be made within a week, they said. It was only between me and one other person. As the days passed I convinced myself that it wasn't me, a self-protecting mechanism.
But it was... a week and a day after I was offered the job.
Will it make me happy? I don't know.
I surely hope it will.
This time, life showed me I was not ready to abandon my area.
But this is the last chance I'm giving it.
It's all or nothing.