Sunday, October 18, 2009

Five Little Words - Penultimate Finale

Little Ms Blogger set me up with Five Little Words some time last week, but I keep spouting from the mouth and making each word much longer than it has to be. Sorry, it's just what I do. If you want to see my take on the first three words you can look here and here. Without further ado, here are my last two words.

CAREER
I took a circuitous route to get to where I am today. When I first started college I was a French major. The thought of doing anything sciency never entered my mind. Then I  considered International Business, but I really wasn't excited about it, plus I had transferred schools and wasn't really doing all that great. If my major had been playing hooky I'd have aced it. I spent a few years going back and forth, then I got married and had a couple kids, then before I knew what was happening I was a single mom with 2 little girls. I finally got my act together with the help of a couple close friends (I've mentioned them before) and got a degree in biochem, although there isn't much you can do with a biochem degree except be a peon in a lab or go for a PhD. Throughout my long and illustrious undergraduate years I kept taking career aptitude tests and they kept coming back "pharmacist" or "speech pathologist". I always immediately dismissed pharmacy thinking I didn't want to spend my life in a grocery store. When I graduated with my biochem degree I finally decided "what the hell" and decided to go to pharmacy school. I packed up my girls and moved 1500 miles in order to be near Barb and go to school. Imagine my surprise when I got wait-listed. I was devastated. I thought maybe I was right all along and pharmacy wasn't for me. I thought I'd give the whole speech pathology thing a look and shadowed someone for a day. One day. I hated it. I remember going to Barbs and crying crying crying. She said there was nothing wrong with being a stay-at-home mom, but I wasn't married at the time. There wasn't much for an over-educated under-qualified single mom to do.
A few months later I got a phone call from the pharmacy school. I got in. I was so excited! It never occurred to me to be nervous or scared, I just did it. It wasn't easy tho. As I said, I was a single mother and in a school with a reputation of being difficult. I remember my Dad telling me that he hoped I'd stick with it. I entered as a 3rd year student, and it was a 6 year degree. So for 4 years school was pretty much my life. I did, however, find time to fall in love and get married to the man of my dreams, but I'm sure I've already told you about him.
Before I had even graduated I had a full time job at Schnucks. I loved it, and I think Schnucks is a great company to work for, but there was one problem: the hours. Most nights I wouldn't get home until 10pm, plus I had to work every-other weekend. Add to that the fact that I was newly married and had pre-teen age girls. I just needed to be home more.
There is a story about my breaking point, but I'm not going to put it here. Suffice it to say that I decided to venture out on "my own" as a free-lance pharmacist. I LOVE it. I work when I want to, I have contacts all over the area. Some weeks I work every day, sometimes I just work a day or 2 a week. I rarely work saturdays, but I will now and then to fill in for friends. I can honestly say that this is what I was meant to do. I love knowing that I'm actively helping people, and yes even saving lives. You don't think so? I'll tell you more if you want, but this is already longer than I wanted. My point is, I feel good about myself, my choices, my career.
And the best thing about it shows if you look at my profile. First I am a mother to teenage girls, then I am a wife, then I am a pharmacist.
There are some people that wish they had it all. I have it.

Tune in next time for my Ultimate fifth word :)

17 comments:

Nanodance said...

A free lance pharmacist. That sounds interesting. I think that so many of us are looking for balance in our lives and want a career that is rewarding and interesting but not all consuming. That combo is not easy. Sounds like you found it.

Beth said...

I love that you didn't have everything fall into place with your life all mapped out at the tender age of 21. Like you, I went back to school as a single mom. My priorities were amazingly different with children on the scene.

You are a real fighter! What an inspiration you are to your kids and to others.

otin said...

I love that story! The best part of it is how you ended up close to your sister! Good move, DEER! lol

Green-Eyed Momster said...

Isn't life a trip? Here's the post I did about my careers/jobs:
http://greeneyedmama.blogspot.com/2008/09/all-my-jobs.html
I just met you via Otin so I doubt if you've seen it before.

I'm glad that you are saving lives. I used to love doing that too.

Hugs!!

Brian Miller said...

saving lives is a cool gig. we each play a part. cool that you get to do it on your terms...in the order of your priority. nice.

Gaston Studio said...

Being a good role model for your teenage girls must make you very proud, as well as about your accomplishments. Never knew that pharmacists could freelance, but that's really cool that you can choose when you want to work!

Marion Williams-Bennett said...

Love this - a freelance pharmacist How perfect, making it work for you. Isn't it great to be able to look back with such wisdom.

Little Ms Blogger said...

I love what you wrote and am still hopeful that I'll find my true calling.

Looking forward to your last word.

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

The best part of happiness is finding the balance that works. You've done that and it shows in your truly happy, funny, and thoughtful posts...always great to read!

Barry said...

A free lance pharmacist! I can easily believe pharmacists save lives considering how carelessly some doctors write prescriptions.

But I want to know if pharmacists have to take a special course in reading doctor scribbles?

Optimistic Pessimist said...

sounds fantastic. i kinda want to be a stay at home mom too. guess i should probably win the lottery, huh?!

♥ Braja said...

Last sentence thoughts? "Me too." :))

Betsy said...

What a great story! I enjoyed reading it...we all have those forks in the road! So glad it's all worked out! :)

Barb said...

Surely I encouraged you to try again! Lots of people have to try more than once to get into professional schools. Anyway, I'm glad you did it. And I love you :)

Bee said...

I ADORE stories about how people find/evolve into their careers or professions.

I've never figured that one out for myself, so I envy those who know they are right where they should be. Now if only I could grant you more hours in a day . . .

B said...

I really like your story. It just shows that you don't have to decide what to do when you're 18, that you'll discover it, even if it's later.

PS. I still ahve to post about my 5 words! I'll do it soon, promise!

julochka said...

i've so been thinking about the word "career" lately and i so needed to read this. i love the order you listed who you are in...that's good stuff.