Useless is as useless does

I’m feeling useless.  Not worthless, just useless.  I had already planned to write about my lack of use today when I happened across a post on Day of the Week Fat Pants, one of my favourite blogs.  It seems I’m not alone in this feeling today (see her post “as Crazy Does“).   Like me she is feeling somewhat useless as a result of her inability to obtain even the worst of jobs.  Sigh.

I don’t talk career on my blog, but I had one.  Really, I’ve a had a couple, but my most recent career had been my most successful.  I was an executive in corporate sales for a leading consumer packaged goods company.  When they closed 5 offices around the world July 2012, I became a convenient castoff.  (I may have mentioned I didn’t respect the president of the last company I worked my ass off for, and it may have affected her decision to close the Canadian office!).  Anyway, since then, I’ve dabbled in teaching creativity to kids and ultimately, started doing some before & after school daycare to get some bloody cash coming into the household, $15 at a time.  Sad, sad, sad.  How the mighty have fallen.

But $15 a day isn’t exactly rolling in it, you know? I have a mortgage to pay and perhaps a meal here and there would be nice.  I’ve almost got my children convinced that “grazing” is the new “full”, but judging from the snuck Freezie and cheese string wrappers I find hidden in the couch that are strictly to be kept for school lunches, I’m guessing they’re not actually buying it, they’re only humouring me but they’re still hungry.

In September, when we realized this whole daycare thing just isn’t going to cut it, I actively began applying for a job.  Any job!  Truly, I’m not picky.  I will flip burgers (cause they have machines at McDonald’s now to pour drinks and put fries in the fryer), I will smile and add another sweetener to your coffee even though you only asked for one, I will wrap your gifts with flair even though you pushed that other lady out of line, I will stand on your stupid, tiled sales floor in uncomfortable dress shoes for 8 sickening hours of saccharine holiday music, I will even spit polish your shoes before you head to that company Christmas party!  I’ll do anything!

I used to claim that I would prostitute myself before I would lose my house…and I meant it.  But, my husband just isn’t going for it.  He doesn’t care that I am willing to sacrifice my modesty and my pride so long as my kids have a roof:  “something will turn up!”.

Really?  Job searching for 79 days now, a time when everyone’s supposed to be looking for their holiday rush help, and the only response I’ve heard at all was:  “are you kidding me?  have you looked at your resume?”  Sigh.

I’m overqualified and employers think I won’t stick around.  Sigh.  I don’t know how to “dumb down” my resume as I’ve been advised to do.  Sigh.  Seriously, how do you dumb down that you were the Business Manager at one of the biggest cpg companies in the world for 7 years and then became the General Manager for the Canadian subsidiary of another for 5?  How exactly do I dumb that down?  Do I simply lie??  And now that I see that written down, I just sound so obnoxious!

And why does what I did in the past dictate what I want to do now?  Why can’t I have decided that I don’t want to be a big-wig anymore?  Is it really so hard to believe?

I harassed the girls at our local Timmies for 2 weeks, trying to speak with the manager/owner and practically begged for a job.  No go.  A person with my talents would be “wasted” here.

Come on!!  How is it a waste if I can actually smile at your customers and make them feel welcome?!  How is it a waste if I can pour coffee as well as the next girl?  Hell, better than them!  I’ll actually make it the way it was ordered!

How is it a waste if I’m sitting at home in the same clothes I’ve been wearing since Friday because I’m too depressed to even shower or do laundry and trudge back out there again with the same disheartening results today?!  What else am I going to do with my time? Play Candy Crush!?  I may as well pour your coffee and smile brightly and make proper change and at least bring home a pay cheque every two weeks!


So, I feel completely useless.  As in I am of no use.  Sigh.  The shame and the guilt of uselessness have sucked all motivation from me.  And for some reason that’s really dragging on me today more than it has been in the past.  Maybe it’s the glee our bank manager exuded while bragging he has almost finished his Christmas shopping this morning.  (I’ve only got 36 days:  will I have any money for Christmas shopping this year?)  Maybe it’s the bad mood one of the dad’s dropped his kids off with this morning and I didn’t recognize it before I teased him about being “late” (clearly I missed the signals, shit, will they stop coming now and take even my measly $15 a day from me?).  Or maybe it’s because I spent my whole weekend in bed, depressed about being useless, while my poor hubby tried to recover from actually being sick.  Sigh.

I feel like that lady in the old tv commercial for bath salts:  Calgon!  Take me away!!

Nope.  Sigh.


8 thoughts on “Useless is as useless does”

  1. Dang. That is really tough… I can’t imagine having the issue of being “overqualified” for the jobs that are available… I totally advocate for lying on your resume and downplaying your qualifications. I was turned down for a job because they thought I was too independent and ambitious for it. WTF are you kidding me? Money. I am here for money.

    1. LOL Too independent and ambitious! love it.

      Ya, I’m thinking of changing my resume to say I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for 18 years even though my oldest is only almost 13….maybe they won’t notice? 😉

      1. Haha surely not! I do know that I have sat on interview panels at my job and it’s sadly true that we will consider someone to be overqualified… I hadn’t thought about that until just now. But if they seem enthusiastic about the job we don’t usually “hold it against them.” Again, I wish you luck!

  2. Not having a job is hard. And it seems very unfair that you are turned down work for being overqualified! My thoughts are with you fingers crossed you get something!

  3. I’ve tried lying my arse off, I’ve tried being painfully honest- and I’ve settled on being very clear about my expectations and my abilities. I’ve worked enough crap jobs over the years that they should know up front- If I can’t have a little fun, you can’t pay me enough. Don’t expect me to work alone for very long, DO NOT put me in charge of anyone, and if I come running to you to diffuse a situation, know that I have done my expert-level-best to deal with it on my own already, so get on it! You’re making the “big bucks” for a reason, so back me up.
    ahhh Retail- how I love thee

    1. LOL I’m a bad liar, so I think I’ll just try for being totally clear about expectations and abilities! I wrote a new cover letter today after posting. The opening line:

      “After reviewing my resume you may be asking why I’ve applied for the open position with your company.”

      Then it goes on to talk about how my priorities have changed, blah, blah, blah. Fingers crossed it gets me an interview at least! Hope yours went well.

      1. Mine went well- seems promising. Something I’ve learned from experience, generally if they don’t think youre absolutely terrific from the get go, you probably don’t want to work there anyway. Those jobs just suck the life out of you. Doesnt really help in the face of multiple rejections, but in the end I’ve had some of the BEST jobs come to me after I’ve given up.

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