In the previous post, A Crappy Lie, I mentioned just one of the two things that irritated me on New Years Eve. This post is about the one I did not clarify.
For the first time, in a really long time, I am taking the bull by the horns and persistently working to make progress. Whether that be at work, in my writing, as a mother, friend, sister…I’m putting in the blood, sweat and tears to get where I want to be.
I am proud of that. I am proud of my two bedroom apartment, despite the use of the word “ghetto” by anyone I may know to describe my area. I am proud to provide EXCEPTIONAL customer service. I know what I am capable of. I know my strengths. And I shine in those moments of thinking quickly, multitasking and problem solving.
So what annoyed me?
A conversation in which someone referred to my job as if it were worthless, insignificant, not worthy of respect. A conversation in which I was told I “just work at a bookstore,” I “just serve coffee.”
Let me correct that statement right here and right now. I don’t JUST do ANYTHING. I do what I love with passion, conviction, ambition, integrity and enthusiasm.
Quite frankly, your tax dollars could be paying for my sons food, the apartment we live in, the medication he requires. I don’t make crazy dough. I could be on welfare swiping my WIC card at the grocery store, on your dime.
I could be hustling; selling drugs, selling my body, working under the table, scheming on guys to pay my bills. I could be doing many things I’ve witnessed all too often in my upbringing.
Instead, I work at a bookstore. I pay my taxes. I buy my groceries at discount supermarkets. I pinch my pennies. I haven’t bought myself clothes in well over 8 months. I haven’t bought a new pair of sneakers in well over 3 years. I don’t go to a salon to get pretty. I spend my spare money on my son, coupons in tow. I work diligently to help others in my workplace and diligently to help my son in my home life.
No, I’m not an accomplished writer. I simply work toward my goal of honing my craft one blog post, one revised page, one reading session at a time. I am slowly, but surely, pursuing my dream as I bust my ass to pay the bills.
Yes, I work at a book store. I serve coffee. And I am proud, no matter how much anyone wants to look down on me for my work choice, that I am making it. And at the heart of it – I like what I do.
For the first time, IN A REALLY LONG TIME, I don’t need the validation of others to tell me I’m the best at something. I may never be the best. I’m not trying to fill those shoes. I work at a bookstore. I serve coffee. I write with conviction in my words. I give every ounce I can spare to show my son that you can work to beat the odds. I work to show him that for for mommy – it’s not about being THE best but being MY best.
I work at a bookstore. I serve coffee. I am a writer. I am a mother. And I’m damn good at what I do. Period.