So, it's not necessarily that I have gotten this far in my life without having a job, and it also kind of is. I do the odd things like baby-sitting and pet-sitting and vacuuming somebody's house. Sometimes people will ask me to take photos or do childcare, and I was once asked to make cake pops for a birthday party. I volunteered at church a lot. I worked off lessons at the barn. I helped trained some ponies (meaning horses). But, I have never had an official job, and now I have one and I think it's the best job ever.
I am, technically speaking, a "Consultant" at the Center for Academic Excellence (writing center) at Asbury University, which, in plain English, means I help people with their writing. It is the best job for a few reasons.
The first is the experience. It's great work experience. I'm in a collaborative office space with other people and we teach and we're responsible to teach. We have responsibilities and obligations of quite a few different natures. In addition to working with students every week, I also get to teach online students, wherever in the world they may be. From a practical standpoint, it's a great first job.
The second is that it is a way I can serve other people. Not only that, but it is also in a way that I enjoy serving other people. I am joyful in the atmosphere of the writing center, and I am passionate about writing, and I like to think that translates into a better experience for whoever comes in for help.
The third is that it has forced me to grow as a person (and it's humbling, too), and it has provided me with many beautiful opportunities to learn from other people. I am supposed to be the authority on writing and papers and such, and, comparatively, I am authoritative, but I have multiple times been stumped by a sentence, grammar, structure, circumstances, and students. It has taught me to think on my feet and to try to see from another perspective. A lot of times my students won't understand things the first way I say them, which has much more to do with perception than intelligence, so I say them a different way, and however many ways it takes. All people see things differently, and, in an attempt to teach, I get to try to see things differently too. My students have also corrected me or given perspectives that I had never considered before, and they have been able to enlighten me. Besides that, they are amazing people and I am so glad to have met them just for that.
The fourth is the community. Most of you who read these things know that I am not superb with the people thing. I am terrible at making friends and talking to people and seeming like a normal person. But, for whatever reason, the staff at the writing center is an amazing group of women who love to discuss ideas, the real ones, the tough ones, the funny ones, and we help each other out with teaching techniques and with life advice. We get to have great conversations with people whom we respect daily. And I have made some excellent new friends by virtue of this being my first job.