I’m in the doldrums. Not that I got far out of them before I fell back in.

I’m here at my dad’s house, watching my brothers. David goes back to school tomorrow. He’s in sixth grade, at a special advanced school. He’ll be taking algebra I and Latin. My eleven-year-old brother is going to know Latin, and by the time he gets in high school, he’ll probably take more math than I ever did. Man, that just makes me feel stupid. At least I can make my own peanut butter and jelly sandwich and can remember to flush the toilet, but that’s not saying much. We don’t get along like we used to, and I feel bad about that, but David has had this recent habit of acting like a teenager and thinking the world revolves around him and he can do no wrong. He doesn’t listen. This morning, I told him to take the dog out front so he could relieve himself while I was getting breakfast together. When it was ready, I thought, “Well, it doesn’t take the dog that long, so I wonder how things are going.” I looked out the front door and couldn’t find David and Jock. I panicked. I ran out to the driveway and saw that David was a few houses down, near the bus stop. I yelled for him to come back. He said that he thought the dog could use a walk. That might have been a good idea, but only with someone else to accompany him. He has no concept of “Stranger Danger,” and that’s worrisome.

I want to get along with David, but sometimes it is hard. We still have some good moments, though. The other day, I went upstairs and couldn’t find him anywhere. I called his name, and he didn’t answer. I eventually found him sitting in the empty master bathroom tub, reading the iPad, and listening to the radio with the door shut. Kids are so odd sometimes.

Alex is going to be in third grade. He doesn’t start until next Wednesday, though. He’s very into Harry Potter now, which I like, but it’s more of the movie and Lego ties that he likes, not the books – which makes me sad. Oh well. He’s still freakin’ adorable. The other night, we were watching the end of Spaceballs before bed, and he was wearing Harry Potter robes. I went upstairs to get my laptop, and he said, “When you come downstairs and my hood is up, pretend I’m invisible!” It made me laugh so much.

Besides watching my brothers, I’ve been reading, exercising, writing, knitting, and job searching. Basically, the same things I do when I live with Mom. I have been exercising more, though, and it makes me feel good. I’ll probably do it after I finish writing this. With reading, I recently finished Bel Canto, which I think is probably my new favorite book (My apologies to The Historian – You can be my runner-up, though!). I finished it on Sunday, and there was this deep sadness within me; I wanted to read more, and yet, I knew that there was no more. I felt for the characters, and I was moved by the beautiful writing. I wish I could write like that. I’m re-reading The Sparrow now. I read it back in high school, a while ago. I don’t remember much of it, except for little parts. I found a copy of the book when I visited Jennifer in Bloomington once. There was a cool used bookstore there. Anyway, it’s interesting, but I think it’s harder to get into than the last book.

I’m currently knitting a pair of socks right now for the boy. It’s a easy, beautiful pattern, and I love the yarn, but I think I’m going to run out. I should probably buy some more. I might just get some more for myself. Books and yarn – those are my biggest vices.

As for job searching, it’s a bust. I got a call Friday about a position I applied to two months ago. I happened to be driving to my grandparents’ house at the time. I called back and left a message for the woman, but she was out of the office for the weekend. She called on Monday, completely ignoring the fact that I had stated in the message that I wouldn’t be back until the 17th. She wanted me to set up an interview for Tuesday. When I explained that I was out of state, she immediately said, “Well, it’s been nice speaking to you.” I understand that most people prefer an in-person interview to a phone interview, and for good reason. I just wish that I could have been given a chance. What if this was a family emergency? I hate that so many recruiters/employers want people to be so desperate that they’ll drop everything for an interview. Yes, I want a job, I really need one, but sometimes there are circumstances beyond my control.

Additionally, last week I had an preliminary interview for a teaching position in Japan. Because of my hellish student teaching experience, I would rather teach in a country that respects education and educators instead of America. I was worried, though, about going abroad for a year, being completely alone in a foreign country.  I know that I would miss Alex and my family considerably. I also wasn’t sure if the start-up costs (I would have to pay for my own flight over to Japan, my background check, and some other things before I actually received a stipend.). Well, now I don’t have to choose. I got an e-mail last night. They don’t want me.

Nobody wants me. It feels like the time before I found my job at the library, only worse. I have little experience, I have little references, and who really wants an English major, anymore? I keep seeing and hearing about my friends who are getting jobs or, in the case of my teaching friends, getting ready to teach their first class. My other friends still in school are getting their schedules, moving back to the dorms, or starting grad school. I just feel like everyone knows what they’re doing with their life but me.

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