It’s officially been a year since my adventures as Zippy the Elf. I thought it was about time I updated the world as to how things eventually worked out.
I’m employed! And have been since February 1, 2010! Just as I predicted, if I was able to survive December 09’ I’d be able to look forward to a bright new year. And boy, did I ever…
As soon as I wrapped up my Elf days and took on the New Year, I dived straight into interview after interview until I received an official job offer on January 28th. I was shaking. I went by myself to the Mexican restaurant across the street from my apartment and ordered the biggest margarita I could. For the past 10 months I have been employed by a fabulous network where the motto is “Live Out Loud.” I’m proud. I’m thankful. I’m happy.
I was unemployed for 8 long months filled with uncertainty and doubt. Looking back I think the thing that I am most bitter about is that I really lost myself in there. For 8 months I was crippled with despair, heartbreak, and grew far too familiar with rejection. You never think it’s going to happen to you and then it does. Out of nowhere your world is completely rocked. I let unemployment control me. I let it define me. Until I had the genius idea of dancing around as an elf the 12th month of the year to get my mind off things. And it helped.
I needed Zippy. She had a blast. She’d dance to Christmas songs standing atop huge wrapped gifts on display, direct people through the build-a-bear-forest, chit-chat about reindeer games with her fellow elves, pose for hundreds, possibly thousands of pictures with complete strangers, have babies thrust in her arms, have heart-to-hearts with Santa, eat dozens of cookies backstage when she had a moment off, take pictures of families with the big guy, and really, really found a way to soak up the Christmas spirit. Unemployment definitely affected me negatively. But it wasn’t going to take Christmas away from me!
Get your mind off being unemployed. You are your own worst enemy and your own mind can and will drive you insane. Do something that makes you feel like YOU. If you aren’t able to dress up like Christmas threw up all over you and act like a crazy nut at Macy’s, take a class, volunteer, become a gym addict, get away for a few weeks. Just get out there and remember that you are sooooo much more than unemployment. Don’t let it define you. Don’t lose yourself.
There IS a light at the end of the tunnel and it’s SO BRIGHT! It’s blinding! Just breathe. People used to tell me this and I’d tell them to F off. You don’t want to hear it because it seems unfathomable to think you’ll ever make it out alive. You just…you gotta know that everything is going to be all right.
Stop by Santaland on 34th. Tell St. Nick you want a job. (Tons of people did – including myself)
Fall down 7 times, get up 8.
This too shall pass.
PS: I’ve received a bunch of really sweet emails and would love to continue to hear from you – especially if you are looking for advice, or have suggestions on other things I can write about! Keep your head up!