July 19, 2017

Rejection and the Wait for Something Better.

Well guys, once again it's time for another update of my super exciting, ever-changing life! Ha! Jokes. My life is definitely not that stimulating. In fact the exciting parts of my life seem to come in waves. And of course the rare time I actually do something fun and out of the ordinary, is the time when my co-workers don't decide to ask me what I did on my day off. Pfft. People only seem to ask me about it when it was a fun-filled day of scrubbing toilets...eating...grocery shopping...pulling out the long hairs from my vacuum cleaner head...and Netflix. Therefore making me appear to be just another run-of-the-mill-boring adult. Haha. We're all the same, aren't we?
Anyway, a couple of months ago I wrote a blog post about how I applied for a job (Click here to read)--one that I really really wanted. I experienced a very thorough interview and a high-hoped waiting process, only for it all to end with a crisply-folded rejection letter in the mail. Although your resume and qualities were impressive, we have decided to go with another candidate.Ick.

Whilst reading that letter and the few moments that followed, I was fine. OK, it's all good. Obviously this wasn't meant to be and now I can move on because God has closed this door, and now I don't have to think about it anymore!

BUT I DID. It was all I thought about for the next month. I'd been trying to ease my way out of the food industry and I thought this library job would be the PERFECT start to a new career. It's comfortably indoors, the environment is quiet, I get to wear nice clothes and do my hair every morning, be surrounded by books all day, interact with people, no more early mornings, and get paid to execute my obsession with organization! I even had the perfect Instagram bio already written out in my head: "librarian by day, baker by night". (LOL, not really.) Sigh. But those words of rejection stung, and of course I took it all a little personal.

God, am I not meant for something more? Is this my lot in life? To work at a job I'm unhappy at, one that makes me both mentally AND physically exhausted every single day? Am I no better than this?
I knew the answer to those questions, I really did. It's just sometimes even though you know the answer to something that has already been ingrained in your mind, you like for it to be affirmed. There is appreciation in affirmation. Take my best friend(s) for example. I know we're best friends, I know we're really close, but I still like for them to tell me that we're besties and that they're thankful for me (and vice versa of course!). My marriage with Jarryd is also a key example. Even though we told one another we love each other years ago, and on our wedding day--I still need to hear it from Jarryd that he loves me, and he needs to hear it from me. It's affirming and encouraging. It's just plain old NICE, right?!

The same goes for God. Sometimes I need Him to tell me things through the Holy Spirit and Bible-reading, or listening to worship music that "I already know", like that:
I'm worthy (Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows. -Luke 12:6-7).
I'm loved (But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. -Romans 5:8).
And on and on and on.

So, I persevered and lived past that rejection letter with a few tears every now and then. I woke up in the morning, went to work, and did it all over again for two or so more months. During this time I kept my eyes open for jobs, I even kept checking the library's employment page every single day, just in case the candidate they decided to go with no longer worked out. Long shot wishful thinking, I know.

Finding a new job wasn't so much about getting away from the one I was at only to be rid of the food industry, no. I wanted a job where I felt like I was making a difference and building relationships. My INFJ personality type LONGS for this--to feel needed, like I'm helping someone out there. I didn't feel like I was helping anyone at my current job, in fact I felt so disconnected from the world it was truly draining me. I've always had a huge heart for the elderly, and even more so over the past couple of months as Jarryd's grandparents passed away within 8 weeks of one another. I decided to look into dietary aide positions at nursing homes, because I wanted a job where I could interact with the residents. After applying to one that was part-time (what I wanted!) and perfect hours (10 am to 4 pm!) two days later I got a phone call requesting an interview with me!

Hi Jennifer, we received your application for Dietary Aide and would love to have you come in for an interview. Although, I see on your resume you have substantial cooking experience. Did you know we're hiring for a full-time Cook position?
("We see you have cooking experience", sigh...I have a feeling this is going to be a pattern for the rest of my job-applying life. Oh, you want to become an oil driller? But you have all of this cooking experience, and we need a cook, so fat-chance! You're gonna be a chef forever.) I explained my situation, how I wanted the dietary aide position because I wanted to interact with residents more, and the part-time hours appealed to me.
I understand. Well, if you were to get hired for the Cook position, with your experience your hourly rate of pay would be ____.
DING DING! Yes, the number was quite a bit higher than what I was currently making, and way higher than what the dietary aide position would have paid me. Was I was throwing up hundreds of dollar bills in the air in my mind? Yeah, so what? Yes, the money enticed me, OK?! I'm human after all. My verbal response: "That certainly changes things--when can I come in for an interview?"

So technically this interview was for both positions, since I was still on the fence. Wanna know the funny part though? When I arrived at the interview I realized this wasn't a nursing home. You know the kind that's practically a hospital? Where food gets chopped, diced, and pureed and served on trays to residents rooms? THIS WAS DEFINITELY NOT IT. This was inside a beautiful, brand new three-story building, with a shiny stainless steel kitchen overlooking a huge cushy-seated dining room, with fireplaces and all. It's a fancy restaurant for independent-living seniors! And apparently "Dietary Aide" is just another name for a "waiter/waitress"--the moment I found this out I immediately dropped the thought of ever working that position. (I was a waitress once when I was 16, and never again.)

After interviewing for the cook position, I drove home with the radio silent, deep into my own rapid thoughts, creating a pro and con list in my head.
This isn't what I was expecting! I was expecting to work in a nursing home where I could spend time with the elderly.
It's a cooking position...I thought I was done with the food industry...
The pay is excellent though, and it would really help Jarryd and I save up!
There's some prep, but there's also a bit of cooking on-the-line though, I'm not cut out for that. I wanted something less stressful and less exhausting, not MORE.
Location is great, which makes for a convenient commute.
There's benefits and it's full-time. No more 5 am mornings, the hours are so ideal for me.

Not gonna lie, after returning home from that interview I laid on the couch for a while and shed a few tears. They still had two more people to interview so it's not like they were absolutely offering me the job, but if they were to, it'd be the first time starting a job I wasn't excited for. This might be normal for some people in the "real world", to apply to jobs they didn't want with their whole heart, but this was a first for me. Normally I'm over-the-moon excited to start a new job but this prospect felt more like an obligation than an opportunity. I told myself to simmer down (hehe, cook talk), since it's not like they'd even chosen me yet. I could be worrying about nothing for all I know!

Aaaaaaand a little over a week later, Jennifer, we'd like to offer you the position! Oh boy. And what did I say? Yes, I'll take it. I said it without any hesitation too. I can't describe it, but I felt total peace about the whole thing. I'm not 100% sure if this is true for every circumstance, but sometimes I think that when a situation goes totally smoothly that it's exactly what God wanted for me. For example, I didn't even go searching for this particular position, it pretty much came to me. The timing of finding this job was absolutely perfect, and then with how everything went with me giving my two weeks notice at my then-current job, and how two days later they found someone incredible to replace me was phenomenal! It made the transition of leaving work so smooth. I just feel like it was affirmation from God that I made the right choice to accept my new job.

So here we are now! I've been at my new job for just over a month now and I don't LOVE it per say. It's not my dream job. BUT I do like it, and I do enjoy it much more than my previous job. I love waking up in the morning whenever I want to, slowly rolling out of bed with the sun shining through my windows and making myself a nice hot breakfast. Those morning hours spent with my cup of coffee and bagel in glorious solitude before the work day begins is the actual highlight of my day.
I love that I'm learning so much here about cooking, plating, and baking--YEAH we actually bake here! (I baked six beautiful Peach Frangipane Tarts the other day!) And I appreciate how everything is made from scratch, it feels good to take pride in where I work.
Oh and get this: this job is way less stressful and easier than my previous job. Yep. I go home every evening and actually feel like I can still be on my feet and get things done!
And the best part is that I get my glorious 8 hours of sleep every night and am so stinkin' proud of it. I don't even care if it offends others, but I am savouring this season of my married life where I CAN get ample amounts of sleep. Trust me, Lord willing, I know it's not gonna be this restful forever.

This season of job transitioning has taught me some big things:
1) He closes doors for a reason, because there's something better out there for us. I'm not even going to act like I know God's plan throughout all of this, but I feel like He closed the door to that not-so-high-paying part-time library job because He knew we wouldn't have been able to survive financially in that circumstance. Especially seeing how Jarryd and I still have some debt to pay off, we have some big things we need to save for, I refuse to stick to any grocery budget (because buying good food is my weakness), AND I'm about to replace all four tires on my car next week. Gah!

2) God hears our prayers and answers them in His own way. You don't even know how many times on my 5 am commute to work I prayed out to God just so tired, "please, get me out of this. Please provide a way out of this job for me." (Sure, I'll admit it, I'm a total mess when I don't get enough sleep for a year and a half.) And He did, not in my desired timing, but in HIS perfect timing. He heard my plea for sleep at night and a different work environment and now I have it.

3) TRUST in God's plans for you and His strength in you. This job was never one that I had in mind for myself, I mean, I didn't go looking for it in the least--it practically fell into my lap! I never thought I could be a line-cook. I literally imagined myself falling to pieces and crying my eyes out every day because I was so scared of it. But as I've expressed to my boss/executive chef, I have seriously surprised myself. I didn't think I was capable of this, but I am!! And let's take note of the fact that I haven't cried at work once yet! I've kept my composure and kept my cool thanks to Jesus' strength in me!

Sure, I may have pictured this summer and on to look a little different: me working part-time at the library and then part-time baking cakes at home, and super-duper part-time cleaning houses for friends. But God had other things in mind for me. Thankfully I now feel more awake and alive than ever (thanks to sleep) and a less exhausting work load to function outside of work. A.K.A- I can still make time for baking!

In conclusion, rejection isn't the end-all be-all. It's not the end of you/of us! It's simply the discontinuance of a situation or potential opportunity. Think of how many opportunities a person gets in their lifetime! SO MANY! This current season of rejection that you may be in, is just that, a season. And when it's weighed on the scale of eternity, it's a mere vapour. A breath. A mist. A 1/100000th of your life.
Take rejection as a chance to make a conscious decision to move on and seek other opportunities. You honestly have no idea what God has in store for your life.

"And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28.

"The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps." Proverbs 16:9.

"Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD!" Psalm 27:14.

"But as it is written, 'What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who live Him." 1 Corinthians 2:9.

"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;..." Ecclesiastes 3:1-22


  1. I just picture you cooking for the "Thanksgiving Special" side of Gordon Ramsay. You know? Where he's all nice and friendly and just wants you to succeed. Haha totally opposite of the "Hell's Kitchen" side of Gordon Ramsay. That's the image I have in my head and I'm going to stick with it.

    1. I love that side of him!! Or the Masterchef Junior side! Haha! He's the best!!

  2. Just finished reading this this morning with my morning coffee :) I love your honesty here. Not always the 'perfect' outcomes but we carry on, one step ahead of the other. I hope this chapter is kind to you!