6.11.2017

When Life Gives You Lemons, You Build a Lemonade Stand and Profit



Have you ever wondered what it would be like to actually wake up every morning, completely happy and excited about what you do in life? To never have to endure settling for "temporary" mediocrity to reach what you truly desire. Passing time until time finds you fit and gives you what you actually want. Some people are actually blessed enough to experience that feeling. The rest of us? We're still putting the pieces together, slowly but surely. We're getting there.

I'm patiently waiting for my moment, just like everyone else I know. I'm definitely not one of the people who immediately started doing what they love or set out to do after my college graduation. I will admit that I've struggled in the process of trying to get to that place and by no means is it my fault. I've tried endlessly, I mean what more can you do while trying to get experience and no one wants to give you the experience you need?

Find a job that passes time in hopes your dream job comes along the way.

I had one of those jobs... and the dream opportunity NEVER came my way. I mean, I had a nice setup, but nothing compared to what I truly wanted to do. It was close though. It was a move in the right direction.

Fast forward some time.. and the path is getting a little stale. I'm the kind of person who absolutely hates feeling boxed in or stagnant. I need to feel like I'm in steady movements forward in progress. When I tell you I felt stuck, it doesn't even bring justice to how horrible I felt. To top it off, I didn't even like the main job I was in.

ROLL IN THE DEPRESSION. *drum roll please*

Not even joking with you, I was completely and utterly depressed. I haven't really shared this information with anyone except my family, best friend, and boyfriend. So, you're getting this story real and completely raw. Completely open.

Post-college depression is real. I didn't even feel like my confident, outgoing and happy self. I completely changed as a person. It was rough. I cried almost every day, hid it well from some, but those closest to me got the best of my meltdowns. I was unhappy. Not unhappy from anyone in my life, but unhappy how my life was playing out. I felt like I wasn't doing crap but wasting time at a job I didn't even want to work at. Then what made things a little bit worse was that I was applying to jobs in my desired field literally EVERY.DAY. I can't even tell you how many I applied for but, trust it was enough to cause a headache. I could see myself feeling a little better if I got contacted by at least a couple of the companies I applied to, but nothing. Absolutely nothing. Zero. Nada.

So you can imagine my depression just worsening and growing deeper.

Here I was, fresh out of college, young, living in Los Angeles, California. One of the most sought after cities that sit on the glory of success... and struggling to even get an interview for something I spent four years studying. I dealt with this for almost two years. It was so easy for everyone else to tell me "just quit and get another job". It's easy, yes. However, complex.

I could have certainly quit and got another job, but I would have found myself

1. Still depressed
2. Still unhappy
3. Still searching for something else

In my eyes, there was no point. I dealt with all of my emotions and unhappiness for two years in a job that wasn't fulfilling. Now, that I look back on it.. it probably wasn't the smartest thing to do by staying in a job while feeling like that. A major cause of emotional destruction, but I held on and prayed.

As time went on, I felt like I needed a change in scenery. I needed to move somewhere because LA just wasn't doing it for me anymore. Don't get me wrong, it's one of the most beautiful and lively places to live, but it's definitely hyped up. I lived there for seven years and I just needed to go, but where? Maybe Texas, Michigan and a few more. Anywhere I felt like I could strive because reality check: everybody isn't meant to thrive in LA right away.

Then something great happens but I had confused, mixed feelings about. The company is closing my specific store, which means I'm either getting transferred to another location or getting laid off.

At the time it felt perfect because I was completely over working there, but bills.

I ended up getting laid off.

So now I'm free of the main problem that's holding my greatness back, but I'm also unemployed and have no income. Plus, I'm over living in such a fast-paced city.

I think it over, talk to my family and boyfriend and decided that it was in my best interest to move and relocate. So I did. I moved back to my hometown and at first felt like I was a failure going back but here I am, four months of being unemployed, but the happiest I have been in a while. My head is in a much better headspace than it was months prior and I feel.. like me again.

The best part about the whole move is that I'm in a better place in this small little city than I ever was in LA. The day I left from visiting my family back to SoCal to move all my things from LA I applied, once again, to a job in my desired field. I got a call two hours later. Had a phone interview two days later. Then three more interviews after that. Then I got another interview in media again, WHAT?! DREAM JOB CAREER. Now, I'm awaiting my third interview and just got offered another great position and I've only been here for a little under three months. Compare that to the two years I endlessly tried in LA.


I say all that to tell you this.

Sometimes you have to start somewhere small to end up somewhere big.

Believe that the storm you are going through has a bigger purpose in the end. Never in a million years did I think I would end up back here, but God brought me back with a bigger purpose! Please, don't ever stop trying. Please don't ever write off possible blessings in disguise. Consider making moves to places you wouldn't think of going, it might just be the move for you. Evaluate everything you have on the table at all costs, don't count anything out. I'm currently in the best situation for me. I didn't immediately see it, but God keeps showing himself more and more. It's been a long time coming and a change has finally come. There's light at the end of frustration and discouragement, you just have to stick around to see it.

I'm now at a place in my life where I'm capable of doing everything I ever dreamed of doing. A career I love, buying a home to build in and enjoying my life fully, not partially. It takes time, yes. It takes endless amounts of patience, but it's a great feeling when you can actually see the pieces finally coming together after being patient for so long. Just trusting in yourself to come out of hard seasons gracefully, knowing you battled in your time of waiting makes you appreciate the process more.

You will get frustrated.
You'll feel like you will never catch a break.
You will doubt yourself occasionally.
You will bend.

... but you won't break, so never give up on what you have your eyes set on.

Please, no matter how hard your season gets don't quit on yourself. I struggled, I cried and got frustrated many times! But I love the moves I'm making and the life that I'm about to live. Remember, sometimes God gives us mountains, just to take us higher. Trust me when I say, the struggle is worth it in the end. Although I'm not completely at the level I want to be at, I'm blessed and grateful for my storm shifting and now I can see the beauty it's creating. I still have a lot more to go and growth is still in full effect, but the most important thing of all is that I'm happily myself again.

I would love to hear from you. Have you ever felt like you can't catch a break? Are you discouraged in life post-college? Please, feel free to share how you are coping with this.



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2 comments

  1. Great post, Ashley! I have been stuck in a rut, got back up, and got knocked right back down again! So I know what you mean. But what I have learned is that we live through seasons. There is a time for us to build and sow, and there is reaping season. With me, I believe God had to take me back to where I started so that I could hear his voice better and trust in Him. And honey, I have a testimony lol.

    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, love. It's so easy to get discouraged, especially when it seems like everyone around you is killing it and you're just trying to stay afloat. I've been there, but I know it is preparing me for where I'm going. I appreciate your honesty on this subject and I'm so happy to hear you're in a happy place! Keep flourishing, love! Those blessings are coming! ❤️

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    1. Wow, all I could do was smile and nod when you mentioned that God had to take you back to where you started so that you could her his voice better! That's exactly how I am feeling. I was iffy about writing and sharing this, but so many people only highlight the good in their lives and my blog is the documentation of my journey and I figured it could potentially help someone else. Thank you so much for taking the time out to read. It is very discouraging sometimes but once you make it through the tough times you come out stronger and more prepared for where God is leading you.

      Thank you!

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