A New Beginning

For the second time in my post-collegiate career, I've taken a risky leap of faith: I became an intern again.

This is my second week working at a small food & hospitality PR agency. While that may come to you as a shock (since, well, I've spent the last few years of my life convincing you that I'm a baker and will always be a baker), it's not a shock to me or anyone in my inner circle.

Radical honesty? I will always, always consider myself to be a baker. It's what drove me into this industry and keeps my creative mind awake at night.

But it was time for a change. Before I decided to write this post, I wrote another long-winded entry about the End of a Dream: my dream to become a pastry chef, that is. But I couldn't finish it.

This "dream" that I had sacrificed a lot for over the past few years somehow became muddled. There were moments when, exasperated, exhausted, and burned-out, I came home from work and cried. Was I still working towards my dream? Was the work I found myself doing still rewarding? Who was I becoming as I worked towards these goals?

Also underneath my personal reflections and confused questionings was the cold, hard truth of reality: was I working towards job security? Did my career path promise me opportunities beyond achieving my "dream"? Would my investment come with returns, such as health care (important in a particularly back-breaking industry with little time off in terms of PTO and hourly), raises, and other benefits?

Most importantly, was I still happy?

I don't regret a second of what I did with my life for the past year and a half. Not one minute of it. I truly believe I gained "real-life" experiences, as well as work and interpersonal skills that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

But at the end of the day, I'd come home and hang on to every minute I had left before I had to get up and do it all again. And that's how I knew my so-called "dream" was over – at least this part of it.

 "Self Portrait" by Alex Hawkins

"Self Portrait" by Alex Hawkins

So, I'm an intern again. At first, this was a hard concept for me to come to terms with. As a 24-year-old who's been out of college for almost two years (and hasn't been an intern for almost the same amount of time), it took a lot of self-convincing to take a step back in my career.

After endless job searching and endless silence, I realized that my resume didn't look like much to people outside of a kitchen. (I could write an entire other post about how much that infuriates me, but I'll spare you for now.)

In order to move forward with my career, I needed to start from the bottom and pay my dues (...again). So, with a deep breath and an optimistic attitude, I accepted an intern position at a PR agency that I had been following on social media (where I also coincidentally found their job post).

This doesn't mean I'm giving up on my "dream." I'm not letting go of it, I'm not settling, I'm not selling out. I'm still in an industry I'm obsessed with, I'm working with (or working at a company that works with) kick-ass clients that make me melt inside when they're brought up at work, and I'm learning more about a skill that I truly enjoyed picking up at my previous job.

I'm just trying to figure out what the next part of my "dream" is. And you know what? That's okay. I don't need to know right now.

I'm only 24, anyway. ;)