As I was glancing through my unread emails today something occurred to me. I saw the subject line for an email from the Career Resource Center at my alma mater informing me of a managerial position in Oregon. I deleted it without thought and kept scrolling.
It’s highly unlikely that is would have been the type of job I would apply for, but four months ago I would have at least looked at it. Before I graduated in May I decided that I would be willing to move pretty much anywhere if it meant I could start a career.
I addition to applying for jobs all over California, I also applied for jobs in New York, New Jersey, and Ohio. In hindsight it wasn’t the smartest tactic. Why would these places bother with interviewing me via Skype when there are more than enough qualified candidates applying close by? Regardless, I would have been willing to move for the right job. I was even excited about the prospect of starting new.
Now I have no interest in moving out of Northern California. Sure, if I was offered a chance at my dream job I would accept without a second thought, regardless of location. But that is not going to happen. I’ve stopped looking for jobs outside of the area. And when I was deciding upon graduate schools to apply to I decided to cross the Southern California schools off of my list.
It’s not that I want to stay where I am. I don’t, I assure you.
It’s almost more embarrassing than that…
I don’t want to move any farther away from my boyfriend. He’s currently going to school about four hours away, and I want to be closer to him.
I never thought I would be that girl. The one who makes important life choices based on a guy. But here I am. I picked my first choice grad school before we were even technically dating, and one of my favorite things about it is that it’s only an hour drive from his school. It also happens to have an incredible one year program, but I would be lying if I said the proximity to my boyfriend has nothing to do with why I want to go there so badly. It isn’t the only reason, but it was a factor in my decision making process.
We’ve only been dating for two months and this scares me a little bit. I always said I would never let a guy get in the way of my career. But then, I’d never had a boyfriend before. And I certainly don’t mean to sound like he’s holding me back. He’s incredibly supportive and encouraging. If anything, I’m holding myself back – or will hold myself back in the future, nothing has really happened yet. But I don’t want it to come to that.
I guess what I’m really worried about is that having a boyfriend has changed more than I’ve realized. There are good changes, or course: It’s nice to have someone to talk to, to know that if I have to go through something difficult he will be there, to receive sweet text messages at random, etc.
But being in a relationship also comes with some constrictions:
- There is a time commitment (which is fine with me right now because I don’t have a life).
- I’m no longer single, so I can’t get drunk and make out with random strangers (I’ve never actually done that, but it sounds fun, right?).
- I’m more reluctant to do things that are irresponsible (like booking a trip to France even though I’m $50,000 in debt with student loans), because I’m afraid he’ll think I’m crazy.
- I’m attached to him, and that means I don’t want to move half way across the country for a job that may or may not work out.
From where I’m sitting right now, it’s hard to tell if any of those are actually that bad. Honestly, I kind of feel like having a boyfriend (not just any boyfriend, but this particular boyfriend) is good for me. I’m just afraid that five years from now I’ll realize that I was wrong.