The Silver Lining

I feel like a lot of what I do on my blog is complain. I really don’t want you all to think that everything is bad. My summer hasn’t been what I expected … and usually people finish that by saying, “it’s been better than I expected.” While I can’t honestly say that, it’s been eye-opening and there are still some great things happening this summer.

I don’t know that I want to work in a large market newsroom anymore. I’ve briefly touched on this in some of my other posts, but I just don’t know if this is the environment for me. Everything is so every man for themselves and the stories that excite people are rather on the depressing side. I like stories that are beneficial, uplifting, and show how the community is good. Human interest sort of things. I don’t know where I can find a place in central Indiana like this to work besides WIWU … and I don’t think they have any job openings right now.

So I’ve been wrestling with the uncertainty of what I want to do now. I used to confidently answer, “I want to be a news producer.” Now I’m not so sure. I do like storytelling, I like writing, and I even like producing … but I don’t feel like I can do my best at any of those things in a newsroom. The question becomes, “Now what?” I’m glad I am only doing this as an internship and not a job, because I know this is temporary and I don’t have the pressure of staying.

It’s been a difficult mental shift from feeling confidently that I knew what God wanted me to do to realizing that I may have put words in His mouth. I do think I have a passion for television, storytelling, and producing for a reason, I just think I tried too hard to figure out where that fit and didn’t let God tell me what I was supposed to do with this passion.

Family and friends have been extremely supportive. I’ve had many long conversations expressing these thoughts to people I trust and no one has told me I am wrong. No one has said, “You are giving up on your dreams,” or “Don’t throw away all the learning that you’ve done,” or “I can’t believe you’re changing your mind now.” I’m actually surprised I thought I knew what I wanted to do for so long. Most college students change their majors at least 3 times. I’m not talking change of major or degree. I still will graduate with a degree in Media Communication .. I just won’t graduate with a job as a news producer. Oh well. There are plenty of other ways I can use my skills and passions.

On a sort of related note … I’ve realized even more so that there is more to life than finding the perfect career. I mean I never thought that was what life was all about, but the most exciting and enjoyable parts of my summer have nothing at all to do with my internship. First of all, living only an hour away from Jonathan has been an enormous help.  I can truly enjoy my weekends spending time with him, and with his family. It’s a place I can go to distance myself from the chaos of work, and a place I can really feel at home.

The family I’ve been living with this summer has been a tremendous blessing as well! The kids love having me around, and their excitement to see me in the mornings and when I come home for dinner really gets me through the day.  Kristin and Jeremy have also been great to talk to about my job and life in general. They’ve really made me feel like a part of the family, even though it’s only a temporary thing.

So it hasn’t been the “dream job” summer that I thought it would be, but in a sense it’s been better. I feel like I’m learning more about myself, what my identity is without my job defining who I am. It’s not “Jaclyn Heck – TV News Producer” anymore. It’s just Jaclyn Heck. Just me … I’m not going to put myself in a box anymore. I don’t know where God will take me on this journey called life, but I think I’m ready to listen to him instead of trying to forge my own path. It’s just too much work to do this on my own.

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