Victory never tasted so sour!
This composition is meant to be the epilogue to my post "The chronicles of being unemployed", on which I told you all about my wide range of feelings towards being fired, then having difficulties while trying to get a new job and finally getting to work at a such good company.
As I wrote back in that post, God’s timing is always right. Rarely have I felt so disheartened as I did back to when I realized I didn't get to work for Roche. But I truly do believe now that me not getting the chance to work there was probably one of the best things that could have ever happened to me.
Of course, I am not going to fake stuff. I went through really tough financial problems back in 2019 that could have been solved if I started to work for that company, but I mean that when I say it was better for me not to get that chance, otherwise I would now be at a much worse place in life.
Rumor has it that the girl who "grasped" my position was fired back in April, 2020, at the very beginning of the pandemic here in Rio de Janeiro! It would have been terrible for me trying to get my bills paid knowing I would not be able to spend my money even on food in a month or so. Egoistic much? I hope she’s thriving!
However, I thankfully managed to work for a company who respected me as I employee even though I was only an intern (I am not saying it is ok to treat interns as disposable as broken glassware, but it’s sadly common here in Brazil, specially when it comes down to working at chemical and pharmaceutical industries). Despite the pandemic taking over, my bosses agreed on keeping my friend and I as their interns — something that brought me a sense of gratitude I’ll probably never be able to fully express.
From March 20th, 2020 to August 11th of the same year, I stayed at home. In spite of being in contact with my bosses every now and then, I didn’t really have anything to do (specially because I used to work at the lab, something that required me being physically present). That saved me time to basically change my life forever.
I decided to do what I had said I would end up doing by the end of 2019: I was going to study for a civil service examination! Working for the Brazilian Navy was something a friend of mine said he would have me do since 2015/16, but I honestly paid no mind to his expectations at all back then. I have always thought I would never have what it takes to work for such an important institution. Imagine fighting for a position against hundreds, maybe thousands of Brazilians all over the country!
However, even though the pandemic brought us all a deep feeling that something was just about to be lost forever, I saw the chance to study hard in other to shine through. And so I did. I won’t lie and say I studied everything I intended to cause I am very lazy and at times I would study nothing at all, but I did a good job. I took a grade of approximately 72% and that allowed me to go to the next steps.
Prior to taking the written exam, I said there would be two times I would fail:
1) On the Writing test; and
2) On the Swimming test.
I did happen to almost fail on the writing test. I have no problems writing about most of the topics they would bring up, but I had no time to do so. Yet again, I was in danger due to my lack of discipline. Thankfully, even though I wasn’t able to write as well as I think I can, I still got a pretty good grade. Then, a few months later, I took the swimming test. I know what you’re going to think — How ridiculous of you to even think about joining the Navy while you don’t know how to swim!
When I saw the depth of that swimming pool (it might be 20 ft deep), I faced my biggest fear. Only in that very moment did I realize not only am I afraid of heights, I am also afraid of deep bodies of water. I failed on my first attempt, but thank Xangô I managed to make it through the other side of the swimming pool on my second try.
After that, I didn’t really face any major issue. I was eager to make that happen. I needed to get in as soon as possible cause the fear of losing my spot again was enormous. Then, in August 10th, 2021, I started studying for the Navy’s corporal’s course.
Reducing the six months I spent there to a mere paragraph is not enough to pay it right, but I will simply say I am now a different, maybe better person. The Navy has changed my life forever — even though I can’t quite point out what it is that has been changed in me. I faced sheer anxiety and priceless moments of joy with the people I’ve been surrounded by.
Right now, I would say that I am only tasting the sour side of it (which is why I chose that title). I am broke. I can’t help my mother with the bills. I can’t find another job cause I don’t have time for so (plus, it’s illegal). I had to sacrifice my grades at the university because I was focused on the military course. Even though I did that, I still ended up working at the very place I tried the hardest not to go; all that for nothing.
Nevertheless, I do feel like this is all going to end. Of course, I feel miserable for having to deal with all the things I am facing right now, but I feel like it is fair enough to say I have faced worse things and I have been in a worse moment of my life in the past. I mean, I work for the Brazilian Navy! Only 0,0004% of my country’s population shares the same privilege.
With that said, I hope I have expressed how grateful I am for all of the things that have been happening to me since 2020 as well. I may have forgotten to write about the number of people who helped me get this through (like my former boss at ARLANXEO), but I guess I let it be known I’m grateful for all the help they have given me. I also hope I have finished that 2018/19 chapter of my life at last. It came with much delay, but better late than never, right?
Now, I look forward to being useful to the Navy as a corporal just as I expect it to help me achieve my dreams more easily than I ever could. I am also finally studying Chemical Engineering again, just as I promised I would when I had to drop out of college back in 2017. Last, but not least, I am just about to finish my English course (which I also started in 2017). I can’t wait to take English international exams to prove I am either a CAE or a CPE! Then, I will probably move on to learning German (something I have been craving to do since then).