A few weeks ago, I had applied for a job as a freelance proofreader for a proofreading company.
Before I go on, let me say that I am experienced in this field. I recently proofread “My Heart Speaks,” a book of poetry written by Ernest Roberson Sr. that is available through Amazon. I participated in the Business Professionals of America’s district contest in high school, where I placed in the top 10 of the administrative assisting and proofreading/editing competitions.
So, I didn’t go into this opportunity totally blind.
I was sent a sample essay to proofread — obviously to show my skills — and I honestly thought I did pretty well.
Earlier this week, I received an email saying that I didn’t get the job. The reason — they claimed — was because I missed several grammatical errors. They even included them in the email. They mentioned that they were also looking for writers to work on future projects.
I wrote them back and apologized for the errors and mentioned my experience as a writer/blogger, but they later wrote me back saying that it didn’t meet their criteria.
To say that I was disappointed would be an understatement.
I was angry. I was bitter. I was resentful.
Because I knew I was discriminated against because of my learning disabilities.
I had mentioned them because it’s not anything I am ashamed about. It’s who I am. I have made sharing my experiences living with this condition a part of my career.
In their emails, it was clear in their wording that they believed I was someone with a low IQ.
I spent the rest of the week moping around, feeling sorry for myself and taking my frustrations out on myself and my loved ones. I know this was not the wisest course of action to have taken.
The incident brought back all the negative feelings I had battled with for years over all the rejections I had to deal with.
I went back down the same “oh, woe is me” path I went down on for most of my life.
It brought back all the memories of being turned down for jobs because my learning disabilities were considered too much of a liability.
But after a bad night’s sleep, I came to realize that all of this was — quite frankly — ridiculous!
I was allowing my naysayers to control my life… again. I wasted 30 years trying to get them to accept me and I was not about to let all the hard work I put into finding healing go down the drain.
So, I picked myself up and have moved on.
As luck would have it, a couple of new job opportunities have opened up. Plus, I have found several websites that are accepting submissions.
I have been wanting to write for Blue Mountain Arts after I discovered them at a local Cracker Barrel many years ago. I want to write for Chicken Soup for The Soul.
There are so many things I want to do. Now, I’m obviously not condoning what happened to me and nobody should who have gone through something similar.
It was wrong and — if you want to get technical — it was illegal. People with learning disabilities are protected under the Americans With Disabilities Act, but I have decided it is a battle not worth fighting. For me, anyway.