I had my first session with the career counselor, and I have to say it was actually kind of fun: one part "Wow, what an interesting life story you have!"--the farming always gets people--and one-part drilling down to the Essence of Laura. It was essentially an hour of free-association discussion based on a list I gave her of every job I've ever had, bulleted with likes and dislikes. (I realized later I left off the Dairy Queen and some other stupid job I had for about fifteen minutes, but which I can't recall at the moment. D'oh.) Unfortunately, I had too many jobs to fit into the hour window. We may have to step up the pace.
You want glimmers into the Essence of Laura? Me too. At bare minimum, we seem to have established my way with a bullet point, because she was much amused with my lists. Which is strange, because I wasn't even trying to be funny.
Anyway, I'm now thinking now that her job would be awesome to have. Somewhere around 1997, I considered briefly doing social work because I like that empathetic interaction when you're trying to help people. And it seems the burnout factor on career counseling would be a tad lower than for those jobs where you're dealing with people with real psychological need. Does that sound shallow, like I only want to help people psychologically if it's not too much of a drag?
We'll see how the process ends up. I think it will be worthwhile.