The Life I Want

I am facing a transition. And this one I have not been handling well. For the past week I have been hiding. It isn’t that I am dreading what is coming. I am ecstatic about the changes that are going to happen in less than nine days. But that is the problem.

I have nine days of this life left.

On Friday the 25th my contract with AmeriCorps VISTA will be over and I will be free to move back home to Tdale. I will get to see my Fusband everyday, and my parents almost as often. I couldn’t be happier–in nine days. I can’t quite put my finger on what is making this transition so hard, but I have noticed the tell-tale signs of depression creeping back in. I have stopped writing and blogging, as some of you might have noted my absence. I find myself having a hard time doing all the things I should do: work, eat healthy, write, read, be social, exercise, work.

I am taking this momentary break in the emotional clouds, so to speak, to get a blog post in before things close back in. I don’t know what makes right now any different from the past half hour, which I spent in the break room at lunch giving myself a pep-talk, urging myself to go back to my desk. Sometimes I just want to crawl into my skin and disappear. Thankfully, I have been granted a reprieve and am actually happy as I write.

As I face the upcoming task of moving home and starting a new life, I have been thinking a lot about what I want to do with my life. I know I don’t want it to be what it has been. There are 168 hours in a week. We spend an average of 56 hours sleeping, 40 hours working, 10 hours doing all the things we are supposed to do, and the remainder we get to spend how we want: family, friends, pool parties.

The remainder. It seems so sad, and even wrong, that we give what is left over to those we love the most.  The majority of the time we have a week is spent doing things we have to do. It seems like a cruel joke that we work more than we love, and we get to love less than we sleep. To me it seems even worse if you love your work–it takes up more time that way. This week I have worked over 50 hours–because I care. I know it is nothing compared to a 60 or 80 hour work week, but it is more than I want to give.

And if I spend the remainder on other people: my family, friends, and my marriage what is left for me?

Maybe I am being a little dramatic. I don’t really know–bear with me. Drama isn’t something I do regularly.

All of this has made me realize that I do not want a traditional 9-5 job. I don’t want a job. I want to work, but within my scope of passion. I do not want to push around paper unless it is the pages to my book, and I don’t want to spend the majority of my time away from the life I am so carefully building.

It is a relief in some ways to come to this realization. It means I do not really have to worry about building a resume unless it is specifically related to writing. It means I can stop wasting my energy on plans and ideas that I was making and having just to make myself feel like I am normal. To make myself feel like a viable member of society.

It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society – Jidda Krishnamurti

It is not that I think everything we do is sick, but I do think we have a propensity for being workaholics, for being stressed, for forgetting to live because we are too busy, for being too busy. I think it was inevitable that I would end up going against the grain. I have always rebelled, in one way or another, against societal norms (I hated GPA’s and the fact that College has become an expectation). So it makes sense that I would want to go off the grid to some extent. To work from home. To be a free-lancer. To be successful on my terms.

To be an Artist. With a capital A.

Good lord, I must be crazy.


4 thoughts on “The Life I Want

  1. Pingback: Top 10 RAWResome Blog Posts {Jan. 13 – 19} | Julie's Chick Lit

  2. lythya says:

    I hope you succeed. Did you know the average hours of work per day when we were hunter-gatherers were five hours? The rest was spent on playing around and telling stories.
    It’s so sad we don’t do that more. And that we reproof of those who do.

    • That is really sad. I read something somewhere that by prolonging our daylight hours with artificial light we stress our selves out. It is recommended that when we are awake after dark to limit the number of lights on in the house. Things were a lot simpler when we were hunters/gatherers.

      • lythya says:

        Yup. I bet we had much better night vision, haha! 😀 Or just a fire to sit around.
        Maybe a lot of the stress also has to do with flourescent light from computers. I think just turning off computer and reading a book instead would help.

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