Today was highly uneventful. I did get to work from home – which was great. I really do need to spit out a quick update post from the last few months on the whole work gig and debt goals and where I am at now. Perhaps that is coming.
Actually, let’s do this thing now since the direction of my mind just shifted gears so fast.
A very small few of you reading this may already know some of my deep struggles with working at the job that I am (still) working. I talked a few months back about having some financial goals I wanted to accomplish before taking the plunge and quitting it all and trying to do whatever I could to make it work on my own… art, writing, podcasting, etc. etc. Well, I haven’t yet made that plunge, and I felt now is as good a time as ever to walk through some of the [non] events that have happened over the last few months.
I’m still here. Still clocking away at that nine to five, semi-regular travel job I spoke about a few months back. I haven’t had the balls to leave, mostly because I don’t have balls, but also for the financial reasons I battled out in my last post about the whole ordeal. However, some things have also shifted in a good way since that time… I am not sure what to credit it to, but Aly wrote a really great post about something similar that happened to her, and I think that might be along the same vein of what’s occurring with me and my job.
Well, since I last talked on the topic, I was planning to knock out those big debt goals. I did it, guys! I really did it! And let me tell you – it was… Meh.
Over the last 2 years or so, I would obsess about the payments my guy and I could make toward our, at the time, overwhelming debt goals – how we could pay it all off, what could happen, what WOULD happen when we did it – how I’d feel, the freedom I envisioned it would give me. Yes, yes, YES!… ALL the things! I was singularly focused on it. And then we’d plug away, me, lamenting the job I have, but staying in the game focused… I’d hit one milestone. Sweet. But a few to go… Then we’d hit another. What? It’s really happening you guys! It’s happening, and then another! Huzzah! We’re doing this shit! Ahhhh, and finally, sweet, glorious, sweetness… We hit that last milestone. The last, big Cahoona, the almighty massive goal we wanted to hit… And it felt like??? LIKE??? Well, kinda like hot air you just blew into a balloon and it was slowly deflating and spatting in your face.
What happened? Why did it not give me everything I had hoped for and more? I don’t want to overly downplay it – it did feel pretty good – for about 4 minutes. I mean, right after I hit “submit” for that final payment, I was like HOLY SHIT… I DID IT. WE DID IT. I CAN’T BELIEVE this!
And then I looked around the room. And just like that, as quickly as the excitement came, it dissipated into thin air just like the days of our lives. And I was right back in my room, looking around, wondering, this is it? This is all I feel? Wow, I am pretty dissapointed angels didn’t just float down from heaven and congratulate me. Where the fuck are you Michael?
Nah, nothing happened. And I mean it. Literally, nothing happened. My targeted debt was gone (well, we still have a house payment), and here I was just like, wow – was it really worth it?
I don’t know if it was actually worth it or not. I do know it’s been a goal of mine to be debt free since I have been about 16. Of course school bills, car payments, lost jobs, and new school bills amongst other events happened, and it went up and down, back up and finally… finally, gone. I think it’s a good thing overall, but honestly, I think it’s a good thing for any other reason than the over-inflated joy of not having outstanding bills to pay. Like, the reward of a long sought after goal being accomplished. Yeah, a 20-year goal was met. And that’s pretty fucking cool, I guess. But nothing really changed, honestly. Nothing. changed.
I still get up for the same job I loathed and was holding on to for this goal’s achievement, and now I do it, just because, well, nothing else is bringing in the kind of money it is, so hey, why not? I still have mostly the same routines. I still spend the way I was mostly spending before (actually, we’ve spent quite a bit more lately on stupid and fun shit), and sure, we got a new toy here and there in the mix of it – but overall? Same, same.
I think it also could count as good in the sense that the job means less and less to me now. Perhaps that was the reason I needed to get this pesky debt goal out of the way – that I wouldn’t feel as dependent on the monies… Perhaps. (However, I have a sneaky suspicion that given enough time, it wouldn’t have been much of a factor. But paying it off, likely sped that process along just a tad faster.) So since the debt payoff and me giving fewer shits about the job, other cool things there have transpired. Things that make the job less horrendous. It’s like, the more I stopped giving such a huge shit, things really started improving. Things that allowed my absolute torture to feel alleviated quite a bit. Things that make me go, “Huh, I can probably stay at this for a few months more and see what happens with the building of a new ‘something’.” For example, my new boss is a rockstar. Well, not really, but he’s just super cool. Working under him has been really amazing. He lets me do my shit – trusts me to get it done, and lets my team work from home almost 4 days a week. And he’s really a stellar guy. Kind, funny, and laid back. Someone you enjoy shooting the shit with but also highly respect and admire – that’s super great. Secondly, we got to hire another employee to share my workload. And as luck would have it (or the fact my boss could tell I was getting unhappy), we actually hired someone I used to work with at a previous job. Yep, I referred him, and they liked him (because he’s a badass and trustworthy and an all-around great dude), and he got hired. So now, I get to work with a friend I respect, that knows me (and my style of work) pretty damn well. And that’s super cool. I also got a teensy little raise over the last 4 months (not much to write home about). But the icing on the cake? Ohhh, it’s the best one so far…
So, a couple of Friday’s ago, I had to drive into work. I remember getting home, late, exhausted and actually looking at myself in the mirror and saying, “I don’t think I can keep doing this 1.5 hour (each way) commute anymore. I am just not cut out for this. I think it’s time to go, I gotta look for something, anything else…” You know what happened the very next Monday? I got a call from my super cool boss and was told that they are moving our finance team over into our offices, and since we have limited space, our team got proposed to be a work-from-home team since we travel so much. Yep, I get to start working from home officially as of next week. Well, hell, that’s pretty fucking cool. Because of this, I am back at a semi-normal workout routine (“normal” being debatable), I get to cook more often, and I don’t come home to a fucking horrific list of chores because I can do quick errands here and there like a load of laundry or run the dishwasher in-between working from home. Yeah, I’d say, I am pretty fucking grateful. They literally have carved out the most ideal work situation for me – ever. Well, except for one tiny little thing…
Yeah, The soul’s purpose. That tiny little thing. It’s such a great setup now. I can’t believe I am lucky enough to do this shit. But today was another one of those days, where I just fought to stay focused and could feel the discouragement of doing this work slowly rise in me like a grating, slow drip faucet filling a bucket. Yeah, I have all the badass perks I have ever wanted, working in an airline industry job like I thought I wanted when I was younger, working from home, travel and yet? I still don’t do the work I actually WANT to do… That’s the thing. You can dress up a pig, but it’s still filth underneath. And yet? I am still here… not doing much about it. Not writing (well, as much as I want), not painting, not having the energy after working for this place to really give myself over to the things that seem more real in life for me. I continue to stick to this agreement I have made with this company where I prostitute my time for them so I can have nice new shiny things (which, ONE new shiny thing I got, I am about to write a post about – because this new shiny thing has me so fucking excited and loving my sunny weekend mornings more than anything I’ve felt in a long ass while! Stay tuned for “Lil Blue!” coming up next!)
And that’s the struggle, right? We take on the journey to finding our truest selves, and devoting our time and such limited, precious energy we have on this earth to doing what we most value and see as the most fulfilling and good for our specific lives. And while I still don’t have that sorted out in a way that I can give myself over to it fully, I take it day by day – only this time, the Uni has recently graciously thrown me a bone to carve out just a few more hours out of my day to see if I can’t gain some traction on it… And so, I take advantage of the time, even when exhausted after a long day at my personal home desk, offer myself up in service to my muse, and take a few more tiny baby steps along the way…
Moral of the story? Jesus, I don’t know. Maybe that debt isn’t really holding you back and it’s in your fucking head? Perhaps it’s along the lines of what Aly spoke of in her post on the great adage “Give fewer shits and better shit shall come” (Okay, not “great”, and not an official adage yet, but still)? Maybe, it’s that it’s not over until it’s over and this is the fucking journey to you learning to drop your shit and finally live your most authentic life? Take your pick. But ‘till next time… I’m gonna hold up this glass of wine to you, edit another post, and see where tomorrow takes us.