Your blessing is your curse, right? It’s very often said, and I very often see the truth in it. This weekend will mark one month of Funemployment…and some days are great, some days are okay, and some days are hard. I know what you’re thinking- that sounds a lot like life, right? It’s true. But I find it interesting that within one week I can feel a) thankful for the time off and hopeful it won’t end TOO quickly, b) depressed, bored and lonely, c) like the world is my oyster and I will continue to climb in my career and land a real gem (not a fake one) on my next job and d) that I have peaked and now will face the painful downhill. And today, I was thinking about this, and realized that actually my real damn problem is that I can’t stop thinking about it all. ACTUALLY, my curse in general in life, is that I simply can’t stop thinking EVER.
The older I get, the more I realize that people shut off. They can get lost in a song, or just look out the window and really SEE what’s right in front of them, or daydream for a while and not really even know what, if anything, they were thinking about. I have never experienced ANY of those things. My brain never turns off, I am ALWAYS ON. And that’s why- every job I have ever had- I’ve done the job I was asked to do- plus much more. And it’s why on every review I’ve ever had, people say “I’ve just never seen someone with so much capacity- and the ability to do it all SO WELL…” and it’s why all my friends and followers on Instagram say “How do you guys do it all? It just seems like you are always going.” It’s true. I almost never shut down. And the strength within that is- success, activity, experiences, capabilities…but man there is some curse in it too.
My mind never stops. It’s not racing. It’s not stressed. It’s just always thinking about something. Pondering this, pondering why I’m pondering that…putting myself in the shoes of the character of the book I just read, thinking about this friend, this family member, what I will do to make next Tuesday easier when there are overlapping kids events, wondering if I’m living my life to the fullest, assessing what could be different, more fun, more challenging, better, thinking about the next trip I will take, imagining what the songwriter was really meaning in that line that stands out to me…
Seriously. And I just thought that was how the human brain worked. As I’ve been married to Davis (now for almost 15 years- and this is NOT a dig on him or his brain- I promise) I have realized that it’s not how every human brain works. In fact, I think my brain is a freak. I wish she could just chill out.
And so, this downtime, in my funemployment…is actually pretty hard on me. Because there is nothing mentally taxing happening each day. And so- all I’m left to do is think, and plan, and hope, and sometimes stress, and re-consider, and ponder…and it’s somehow exhausting, lonely, AND boring.
I always tell my kids that “Only boring people get bored” and WOW I’m really challenged with that right now.
And I’m constantly trying to figure out why I’m in this situation, and what I need to learn, and how I need to grow, because of course I can’t just hang out…and I think all these things…openly with varying levels of excitement, patience, fear, and calmness:
1) I don’t know what life will bring- what if I am going to find out in one year that I have an illness? I will be SO incredibly grateful for this time…so I should just soak it up and enjoy every minute.
2) Chill out Sam. You’ve been out of a job for a month- you’re in New York, trying to network in Minneapolis, you have lots of job leads, they just haven’t been exactly what you want yet- you’ll be fine. You’ll look back on this one day when addressing a room of young people about how to move through challenges like this- and you’ll think “wow I was so myopic.”
3) I’m getting paid. I have nothing but time…what business can I start?
4) Maybe I’m actually about to find out that God has something greater for me than even what I imagined? Am I supposed to become a teacher? Am I supposed to get involved in politics or advocacy?
5) Get serious Sam. This is short- you’re here till your lease is up on February 1st, so just chill out and you can figure it out then.
6) This is amazing. I think I’ll take a nap, read another book, work out at the JCC…
Is that crazy? I’m kind of sure it is. So I’m struggling a bit. I don’t have friends here. I have nothing but time. My mind is never quiet, I have no work to distract it or wear it down, and I am not exactly ready to find a job here because I want to be THERE (Minneapolis)…so I’m kind of in limbo.
And don’t be sad for me. First of all- many days I feel very optimistic. Second of all- I just read a beautiful book called “Behind the Beautiful Forevers” about life in the slums of India. And it profiled the pain, the hunger, the grime, the lack of hope, and yet still the unbelievable resilience of the human spirit- and I know WELL that I don’t have real problems. I don’t.
But I guess I just want to get a little preview of what’s to come. So I can chill out a bit. But that wouldn’t be faith would it. And that’s probably what I’m supposed to be learning right now. So BAH. Here we go.
Love to you all.