Monday, November 21, 2011
Once a Cheater.......
It’s a journey to the thing that so fulfills you that, if someone told you, “It’s right outside—but watch out—it could kill you!” you’d run straight toward it, through the screen door without even opening it. ......on Finding Your Way in a Wild New World by Martha Beck
I’m supposed to be working, revising lecture notes. I can’t do it. PowerPoints are about as sexy to me as a rousing root canal on a Saturday afternoon. So I’m cheating a bit with my blog post and taking full absolute unadulterated pleasure in every living second of it. I’m also thinking a lot about that quote up there. Actually, it’s not a quote quote, but more a description of a quote. Still. It makes me think. So much of my life lately is routine. I’m at a comfy spot, a good spot. I like my life. It’s ok, but nothing is new enough or exciting enough anymore to make my heart race. I miss that, my heart racing. There are things in my life that used to make my heart race. But nothing now is exactly worth running through the screen door for. Sort of like the PowerPoints. They’re not bad, but it’s not like Oooh, baby! Let me at ‘em!!
I came across another quote that suggests that the work you do while you procrastinate is probably the work you should be doing for the rest of your life. Well. Somebody pinch me. I need to know if this is indeed the Promised Land, me at a laptop with tortilla chip crumbs down my front, crafting words and grooving to a little Bob Marley. I’d definitely bust down the front door for that.
I think that’s going to be my new standard. Before I settle for anything just to settle, I’ll ask first if this is busting-down-the-door-worthy. I never understood the guys of the previous generation, the guys who did the same job for their entire lives, who put on their short-sleeved pressed white shirts each day and headed out to serve the company, to serve the man, the very company or man which rewarded them with nothing more than a way-to-go plaque and maybe a little vanilla cake with white icing upon retirement. Wake up. Go to work. Take lunch break. Work some more. Head home. Hug the wife. Eat the meatloaf the wife prepared. Read the paper. Say hello to the kids. Go to bed. Wake up. Rinse and repeat. I’d rather endure a back alley lobotomy. I need to know that I matter. I need to know that I’m using what I’ve been given. I feel an incredible compulsion to throw myself at the world in a big way, a very big way. But what exactly is big?
Big leaves me breathless. Big leaves my heart racing, my face flushed, my head confused in a really good way. Big makes my soul and my face smile that secret smile that leaves me wondering, Did that just happen? Oh, dear Lord, please let it happen again. Big feels a bit scandalous. I need that. I need that now.
Some would call this Living On the Edge. I call it Doing What I Was Put Here to Do. One more quote and then I promise to stop……A boat in the harbor is safe, but that’s not what boats are for. I was not put here to say oh, well, I think that’s good enough for today or I could do that, sure, but it looks pretty darned difficult, so yeah, I think not. I was put here to find those who need my kind of help. I was put here to uplift, move, motivate, encourage, inspire. I was put here to shine a light on the so-so and set souls on fire to do what they were put here to do. At least I think that’s why I was put here. This is my dilemma. First I need to find that thing that I am here to do. First I need to find that thing that I love, that I am passionate about, that thing that moves me like nothing else. And yes, you naysayers, it matters that I love it. Anything less and I’m dead on earth. I’m pretty sure that’s not why I’m here.
And how will I know when I find that thing that I am here to do? I will just know. I know this. My insides will talk to me. They’ve done that before. I once sold lipstick and blush and such. I was good at it. I was so good at it that I got to teach other women how to also sell lipstick and blush and such. I showed them how to build a successful business even when they didn’t think they could. I won prizes. I won totes and clocks and luggage and pretty bowls. I almost got to try to win a car. A car! Other lipstick ladies smiled their Mocha Freeze or Dusty Mauve smiles and applauded my efforts. I got ribbons. But then my insides started whispering in my ear. You’re doing a wonderful job, honey, but you are going the wrong direction. You are doing what you are here to do, yes, but not where you are here to do it. I didn’t understand, but I listened. I became an instructor. It felt right at the time. It still feels ok, but just ok now. My students don’t give me totes or pretty bowls, but they sometimes clap for me. I like that. Still. I’m hearing that voice again.
So pardon me if I seem not myself lately. I’ve been busy running into doors. Be patient with me. I’m hoping to bust through any minute now.