Lately I feel like I just woke up after sleeping through my entire life. I’ve had this feeling before; more than once. This time it’s different because when I’ve had this feeling in the past I’ve been down on myself for all the time I spent “sleeping” and all the times I went back to “sleep” after being “awake.” but this time… I’m awake, happy to be, and comfortably aware that this is the way it was supposed to be.
I mentioned on Friday that a lot is happening and I owe you a story about that, but I want to mention (so I don’t forget) that I have something to tell you about today too. Remind me, please. On with the show!
Friday’s story: I got a new job. Which is exciting in most cases but has been so much more than just that to me. Here’s why.
I’ve been at my current job since 2003… That’s nearly 9 years and it’s my entire adult “career.” The place I work is the kind of place where people have more than “just a job.” it’s a progressive and exciting agency that makes tremendous impact on the lives of the people we serve and the mental health system at large. I have learned so much about myself and become so much of myself because of my work there. It wasn’t until I started working there that I finally found people of like mind with whom I truly felt like I belonged (by the way, I’ve found many more since… but at 23 it really was the first time).
A lot of the culture where I work is similar to being a member of a family… and like all families we have our issues. I’ve had conflicts with people, I’ve felt dissatisfied before, I even left once (about 3 years in for less than 30 days), and shortly before things blew up with bfo I realized that I had made a huge error in viewing my work as the place where I would get all of my worth and other emotional needs met. When I distanced myself emotionally from my work (I still did my job as best I could, but I stopped expecting to get all of my emotional needs met and stopped spending all of my emotional energy there) I found that I had energy to spare and was suddenly able to enjoy the roles (of mother and wife) I had in my family (that I had previously resented for sucking the life out of me). I found happiness. For the first time. Yep. Just about 6 months ago.
Anyway, you know what happened with that wife role, and this whole year is really about getting my worth from myself (and not any outside role. Although lately I am hitting that motherhood role out of the park! …if I do say so myself)
The other thing that happened when I took some emotional distance from my work, found happiness, and committed to learning more about myself and how to love her is that I started to ask myself what I wanted. Among all of the things I will explore in this FP I also decided that I wanted a change of scenery. Now, I can’t go far… spiderman and bfo have a relationship to maintain and I’m not going to get in the way of that… but Los Angeles is a short drive away (on a weekend, at least) and I decided that’s where I wanted to live.
I also decided that I didn’t want to commute 1.5 hours each way (short becomes long when everyone else is doing it too). It wouldn’t work for me and the kind of life I want to have… So, I started to look for a job in LA.
And I found one.
Then came the time to tell my “family” I was leaving. It wasn’t because I was unhappy with them, it was because of something I wanted for me… but still when I was met with questions about what they could do to keep me I lingered in doubt all of a sudden. I began to second guess myself… if they valued me so much, was I making a mistake by leaving?
This moment of doubt felt very familiar and I found myself asking when I had felt this way before… hmmmmmm
And then it hit me. I had been here before. And not long ago. I had chosen to walk away from a prominent relationship in my life after much pleading to stay when I left my marriage the first time… and then I let myself get lured back into a comfortable space (where i felt secure in someone else’s love for me) instead of sticking with the challenge of the unknown.
And then it was clear. Now, my marriage and my job are very different, but in either case I needed to choose to honor myself first. Last time I was faced with the choice between myself and someone I loved, I chose them. I wasn’t going to do that again. I decided to go for me… and that was the right choice.
And I’ve felt great about it ever since.
So… Yay! This feeling of being awake is so peaceful and thrilling all at once. I have found myself feeling quite in love with life… that, as a persistent state of being (rather than a temporary hormonal high), is new to me. I like it.
Okay, this has gone on pretty long and I’ve got to get to some business so let’s get on with the teaser.
I made a decision today… about letting go. And I’ll tell you about it soon, but first I’m going to sit with it for a while to see how it feels and if it evolves. And that’s it. That’s what I wanted to tell you. I made a decision and I’m not going to act on it… that’s a big deal for me. Yes, I want a trophy.
Business: The art party is Saturday. If you’re local and you didn’t get an invite (and you want to come) it’s because I don’t know you read this (you should post a comment every once in a while). I’d be happy to send you an invite, let me know… No stalkers please (unless you’re cute).
By the way, I’m pretty sure the whole cast of the blog will be there. It will be like meeting celebrities. That’s my sales pitch. Take it or leave it.
More business: I didn’t do an artist’s date last week… I didn’t have time. I also didn’t have time to eat much… and I lost 3pounds (and I was having my period… when I always gain at least 3 pounds even if I’m being 100% faithful to my eating and exercise routine, so we’re going to say I lost 6 pounds this week). Sorry, inner artist. I’ll take a 3 pound weight loss over a date with you anytime. Maybe I’ll catch you next week?
Off to be even more awake than usual because I forgot to ask for decaf coffee this afternoon. Oops.