Posted on March 13, 2013
I couldn’t pass up today, 03/13/13, without posting because it’s one of those “I almost feel lucky” days, which if you’ve learned anything about me by now, is a pretty rare occasion.
I could spend all day going on about how the curves of the numbers look happy, or the roundness symbolizes harmony with life, but then I’d be venturing into what my daughter calls “Taylor Swift” territory since she’s obsessed with the number 13.
So much has happened since my last post. For starters, I got a full-time job after spending years (after graduation) searching, my mentor and I are still clicking, I finally put together a five-year plan, and oh – I turned 40.
The job came about through an employment agency in the area. I can’t tell you how many agencies I’ve contacted here and received no response. It still amazes me how they can have a city, but no real job opportunities. I’m surprised they have employment agencies here at all, because they’re really aren’t any jobs.
The mentor connection-thing is something I’d hoped for, but didn’t see coming. After residency I just knew when it came time for the phone conversations that he’d be sitting by the phone with a time clock and ruler, ready to chastise me and point out how unqualified I was as a writer. I don’t know how I come up with these dreadful scenarios. Anyway, I’m not usually so off when it comes to reading a person, so this was completely unexpected.
What’s different about him? He’s motivating. I’ve spoken previously about his teaching abilities, but this is different. It feels like he believes in me – which is hard to wrap my head around, so instead of analyzing it I just keep writing and working towards my goals.
Someone close to me recently said that this quest I’m on to become a writer is all a pipe dream. I knew exactly what the phrase meant, but for some reason it had a different impact than being accused of having my head in the clouds or chasing dreams. It stung as if someone had stuck a needle filled with arsenic through my heart and kept stabbing me with it until all the contents rotted and fell out.
At first I was hurt and angry, then the writer in me kicked in and I got literal with it:
A pipe dream is described as a vain but fervent hope for an impossible or unlikely situation.
So basically, this person thought I was the crazy person building an elaborate underground bunker, so when the green, bobble head, big-eyed aliens come with their powerful spaceships to take over our planet, suck out our brains with their laser guns, and use our bodies for experiments I’ll survive. Hmm. Yeah. Okay.
The idea that someone who played such an integral part of my life believed my goals were so ridiculous and unfathomable that I didn’t have a chance in hell at success was extremely unsettling – I cried. Then I used what was intended for harm as motivation and started finding support in other areas and through other people – like my mentor. Although we won’t get to spend nearly as much time together as I’d like, I’m soaking up his guidance like a sponge and hoping that when this journey comes to an end he’ll be there to celebrate with me along with my other friends.
The five-year plan materialized early one morning when I only had a few more hours before I had to get up and get ready for work – but it was not without apprehension. A part of me knew that when I finally figured out what I wanted to do with my life things would begin to unravel. It’s not karma, or doom and gloom, but more along the lines of the natural progression of things.
I think it’s important to set goals, but we must be realistic. To actually think we’re in control of anything that happens in the big picture of life is a bit naive. Sometimes life happens (good or bad) and you have to roll with it until the next ship comes along, which is what I did the next week when I quit my job – the day before I turned 40.
Of that experience I’d say I’m grateful for the opportunity, but oil and water simply won’t blend and everyone has their breaking point.
Regarding turning 40, I do feel age is of importance, but you truly are as young as you feel. Right now, like Taylor Swift, I’m feeling closer to 22 – “Happy, free, confused and lonely at the same time” with the sky as my limit. One lady told me 40 is the new 30. I don’t know what it is, but me and Ms. Clairol are rolling with it, and I’m already looking forward to my next adventure!
By the way, I now have pipe cleaners above the desk where I do my writing. There’s nothing like a good bit of motivation to get the words flowing.