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Since I’ve Been Gone

“Woman in Discomfort” courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I miss spring break.  And my week of happiness. I really do.  I had thought it didn’t feel different.  I thought this week went by quickly.  And it did.  I was surprised by how quickly this week actually went by.  But the stress has been crazy.  My face was almost completely clear last week, and this week it is destroyed. Make-up free?  Not a chance now.  Sunday evening and Monday morning I was overwhelmed with the mounting anticipation of the week, exhibited through stomach-clenching stress and undulating tremors of fear.

As usual I had worked myself up way more than was necessary, but I couldn’t believe what a difference I’d experienced between last week’s in-the-moment week and the never-ending constant stress and fear of this week.  Am I exaggerating?  Yes.  But there was a noticeable difference.

I did have some great moments this week that helped me appreciate teaching.  An activity that went well.  A bond made with a student.  A compliment from another.  For a while I questioned why I wanted to leave teaching.  And then the weekend hit, and I became obsessed with worry about grading and planning, and that’s when I remembered a big part of why I didn’t want to be a teacher anymore.

I’m scared now.  I don’t know what’s going to happen with me.  With my life.  I thought about music therapy.  Now I’m considering dance/movement therapy, and I’m still interested in different types of healing.  But my doubts plague me.  I know I could be excited about all of this.  I should be excited.  The last thing I need is to be attracting more fear in my life!  But even when I can shut off my own protective, critical voice, I hear concern in the voices of others.  Why would I consider leaving a job when I’m not sure of its replacement? Isn’t this a bad economy?  Don’t I need money?  Education costs money!  How will you get by?

Everything will be fine.  I know it will.  I will not join the panhandlers near the highway (although I’ve imagined discussing it with them).  I will not starve.  I will find a way.  I know that I should appreciate what I have.  I also know that I can’t settle for what I have.  I have settled for years, trying to reason and work through the unpleasantness until the unhappiness consumed and corrupted every piece of me.  I will not fall into that trap again.  Nor do I want to leap from the flame to the blade.  I will be happy.  It’s time to move on.  But where?  And how?

Day 5 on the Road to Happiness

Portrait Of A An "Excited Young Woman Celebrating Success Over Wh" courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Portrait Of A An “Excited Young Woman Celebrating Success Over Wh” courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’ve been staying out, so I think I’m just going to post about my day the following morning. . . sometimes . . .

1. Health – Almost didn’t exercise yesterday, but I got in a nice walk with a friend before the day was over (and froze my butt off a bit, darn weather!)  Didn’t start off the day right with eating.  Ate very little during the day.  Was saved again by my friend who gave me a snack of peanut butter and carrots – which I devoured – and treated me to tasty vegetarian Chinese food: the best-tasting tofu, various veggies, brown rice, dynamite Thai sauce, a spring roll, and a fortune cookie with a fortune that was either very sweet or kinda creepy.

2. Creative Time/ Me Time — I did meditate a bit yesterday.  Did the bonus meditation from Deepak and Oprah’s 21-Day Meditation (22nd day).  Also opted for a light nap instead of exercise in the afternoon, which felt great.  Took my time getting ready and showering, which almost resulted in me being late for my tutoring appointment.  Can’t be thaaat relaxed, I guess. . . Didn’t get too much creative time in.

3. People — It was good to see my tutoring student and good to see my friend yesterday.  I’m still reluctant to leave the house sometimes to go places and leave my comfort zone (I swear sometimes my house is like a black hole!), but once I’m with people, I remember that I need and like being with people.

4. Being in the Moment – I’m still working on being in the moment.  I think I’m going to have to be satisfied with moments here and there instead of continuous moments.  And that is fine.  I had an experience that shook me up a bit yesterday, and I’m still working through my feelings today.  But I think I’ve made progress.  Yesterday I observed myself as I went through the feelings.  Today I am working on letting my feelings be and not trying to squelch them.  I’ve been reading about how repressed feelings are still there, and they only come back stronger when they are activated again.  So, I feel pretty good about how I’m developing.

5. Life Purpose — My intuitive experience with Amy was great yesterday.  I learned a little about my spiritual guides.  I have a group who are near me, but one in particular is hovering around me lately.  A very protective, mothering type.  That freaked me out a bit when I heard it.  I have a second very protective, mother?  (My independent, rebellious side may have begun to hyperventilate a bit.)   But I am going through a difficult time right now trying to figure out what I’m doing with my life, and I’m grateful for her presence; I know I am a very sensitive person, and I can use her protection.  I should have asked Amy which guide was sending me the number signs.  I guess it doesn’t really matter; I was imagining some scholarly, mathematician-type.  Maybe I’ll meet that guide sometime in the future!

She also talked about what she saw from my past lives and how that can tie into our present.  She saw me doing something like a court reporter and also being part of a spiritual council somehow.  She tied that into my teaching in this life.  (And I thought, what?  A teacher?  Oh no!)  But she explained that a “teacher” does not necessarily mean “teacher” in the classroom teacher sense.  I may be “teaching” others in something I am passionate about.

And she talked about following my passion.  She said that others will become interested in my work because I’m passionate about it, because of the emotion I bring into it.  I told her about my passion for equal rights and for natural health, and she said to explore those.  She said that I might be called on to speak about topics, and I told her that I enjoy public speaking – I just don’t know what to speak about! She mentioned that I might use my blog as an outlet for my passions or even start another blog.  I may even want to do a video blog, since I don’t mind being in front of people.  That is something I’d like to try.  Finally, I mentioned my interest in healing work (energy healing).  My guide said that everyone has the potential to work with healing energy; Amy said that she hadn’t received any information about that, but that didn’t mean that it wasn’t a part of my future, and that anything that has entered my mind like that has popped up for a reason, so to pursue that.

Early Mid-Life Crisis?

Yes, I feel like I’m going through an early mid-life crisis, and the worry tears me apart sometimes. I’m not supposed to have one of these until I’m 40, right? But, no, here I am at the young age of 30 trying to figure out what the heck I’m supposed to be doing with my life. And what makes it worse is that I’m an indecisive young woman who wants both chocolate AND vanilla, who hates closing doors behind her, and who would rather dip her toe in at every point in the river, rather than pick a location and wade directly across.

How did I get here? My good friend tells me that this is a normal part of the human process. It’s normal to change situations in life because we are changing beings. If you are a different person than you were 10 years ago, you may not fit in your job anymore. That’s a little more comforting than my explanation: I’ve been wishy-washy all through my life, falling into a major so that I could give myself some sort of identification and falling into a job because otherwise my parents might boot me out of the house. So, as you can see, her explanation is much more pleasant.

So, now what? Afraid to make a bad decision, and comfortable with the familiar (but also bored and frustrated with it), I can’t find a single job that truly interests me. And at this point, I’m not sure if I should be looking for the perfect job or looking for my “rebound” job that will get me from point A to point C. Anything that seems like it could be interesting also seems to have qualifications that I do not have, i.e. experience in that field. Where is the “looking for ex-teacher who wants to try something new, possibly involving writing or editing or something else creative and also leaves the world a better place?” job? (And I’ve actually tried to google something pretty close to that. . .)

A part of me wants a brainless job. And by brainless, I don’t mean a stupid job. I mean, I can go in, do my job without too much stress, and check out and leave it behind. I would like to have a job that isn’t 75% of my life. I remember some years ago I was reading a book with creative job options, and one that sounded particularly appealing was traveling around Europe picking fruit. Permanent career option? Hardly. Not even a full-time option, as it would be seasonal, but how completely lovely. Just me, the trees, and the European landscape. (audible sigh) The simple life. But then, I was the one in my foreign exchange college experience who imagined staying behind in the little Mexican village, instead of returning to the university and the states. I never pursued anything like either of those ideas, and now I’ve truly tied myself down with a mortgage, a boyfriend, and 3 kids( two cats, and a dog, which, let’s face it, are a lot less mobile than 3 human kids).

That means that for now I am a spectator on a stomach-wrenching stage as my pessimist :“You will never find an interesting job that you are qualified for AND doesn’t require you to move/leave your boyfriend and animals/sell your soul, etc” wages vicious battle against my optimist: “Your perfect job is just around the corner. Everything in your life has led up to this point, and you are exactly where you need to be. Just keep visualizing, believe, and go get it!”  And I really hope that the optimist is right!
Image: David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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