From time to time I remember that we’re all just doing our best, some of us are more capable than others but in general we’re all getting by on the same sense of perseverance and necessity that is ingrained to keep us alive. When I think of us as highly cognitive animals I can breath a little easier knowing that I’m not doing that bad for a hairless ape.
I, like many, don’t like or appreciate change. Even when it is overall a positive one. I’m just beginning to settle in and also beginning to wonder if I should have even bothered. But that’s not the right question. There’s nothing wrong with settling in so long as one is clear headed going in that it might not last forever. Settling in is far less stressful than constant change. The right question is had I known I would get so attached to ‘settled’ that I did not want to give it up, would I have still done so? The answer that makes the most sense is ‘probably’. Dramatic sigh. Good job.
Trying to predict the future is impossible. I made a choice. Now, or a few months from now, I will make another choice. I knew that settling in might be temporary but I thought it would be the little bit longer rather than the little bit shorter kind of temporary.
Facing down 30 I’m struck by the realization that I no longer want to run around helter-skelter pursuing the untenable. I don’t want temporary anymore. I want a huge garden, a medium sized dog, a simple life. Something akin to the American Dream. But maybe it is just that, a dream.
Part of me got here because of a yearning for change and adventure and life experience. The rest of me tagged along, grumbling about packing the truck up once again, leaving friends, and dealing with new places and new stresses. We’re both better for the experience (says Thing 1) but the tides they are a changing (says Thing 2).
Do I take the job that moves me two hours south (if it’s offered)? Sell the cabin? Rent again? Hit the road and never look back (for four years at least)?
In a way I’ve been asking myself this for the last couple years. I knew the job might come around but now it’s actually come around and I can’t just ask the questions, I also have to answer them. Plan. Be an adult and do adult things.
Thing 1 says that I should take it without a second thought. It’s a good career move and that alone should persuade me. Thing 2 says I should hold on, not make any drastic moves yet, and consider other options that would allow me a huge garden, a medium sized dog, a simple life. Both Thing 1 and Thing 2 are surprisingly realists for all the trouble they cause and both make good points. There is no wrong choice, though a choice must be made.
However, there is also no ‘right’ choice, and maybe that makes me the fish in this analogy. The pseudo-responsible skeptic who looks at Thing 1 and Thing 2 with alarm and just wants things to stay as they are.
An imperfect analogy. Admittedly.
Naturally, in order to plan, I have to stress a little. Which is why I am awake at 4am pondering the future and letting Thing 1 and Thing 2 make a mess of things.
Needless to say, the opportunity alone is a welcome one. Even if it brings hard decisions with it. I’ve been working towards this for about a decade and while that doesn’t obligate me to this singular path, it does temper my decisions in a way. In the grand scheme of things, four years is not that long. And maybe I can have a small garden. Or at least a few more house plants.
How bout that New Years resolution to stress less? Eh? Eh?
At least I’m a pretty good ape, if I do say so myself. (I hope we can all agree on that.)