I made the Quail stuffed peppers for dinner last night. While I was cooking I started thinking about the two different sides of my life–personal and professional–and how they are so opposite. I feel like two different people. I have always felt confident and on track in my personal life, but my professional one lacks focus and that sense of being sure. I met a boy and fell in love, we got married–I know that for sure. Professionally I am stuck in a dead end job and I am dying to get out, but how do I do it? What do I want? I have all this creative energy, but I don’t know how to focus it and turn it into a living. I talk to friends who have done it –who have made a career for themselves building on their strengths and creativity and talents–I feel like the only one that doesn’t know how.
I have this bad habit on of riding home on the train wondering if I did a good enough job of being a “person” all day at work. Was I ok? Did I hold it together? Did I do any relevant work? Did I act interested enough? I think part of this stems from the broken escalator at 34th Street, and the sense of vertigo that occurs when you have to walk down it. But maybe not. I actually do this all the time. I question what I am doing and how I am doing it. It’s like taking an empty jar of pickles out of the refrigerator–is it really empty? Did I miss a pickle somehow? Do other people find empty pickle jars in their refrigerators? Do they pour the juice out slowly to savor the smell even though they hate pickles? Is this a real thing I am doing?
This all seems unnecessarily philosophical and silly to me, but it is something that happens all the time. Lately I keep catching myself in moments and questioning the very merit of my being and my life. Maybe it is this year and the fact that I am now 29 and married, yet still feeling very unfulfilled in my career. Shouldn’t I know what I am doing already? Or what I want to be doing? I am so happy at home, bumbling along in my day-to-day life of cooking dinner and watching movies with my new husband. We’re also about to switch our bedroom (which frees up a lot of additional space in our apartment) and I am enjoying making plans with him–plans for us, for our future, for our home. But what about my professional future? Can I live my life being so happy on one side and so miserable on the other? It seems so obvious–change your job, change your life–but it isn’t that simple. I have spent years going from one dead end position to another, which leaves me with no discernible career to speak of. I keep applying and applying for positions and getting nowhere.
I don’t know what I expect to get out of sharing this. Or why making stuffed peppers put me in a tailspin. Maybe I just need to acknowledge that I am stuck. I am so stuck. And I need to figure out a way to change that.