Sunday, February 24, 2013

job identity

It's been almost a month since I had to quit my job and it's been an interesting process of waiting, hoping, searching, and processing what it's like to sit in this space between jobs.

I've had the conversation many times about hating when people ask, "What do you do?" It feels like a loaded question. I'd rather people be interested in who I am than what I do. I know I lean that way because to this point in my life, work has been work. A means to an end. I've had a job I enjoyed despite the stress. I've had a job I didn't enjoy but that afforded me lots of opportunities and experiences that made it worth it. I've had a job that allowed me to get on my feet, provide for myself, and go back to school. All of these have been things I've done, but not really a big part of who I am.

With all this time I've had with no job to fill my time, I've realized how much of my identity has simply been rooted in the fact that I have a job. It's made me feel like an adult, a contributing member of society, and in a strange way I've felt "whole." I guess because I've survived the D-word and I've been able to take care of myself, on my own, independently, and that has been empowering.

So.... I'm figuring out how to live in this space temporarily. I'm figuring out how to feel like a contributing member of society while not working. I'm figuring out new places to gather value from. It is a strange place to be. But honestly, I'm looking forward to the day I get a piece of my identity back.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


"It doesn't interest me what you do for a living,
I want to know what you ache for. 
It doesn't interest me how old you are,
I want to know if you are willing to risk looking like a fool for love,
for your dreams,
for the adventure of being alive.
I want to know if you can live with failure,
yours and mine. 
It doesn't interest me where you live or how rich you are,
I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair,
weary and bruised to the bone,
and be sweet to the ones you love.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and truly like the company you keep 
in the empty moments of your life."

-Jon Blais

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

confronting happiness

Sometimes therapy blows my mind. And it's not because of anything crazy special. It's because someone sits across from me and says words I've said to myself or wondered or thought...but they just fall differently on me.

That happened today. My therapist pointed out all these good and happy things I've been talking about. She reflected back to me the light that's coming out of my face. And then she asked me if I'm allowed to be happy.

I'm being confronted with so much good and happiness from all sides in my life right now...and it's overwhelming in the best and most confusing way at the same time.

I'm being forced to sit with the fact that I am allowed to be happy. And just because I don't remember what this has felt like for a long time, doesn't mean I'm not allowed to experience it fully. Doesn't mean it's not authentic. Doesn't mean it's not real. I can't express how crazy huge it feels to sit face-to-face with that. You would think that after all the **** of the last few years that I would be running full-tilt into happiness. That I would feel like I deserved it. That I would dive in head first and swim around until I couldn't breathe anymore.

I'm working on it. I am staring it right in the face and I'm trying to let it conquer me. I'm allowed to be happy. It is possible for me to be happy. Just because it feels like new territory, and it's terrifying, and it's overwhelming, doesn't mean that it's not authentic.

So that's it. I'm confronting happiness. I'm confronting all the fear and control and experiences I bring to the table and I'm working on letting happiness win. Because I deserve it. And I'm allowed to be happy. And until I believe that 100%, I will believe the percentage that I discovered today and I will work on owning more and more until I've reached the full 100.