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5.30.2011

carry on.

i didn't want to get out of bed this morning. which is how i know things are not quite right.

there are others hints too, i suppose.

the ever-deepening lines on my forehead.

my right eye that's been twitching intermittently for a month a half now.

a nagging lower back pain.

i've had two jobs for so long now that i can't remember a time when i wasn't rushing form one to the other.

but i'm in the long-transitional-period in which i whittle my way down to one.

and so for a month now, a month? more than a month? i've been working 50 hour weeks. and i'm spent.

does it sound as though i'm complaining?

i am.

i've gotten really, really good at complaining recently.

the funny thing is that as it all nears to an end it doesn't get easier as you'd suspect, but harder.

i feel like i'm gonna need a week off. to soak in epsom salts. to eat nothing but kale and fruit (i'd never actually do this). to reset the body to a normal, healthy state.

plenty of people work 50 hour weeks you say? 80 hour weeks? i know, i know! how do they do it?

i offer only this up in my defense...these jobs....as wonderful as they are, as much as i've learned from them, as thankful as i am for the money they deposit into my now growing savings account, they are not my dream. they are not the career. i want to be a writer, an actor, one of those band groupies, an activist, a presidential staffer...oh hell, i don't know. but something more. and so in addition to those 50 hours is all the time traveling to and from home so i can sit in front of this little screen and write. and in doing so unearth my future--or so i hope.

as anyone who's ever had an eating disorder, or eating issue really, knows....they're all about delay, avoidance. the mantra becomes oh well, when i lose 5 lbs, 10 lbs, i'll do it. until then, no. and if those pounds are never lost the thing is never done. and in ones' path is a wake of all the things set aside, neglected, perpetually put off--a life, usually. a life deferred.

with work consuming all of my time, i've had to put things off. and i don't want to. i want to charge forward, but there isn't the time. and i know the reason for putting things off is different than it was 3, 4, 5 years ago, but because it is familiar and terrifying territory, panic ensues.

up, there goes my right eye. twitching again.

this is all to say if i've seemed (continue to seem) a little bit silent, you know the reason why. and i humbling beg your patience.


oh lord, i just wrote all that, and today is memorial day...a day to celebrate and remember those who've given the ultimate sacrifice for this country. i'm a boob. forget everything i've just said and think about that--the true spirit of this holiday.

31 comments:

becky said...

"as anyone who's ever had an eating disorder, or eating issue really, knows....they're all about delay, avoidance. the mantra becomes oh well, when i lose 5 lbs, 10 lbs, i'll do it. until then, no. and if those pounds are never lost the thing is never done. and in ones' path is a wake of all the things set aside, neglected, perpetually put off--a life, usually. a life deferred."

For me this problem is not an eating disorder--it is anxiety. "I'll do that when I get better--when I worry less" and the sad thing is these days, these days of actually doing it, so often do not come. Too many times. Too many opportunities slipped, then rolled, right by. Too many days lying low in a comfort zone and emotions filtered--but not lived.

I want to thank-you, actually, for all your writing about counselling that you do--for the path and recovery it has shown you. It has, in many ways, helped me too--not to seek help for the same problem but perhaps a lesser thing--a lesser ugly thing--in my mind. Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you for that. And I'll always come back to reading your words--however sparse they may become on your transition. But please, never feel obligated--never feel a pressure--to post when it just doesn't feel right. This is your own creation on your own time. I hope everything goes okay. And damn, you have a career ahead of you. A flourishing, honest career.

JuJu said...

wow, i'm pretty much in the same situation as you! i didn't want to get out of bed for some time now and for me that is also a sign that something is "wrong"! this morning was especially tough for me - but i got up after all and crossed a few things off my to do list! getting things done makes me feel good! thank you for being so honest!!! i'm sure that you will find the right path to your destiny, even if it takes some time! your writing is amazing! have a great day ! juju

JuJu said...

wow, i'm pretty much in the same situation as you! i didn't want to get out of bed for some time now and for me that is also a sign that something is "wrong"! this morning was especially tough for me - but i got up after all and crossed a few things off my to do list! getting things done makes me feel good! thank you for being so honest!!! i'm sure that you will find the right path to your destiny, even if it takes some time! your writing is amazing! have a great day ! juju

Stevie Leigh said...

Sweet girl. I am praying for you today as I celebrate the freedom that does not come free. I'll pray for freedom for you from something that I, too, struggled with - eating disorders that are crippling, demeaning, painful reminders that we are human and fragile.

Rest in the reminder that you are not alone, and that things do get better! :)

Rachael said...

Those people that work 80 hours a week either a) love their job or b) are doing so to support their family which is a noble cause and an extra boost to go through those extra long days. You can't compare yourself to them. Our struggles will always pale in comparison to the suffering of others but it doesn't our suffering isn't suffering. There's a time and a place for sucking it up and having a better attitude but devoting nearly all your waking time to 2 jobs NOT in your career path is hard no matter which way you slice it.
You'll be in my prayers.

A Serenade for Solitude said...

To be aware of yourself and all the complexities is a gift. Be kind to yourself. I think you are on your way to moving into the arena of "what you really want," as long as you acknowledge and continue to move forward.

You are an inspiration this morning. I, too, struggle with the fact that I'm always putting off my aspirations by complaining that I haven't enough time, all these other things are stealing my time--blah, blah, blah. But then I get down on myself some, because I realize these other circumstances don't excuse my lack of determination. I'm the only one who can chase my dream.

Oh, the trouble with dreams. But gee, the trouble sure makes the possibilities in life plenty exciting.

xx, Cassie

Anait said...

I know exactly how you feel...I used to work several jobs, too. I would wake up in the morning and lay in bed, thinking of excuses not to go to work, not to get up and face the day. It is hard to work at something you are not truly passionate about, but just remember that it is a means, a stepping stone, to who you truly want to be....and when you get there, it will all be just that much sweeter.

Stay strong, I believe in you! And I know you will accomplish great things.

-Maria- said...

less is more- look at the Europeans, they wouldn't dream of working 80hrs a wk or even 50- you should never feel bad for wanting more rest and a time for vacation.

I just read this dedication in the beginning of one of Roald Dahl's books-
"This book is dedicated with affection and sympathy to all young people (including my own son and three daughters) who are going through that long and difficult metamorphosis when they are no longer children and have not yet become adults."

For me that was so encouraging, this is not a new "problem", people have been feeling confused, anxious and excited about figuring out their future for ages. Especially at this in between phase;)

I hope you do go enjoy a epsom salt soak:)!

emilia. said...

Just remember you are going to win all of this. You can do it. And you should say you are a writer. because you are. (it's so exciting)!

Jenni Austria Germany said...

the europe thing that maria said is true. when i tell my friends here how much americans work they think i am insane. especially my spanish friends who siesta every day ;)

Angelica said...

Meg,

I've totally been there! Back in San Diego i used to go through my days hating every hour that I worked, thinking I was wasting my life at a meaningless job. I complained but all I could do was continue on that job search for something better. Even when I was tired, I sent in a application here or an application there. It wasn't fun and to be quite honest I never thought i'd leave that uninspiring job.

Ultimately, I used my savings and I took a volunteer trip to South Africa for 3 weeks. I needed inspiration. Then after I came back, I took an unpaid internship in San Francisco. Once my savings ran out I began my job search. It took me 4 months but I finally found a job. It's not my dream job, but it's in the industry that I'd like to be in.

I'm happy today, being in a new city in a better job, but I'm still trying to figure it all out. What do I really want to do? And I think everyone is. Especially at our age-mid 20's.

So, I guess I just wanted to let you know that you're not alone in your struggle. It will get better! Baby steps. :)


Angelica

christine said...

You are already a writer. Hugs!

(says the girl who is still in her nightgown on the couch watching sitc re-runs. so, i totally get it.)

dull boy said...

careful meg, i started with a twitching eye, now its my whole head...

Jandy xx said...

Like i always say, when i visit here, I love your honesty! Sometimes we all just need to have a little pitty party, and yes, poor you for working 50 hour weeks! who cares if others do 80! 50 is massive! but dont forget, after your pitty party, you should also be proud of your self

Ana* said...

so I guess we are and are not on the same page. I don't have two jobs. I am a full-time college student who works full-time as well. It's stressful and tiresome and sometimes I daydream about quitting everything: my job and my education, and buying a one way ticket to Italy... so I can eat a (lot) of pasta, fall in love, breath, walk to places, read books, learn a new language, etc.

I am not the best person to advice on this matter, but the reminder of why I am working full-time/going to school sometimes does the trick and then I feel like superwoman again. like everything is possible, and it really is.

withoutizy said...

Hello m'dear. I am your newest, biggest fan. I love the freshness and the raw truth that comes out of your posts.

In feb something pretty terrible happened to my family and my overseas trip was cut a few months short. I came home to support my family (and withered away my savings). I got pretty down about it - due to the earthquake here it was almost impossible to find a job and I literally injected thousands of dollars into sorting out my dad's life. But I learned (with the help of a fantastic book) that I am privileged because I have a choice. I chose to help. I chose to spend my money that way. No one forced me, and maybe I felt a tiny bit morally obligated to do so, but I still chose to. I stopped feeling moped and I owned that choice and felt happy I was able to make it.

The book I read on the flight home from Calcutta to an earthquake destroyed city, and home, was A Thousand Splendid Suns. I'm not sure if you've read it, but you really should. It's my favourite book ever. I named it my perspective book. It showed me that there are billions, and I repeat billions, of people in this world without the luxury of choice. It gave me perspective, which is a really great gift.

I appreciate sometimes life is hard, working two jobs is in no way easy, but for you (I hope) it's a temporary thing. Something that is a wee stepping stone on to bigger and better things for you. So, as frustrating as it can be, and as much as you have every single right to complain, treasure the fact you do have a choice in this matter, and own that girl!

And read that book.

xx

Karls said...

Totally with Becky... I know it as anxiety and I've totally been there... hell, I was there yesterday. Learning to live in the 'now' can be so difficult but so rewarding. Acceptance is a rough journey - I know! It's worht it though! When you believe you deserve and you allow, things start to shift.

http://karlosophies.blogspot.com/2011/05/happiness-is-in-eye-of-beholder.html

You are the gold. Love your work doll!

BrightEyedWashingtonian said...

Have you tried yoga??? Yoga fixes everything - mind, body, and soul. I swear. ;)

The Lewicutt's est 2006 said...

Ah, sounds like you need something more challenging/fulfilling. It's difficult to maintain your happiness when you're not fulfilled in something you spend so much time doing.

My father always taught me to stay in a job for a few years, absorb all I could from it, then take that and apply to a new position.... I try to live by that. Eventually I want to apply it all to an entrepreneurship, but I've still got quite a bit of learning to do before I can do that!

Hang in there! And those people that work 80 hours a week... they may not complain, but I have my doubts that they're fulfilled/happy...

Juliette Shannon said...

Just a simple thankyou for your writing. Honest inspiration. It travels all the way to the land of the long white cloud and keeps me drawing.

Kia Kaha: stand strong.

Courtney said...

Oh Meg, you're no boob. And you know, sometimes its nice to let it all out and complain every once in a while, goodness knows I've done my fair share of that. My poor mom, anytime we talk its just a major venting session for me, I'm sure she'd like to hear me talk about something other than me being tired and hating my job/school. Sometimes life just isn't very much fun, is it? What gets me through is the hope that maybe it won't always be this way, that one day I'll look back and say "oh geez, I'm glad THATs over."

Platypodian said...

you deserve a week to yourself-- relaxing and pampering!! :)

Little Tree Vintage said...

wow, i relate to this 100%. I am also working 2 jobs, 6 days a week and I am starting to just feel the exhaustion that comes with all of that..mentally, physically, emotionally I am a mess! I totally know how you feel...If it makes any difference, reading your blog gets me through my mornings! Thank you for being you!

Kelly said...

You've put in your dues, and it sounds like you're working yourself down to the bone. You deserve that salt bath (though I wouldn't attempt to eat only kale) and a rest!

Erin said...

And it is because of those men and women who fight for us that we are able to consider our dreams. You'll make it. :)

Rachel said...

Ugh that eye twitch thing is the WORST. But so is feeling like you're flailing around yet not making any progress toward your dream because in the mean time you have to do silly things like pay rent. We'll all figure it out one day (I hope), but in the mean time, at least we arent having to wear jackets!

Mallory said...

Sorry. That last comment was a mistake.

I was going to say...everyone is a boob once in a while.

Jo said...

Oh Meg, I have been right there, too. Truthfully, I sometimes still feel that I still have one foot in the door to that place. That place of not quite being where I want to be. Not being quite who I want to be.
Make no mistake, and know this now...you are a writer. You are an artist. You are the person you want to be, and you are working your way to a place where you will be completely happy...and where that annoying eye twitch will be a thing of the past.
xox

Days Careen said...

I think there is a point where we wonder why we're there- how we got there and how we get out beyond it again.

I too am at a similar stage where in reality I'm not doing what I want to do but it's a means to an end/goal and a necessary step in the direction I want to head in.

I think being in your 20's is all about that-suddenly education finishes and society expects us to know what to do next for the best and so we begin to expect that of ourselves- 20's is working out what we want to do and how to get there and on the way having to follow a way of life or career that isn't necessarily 'us'.

I reckon it's time to be excited though as all the possibilities are still invitingly ahead, anything in life could happen, we have not yet 'made our beds and have to lie them', we can change our minds and go this way and that because we are still young enough to have that whimsical luxury.

Congratulations by the way on the recent article about your blog (few posts above this one), honestly I do think it won't be long before your doing what you want to do, if it is writing you want to pursue then you have the perfect platform here to take it from and in reference to something that was said in article, this blog should be sponsored as your writing is always beautiful and inspiring.

meg said...

Knowing that you are able to write as beautifully as you do while working 50 hours a week makes, me appreciate each post even more... I really do read each one like a short story of perfect prose or as unrhymed poems.

You are an inspiration (:

Jennifer M. said...

I know what you mean about working long hours. I get grumpy just working 40. I've started realizing that it's not the working that's actually bothering me though, it's the not working on creative things that bothers me. Working a boring desk job to help someone else get rich is just mind-numbing and dull. I spend most of that time dreaming up things I'd rather be doing with my time. Who ever decided working for a living was the norm anyway?