Farewell to the Ghost of Christmas Future

As is typical for me, with a new dawn springs a fresh slate on the "mood" front, and I'm in a much brighter place than yesterday's depression-fest. Still facing the same problems with figuring out what to do with my life, but it's not psyching me out quite so badly.

Photo credit: rayarooo (Flickr)

Tomorrow had dawned into today, and the black cloud has dissipated, leaving the stark realities behind. I still have to figure out what's next. I've had advice from several corners, most of which has served only to make me cranky again. That isn't fair at all, and I'm actually doing pretty well at getting myself past the grumpiness and taking advice in the spirit that it's offered. I'm still just not sure about anything.

Am I failing to find jobs because I'm selling myself short and not applying for stuff at a similar level to my last job? Or am I failing because I'm under-qualified and need more training and education? Is the weirdness of my background coming through too strongly in my resume, not emphasizing my skills well? Or am I not doing a good job convincing people that my differences are strengths?

It's still confusing, is my point, and I'm still not certain what it is that I need to be doing. Add to that a complete lack of insight into what it is that I want to be doing, and I'm kind of a mess.

I had meant to take this time where I'm getting unemployment benefits and use it to position myself for a career that I actually wanted. Six months of partially-subsidized existence is a lot. But I haven't done anything that I need to do in order to figure my life out, and now we're to the point where we would like to be making long-term plans like buying a house, but we're stuck by my indecision.

I hate making decisions. Fully-committing to a course of action closes off all other actions, and I've got a good imagination: choosing a thing means losing all those other things that I can see so clearly in my mind. Sure, it's gaining a real thing from a sea of phantasms, but those possibilities are almost better than the real thing.

They're hope. They're the promise of the future. Without that promise, what's the point?

Which of course is ridiculous, when taken to its logical limit, as I'm doing right now. If you never make a choice, then all those possibilities remain ephemeral forever. You can dream of their sweetness, but never taste it. And while you're dreaming of sweetness, the things around you spoil.

I wish that knowing that made it easier for me to bid adieu to those dreams, but it doesn't. I still hate making choices. But it's time to cowboy up: I'm miserable, I'm making those around me miserable, and I'm standing between my family and our dreams of the future. No job, no house, and we have such dreams for our home. Until I let go of a few of mine, at least for the near term, by choosing a career path, we won't have that kitchen with the concrete countertops, or the playroom where you can see the kids while you're making dinner. No swing set in the back yard or place to chuck the ball for the dog. Just... limbo.

I turn thirty-four tomorrow. Maybe I'll get myself a sense of direction for my birthday.