Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Weight of Life


Tonight, I have an overwhelming sense of despair, a vague desire to just disappear, to suffer amnesia, to be someone else, satisfied with a simple life. But it's an inward feeling. The world has not shifted place since yesterday or this morning.

In fact, it's that simple stasis that I identify as my trigger. I wait ...

Perhaps it's all in my head. Not... not that waiting is not a condition of my present life. Just that focusing on that wait is something I alone can control. But I don't.

I wait to hear back from my agency project leader, regarding my second stage proposal (she's just back from three weeks on the road). That second stage contract is a BIG DEAL, the biggest deal of my life. It represents stability for a couple years, a good salary not only for me, but for three or four others. It represents the chance for me to take my ideas to the next stage, to practical applications. The chance to actually build a sustainable research-based business that I can be proud of. That's big.

It's not that I lack confidence that this will happen. It's just that I wait for it to happen. And, if it didn't I'd be okay. For me, the waiting is worst. It's like anticipating the collapse of a house of cards. Once it falls, you just pick them back up and start rebuilding. Picking up the pieces is fine... just waiting for them to fall drives me batty.

I wait to hear about whether I'll be interviewed for the research position across the seas. Apparently, their expectation of a hiring committee rendering a short list in a couple weeks was overly optimistic. Why do I even care about that post? (Because I want so much to feel that I have not been entirely banished from the world of academia, even if I'm not certain that is where I wish to be).

And I wait to hear the results of my other two recent proposals. I wait to receive job applications for the three positions I've recently advertised (well, sent around through my channels--I'll formally advertise them if need be).

I wait to hear back from the seller's agent on a few issues regarding the building I wish to purchase as office space for my company. Then, I suppose I'll wait for their response to my offer.

But... what am I really waiting for? Whose answers will change my life? Truth is, I have, right now, most of the things I have thought important in life: a wonderful wife, whom I am truly still in love with; three beautiful, delightful, charming, intelligent (and sometimes infuriating) boys, growing up in part under my tutelage; I'm a dad; I have a house, with a mortgage payment so laughably small in comparison to what we've paid in the past that I'd be hard-pressed to imagine it possible for us to lose; I've got savings in the bank, enough at least for us to consider remodeling our kitchen, and putting in a new paving-stone patio in the backyard.

Yeah, there is still some lingering bitterness and sorrow over leaving the Academy. I guess part of it is the unsettled nature of where I am. Being an entrepreneur isn't exactly a cake walk. It's quite often overwhelming, daunting. Much better feelings I admit than despair. I'll take the weight of life over the weight of dejection anytime; that doesn't make it any lighter.

Yes, this too shall pass. In the morning, a new day shall dawn. Friday I head to the lakehouse. Rocketmom and the boys are already there for the week. I'll spend the weekend there, and hopefully forget these worries for a couple days.

1 comment:

Lilian said...

I hope the weekend at the lake house does help, my friend! The weight of life is heavy too, but I agree that it feels way better than the weight of despair -- I've felt that one a bit for the past two years.

Life is like a roller-coaster, just in extra slow motion...