Saturday, September 29, 2007

the other side of the fence

i love my job. i hate my job.

i'm so confused.

no, i haven't changed my mind. i really do enjoy my job. i like the work, i like the responsibility, i like the money. most days, i even like the people.

these are not small things, as i spend more time working (and getting to and from work) than anything else in my life.

work ain't optional. well, work is, but the money isn't. so off i go, day after day, leaving behind a long list of things that i know nothing about.

mrs. spaceneedl and i attended curriculum night at the kids' school this week. the teachers talked brightly about this project and that assignment. they asked about the amount of homework, and encouraged us to help copy edit the little essays the children are doing.

"it helps them start to get their thoughts organized, which of course is the key to good writing."

that's when it hit me: i'm a writer. i get paid to write every day. and i've taught my kids exactly nothing about writing. zero. i didn't even know they were writing essays.

there were other things the teachers talked about that i was oblivious to. the particulars are less important than the realization that my work is over there (points a long way thataway), but my life, the reason i work, is over here.

and there's no way to reconcile the two.

i should be getting a lot more exercise. i should be spending more time with my family. i should have some rudimentary idea what goes on in my children's lives, don'tcha think?

a comparable job will demand a comparable commitment, but i could add a couple hours to each and every day if i wasn't obliged to drive so damn much. the risk is giving up a job i truly like (for the first time in forever) for the unknown.

these are grown-up problems that require grown-up decisions, to benefit two people who will be grown-ups in the blink of an eye.

and while i love my job, it will never love me back.

i just had an epiphany.
(painting courtesy of leif nilsson, nilsson studio)


Bon said...

ah ... ain't nothin' like a good old fashioned open house to make you question your choices in life.

parents everywhere must be having this inner conversation right about now.

i know i am ...

spaceneedl said...

i neglected to mention, our offices are moving one exit further south in november. this will add at least 20 minutes to my commute each day.