Sometimes lately, I feel like I’m emerging from a wreck that I call my life. It just feels that way, and maybe my life isn’t the wreck I think it is. However, it feels like one. Particularly when you start using measurements, like income, and what legacy have I produced, how successful are my kids, will I retire comfortably, how many close relationships do I have, how many times a week do I go out with friends?
Maybe in some regards I can say that my life is a wreck, not that it matters. It is what it is. On the other hand, it is changing significantly. My getting laid off last October and then what happened to me on Christmas day last year have altered my life in ways I didn’t see coming. What does that feel like you might ask? Like my life was a train wreck…
and, I am finally crawling out of the debris of that wreck. I have been in the life I have lived for over 5 decades. So all of that “stuff” I learned in early family life, all my ways of being in relationships with others, how I functioned in the world under whatever hat I wear has now been changed. Sad as it is to say, that wreckage I called home, with all its sharp edges, insecure footing, and toxic elements are what were familiar to me. I lived there. Now I am climbing out, and frankly, it scares the hell out of me.
Since getting laid off I have realized I will not be a carpenter again as a full time profession. My former boss finally made that clear when he posted the job I did for him in the local sources. Which is okay. I am very close to that place of expressing my thankfulness to him, and I am very grateful that my life has a new career direction. With that however are new ways of being.
I no longer work “9 to 5.” I no longer am the employee. I am in fact, the owner of my own business, I am the boss and employee. And, I no longer work manual labor. So I wear a suit jacket to meetings now that I never even went to before. I make up bid letters contracting my services to clients. I care about their presence in this world, and have a skill set that help them market their values. No more saw dust, loud noises from nail guns and saws, no more working in the rain. No more any one else determining how much I earn. This is all so new that sometimes it feels surreal, as I sit in a meeting giving a presentation on web security relative to web design that until the conversation rolls around to the people part of it I feel like I’m watching a movie instead of making more money to do what I’m doing than I was previously paid.
Another new way of being is school. Just my being a student is a story, a long story about what it has meant and means to me, and the changes that will bring as I get the official knowledge of work I am already doing. The education will help, and I am grateful for the opportunity to get re-training. Another part of the story!
So maybe my life was a train wreck. Do I need a definitive answer? No. I know it feels this way at times, and I know that feelings aren’t necessarily true or the best guide to go by. I can however acknowledge that they are there, look at them, and respond to them if I need to. And lately that just means feeling the fear of launching out into new territory away from the debris, and doing it anyway.