Wednesday, February 24, 2010

vocation

Details about my job rarely make an appearance in this blog. And that's intentional. I have tried to make an effort over the last two years to define myself by things other than my career. Initially I was highly ambitious, longing to finish the coursework for my PhD, write a dissertation and land an executive position in my field. But I realized about two years ago, while sitting with my folks in a Starbucks on the Lower East Side, that none of that was going to make me happy. I needed to figure out who I was and what things (aptitudes, values, dreams, interests) were critical. My career is an important part of that profile, but it is only that - a part. And I had rested on its laurels for too long.

I think the problem was, I had originally wanted to act. And yet, for a number of reasons, I changed direction. And it's a good thing. Let me apologize now to all of my readers who are artists loving other artists - but I think that's a very hard road and one I'm not sure I could have survived. It was important to me, that I had some sense of normalcy and the best way for me to do that was to find a different path.

The problem was, I loved the concept of vocation. I've always said if I hadn't fallen in love (and was perhaps a better Catholic) I would have been a very good nun. I at least like the idea that one is called to a higher purpose. This is certainly something you see in the holy orders, but it's also something you find among artists. And after walking away from the arts, I felt a void. A lack of purpose. I was missing a vocation and it's something I missed for over ten years.

But, as said, I now realize that my "purpose" can be something outside the tight constraints of my career. Maybe, just like my mum, I have been called to be a wife and a mother. Perhaps, due to time and circumstance, my execution of that purpose is different - but it doesn't mean the calling is any less the same. This would explain why I am at such peace with where we are today. Even while surrounded by noise, congestion, and $2500 suits, we have managed to build a simple life. A life that revolves around themes like love, nourishment, creativity, security and learning. Feeding that existence and creating an environment in which my family can thrive - that is my purpose.

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