My eyes burn from staring at a never-ending stream of legal agreements all day long. My stomach feels queasy from too much coffee. It’s nearly midnight, and I came to a cafe hoping to quickly take care of some loose ends at work and then spend some time writing a post for this site, but it took me way too long to finish up working and now I’m just plain exhausted. All I can think about is how tired I am and how much work I have to do tomorrow morning and how early I have to get up. I don’t have the energy to try and be witty or creative or erudite.
And I guess that’s the problem. The years have gone by, and I have continued to waste time at 9 to 5 jobs (or 8 to 10) in which I have no real interest, passion or talent. But those jobs still consume energy, and the older I get, the less energy I have to expend overall, which means that I have even less and less energon in reserve to figure out what the hell I am doing in life. Which makes me start to feel like the longer I wait, the more unlikely it would seem that I will ever figure it out. (Yes, I said energon. And when I say that, I mean 80′s vintage energon, not 21st century CGI energon. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, don’t worry about it, because I am a humongous dork.)
On the other hand, I could just stop working. I could, in liz’s words, simply just stop walking. Stop and be still.
But here’s the thing…even if you stop walking, everyone else just KEEPS ON RUNNING. Can you imagine if you were in a pack of runners (imagine the start of a marathon) and then you simply just abruptly stopped? Worst case, you’d be trampled and die in a bloody mangled heap. At the least, you’d end up alone, as runner after runner passes you as they head off to wherever it is that they’re going.
I’ve been walking/running, but at a slow and halting pace. Some of the “runners” are starting to fade from view. Recently I heard that a classmate from law school made partner at his law firm. He’s one of the first, but he certainly won’t be the last, and as the years go by, more and more of my former classmates and colleagues will take their places as captains of the legal industry. And, even though I don’t really have any interest in becoming a partner at a law firm, I still feel a pang of envy for that guy, because he’s already gotten to where he’s been heading and I’m just wandering around in the woods, trying to figure out what direction to go.
So I can’t really bring myself to completely stop moving. Maybe that would be better, but, like a shark, I have this compulsive need to not come to a complete stop. Maybe it’s just peer pressure, but with the entire world running this race, I guess I’m just hoping that if I simply keep moving, that somehow I might accidentally end up in a desirable place. Because I’m sure as hell not happy with where I am now.