The Future

What is it, how do I get there, can I win it? I am interested in far too many things and the results have been nothing short of spectacularly unimpressive. Right now I’m working for 12 dollars an hour, 40 hours a week, as a data support technician. Which is a fancy way of saying I work in Microsoft Excel all day updating Accounts Receivable spreadsheets. I live with my parents, I am buried in student loan debt, and I have little if any notion of what I want to do next. How did I even get here?

To keep a long, complex, and ultimately auto-exculpatory story brief, I’ll say that somewhere between August of 2009 and March 2010, my second year of graduate school, the comfortable determinism and goal orientation I had enjoyed and relied upon throughout my life fell completely apart. I had no idea what came after the MA, and indeed I still don’t. I’ve traveled, read, thought, caroused, and supped enough  that I should have at least SOME notion of the direction my life is to take next but it eludes me still, without explanation of even the most tenuous sort, I can’t even rationalize it internally.

I admire people who don’t get carried away with all this metaphysical flim flam, replete with heavily trodden, threadbare questions like, “how can I make a difference?” and “how do I know what I really want to do?” The people I admire most right now, particularly from among my contemporaries, are the ones who simply DO. They may confront very similar issues or carry on a similar internal dialog, but unlike me, who seems unable to shake this plague of indecisive timidity, these people have simply gone out and done stuff. They remain committed to an idea or plan long enough to see it through –  touching on perhaps the most disconcerting aspect of my current slump. I find it increasingly hard to maintain focus on or commitment too certain activities or plans of action such as trail running or building a website.

So basically the moral of this story is: I once had dreams. At some point those dreams evaporated into a haze of uncertainty and self-recrimination, I would like that vision back sooner than later, but I think things will eventually work out. They better, because if I’m stuck in spreadsheets for the rest of my life I will be forced to compensate with unprecedentedly reckless, thrill seeking behaviors.

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One comment

  1. Josie

    Thank you for pretty much summing up my thoughts exactly. You’re not alone in this, Devin. You’re not alone.

    Not only am I not content, but I do not know how to be content.

    Something I need to work on: Finding joy in the simple things in life. The morning cup of coffee. Some guy wearing an insanely tacky NASCAR t-shirt. Making my dad laugh. I think I should live for these moments. Not some ambiguous thing that I’ll never wrap my head around. Thoughts?

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