“I never knew until that moment how bad it could hurt to lose something you never really had.” -Kevin Arnold (portrayed by actor Fred Savage) from television sitcom‘the Wonder Years’
Last week, I was demoted at my job. Hours were cut; pay will be lost; tears streamed down my face as I left my office for the day. I am thankful that I wasn’t fired (and rather surprised, actually) but this was still a blow to my gut. Walking out into the Monday sunshine, I didn’t immediately think about the bills I will not be able to afford now; I thought about the dreams I had for myself and how they were, in mere moments, flushed away. I’ll admit- I hate my job. I’m not good at it. My brain and fingers are meant for creating moving photographic images and fingering piano keys, not data entry and rearranging paper files. Despite not being happy with this arrangement, I worked almost 60 hours a week for the past couple of months, exhaustingly pushing myself to complete my work as best and effectively as I could.
I worked so much with plans to save some money; to get out the current situation I once found myself in with hopes of moving somewhere shiny and new, continuing my education and tackling a job that not only I’m good at but I also love- basically, for the umpteenth time in my short life, I wanted to start over. Begin fresh. Create anew. I’ve been fighting for this dream for a while; for weeks, months, a whole year. The people surrounding me have heard me speak nothing but this made-up future I had for myself. I fought against people I love passionately and whole-heartedly defending it. In my head, this ultimate plan was perfect and foolproof and I was going to stop at nothing in order to see this dream carry through. It is kind of funny how a five minute conversation can change everything,
As much as I encourage my friends and loved ones to conquer their fears and live out there dreams, I wonder how do you know when to call it quits? How do you push certain goals and wishes aside? And then afterwards, how do you forge ahead? How do you kick your heart’s most inner desires to the curb and wake up the following morning with a smile on your face? Are you accepting the fact that you’re a quitter or just (and maybe finally) growing up, accepting reality?
I don’t want to call myself a quitter. I’m sure that no one wants to be referred as the one who simply gave up. But for the past few days of serious concentration, I am starting to realize that something greater might holding my fate cards, waiting patiently to deal out the next round of amazing adventures and trials. Maybe it is time to move on. There are other wonderful and beautiful things out there in the world to see and experience, things greater than I could even imagine. As hurt as I am, I have faith that everything will eventually be okay. I may not see this path clearly now but I will squint my eyes and pace myself slowly until I reach the next fork in the road.