Tuesday, January 15, 2013

is it just me?

I think there comes a point in every women's life when they face the terrifying question "holy crap, am I turning into my mother?".  I guess I just didn't think that point would come so soon.  I'm 24 (newly 24, thank you very much!), why on earth am I thinking this you ask?  Well, I guess it 's mostly because I am not working in the field that I love:  writing.  And yes many people my age are facing that same crappy realization that they probably aren't going to land their dream job straight out of college like twenty-somethings in 90's movies did.  But working in a field I am passionate about has always been important to me.  Doing something that, okay, maybe didn't make a huge difference in the world but at least is something that made me happy and content.  
I remember when I was in my third year of college visiting home from Boston, my mom was driving and the question came up if she wanted to do something else in her life.  If there is some dream that she imagined for herself that really didn't pan out, professionally that is.  She told me that of course there are things that didn't exactly go as she imagined in her dreams. My mom entered the medical industry as a registered dietitian because she liked to help people.  She was passionate about fitness and food and wanted to show people how they could make a difference in their health and lifestyle without medicine or drastic measures.  But, after 15 years in that profession, my mom found there was less leverage than she would have liked, so she switched gears (while staying in the medical field) and now does something totally different at the same institution she started her career.  She isn't really passionate about her current position; she isn't helping people like she originally was and wanted to when she started; and I know she would much rather be doing something else.  When she told me how she felt like different things had taken her to this point in her life (having kids, wanting stability, the hopeful thought of retirement) I had this hope that things might be different for me in my quest.  I admire my mother more than anyone else in the world, but I had this hope that I could get to that place of happiness, stability and also enjoy what I do--essentially, not have to sacrifice one thing for the other.
But now I see that things might be different than I imagined and more compromise than I had hoped for.  I work at the same institution as my mom.  I don't really like my job, but I get through it and do it.  It absolutely isn't the worst thing in the world and, as I have expressed before, I sometimes feel a lot of guilt for not liking what I do because I know many people (especially in this day and age) would kill for a job as secure as mine.  But for me the passion has always outweighed security and comfort.  I am a very logical person and I don't like to flee from things just because I don't like them.  But it is very hard to think that I may never get the opportunity to make my passion my profession.

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