I’ve mentioned that I’ve been writing in a text file for weeks. The following is at least two months old now, but I’m in a place to continue the conversation with myself publicly now. So the words might be dated — my birthday is in April, for example — but it means the conversation can move at a faster speed than it would have had I posted this when I originally wrote it.
my birthday and rachael being half-done with school has me thinking a lot about the future. i’m not yet in the right place. i don’t know yet what the right place actually is. or where. how. when. i think i have the who part down.
i feel like not much has happened in the last several months. i’ve got terrible stories, absurdities that i’ll tell you over drinks. and every one of them is lame in its own way. which means, as usual, i’m not quite living up to being alive.
there are all these days that i don’t get back. where i get older. the last week or so, i’ve been waking up determined to make the day better than the previous one. some days it has worked. it goes without saying that i have failed on some days.
it doesn’t really matter, that part. what matters is more that i am doing everything i can to appreciate every day, to be productive every day. and that’s where i’m not succeeding like desire.
i’m not producing quickly enough; i don’t have enough energy. i don’t have enough reasons to burn it to the ground. this is jacked, because i have the ideas. i need help, energy and more motivation.
one good thing: i have been reading an assload. my new years goal of 2 books every 5 weeks has turned into 3 books every 5 weeks and is now approaching 4 in 5 weeks. (an aside: i re-read ‘vox’ last week. it blew my mind a bit back in the day. last week, i spent the time wondering if it colored my sexual tastes at all. it did not blow my mind. in some ways, this is disappointing. in a lot of ways, it felt good. thankfully, i read it in an afternoon.)
there have been times where i thought i had a family at work. where i have felt like it. but then something happens and i am reminded, uncomfortably, that no, it’s just a job. a job i love with people i (usually) like, but it’s a job. and the other night, i wondered to myself: have i ever had a job, a job where i was paid real money, that i adored?
and really, honestly, the answer is no. not day and and out. there are periods where i love my work like no other. i think this is normal. but overall, i expect more. from myself. from my life. i’m demanding and probably unrealistic. but i want to adore every moment i am alive on this planet.
there have been 3 or 4 people in my life that i have loved working alongside, people i totally clicked with and looked forward to them being in my life. but the job? eh. i’ve moved from ‘making things’* to ‘getting things made’** — a different mindest, but the outcomes result in the same thing.
this is not to say that i don’t love what i do. i do. i love my job; i love what i help build. i read books constantly about how to be better. but the nature of the work itself doesn’t give me the satisfaction i want out of being alive. it doesn’t feel real to me right now.****
where is my permanence, my recognition, my mark on strangers? how do i make the world a better place — not just by those i know or even those i meet? or encounter? how do i improve the planet?
this is a struggle, i realize, that i have had the last ten years of my life. i don’t see it going away. it’s about how i define myself, how i frama my life, my free time, my motivations, my accomplishments.
to say that this is a really hard issue to solve is an understatement.
* things, in this case, applies to websites and applications, which, honestly, are not tangible nor real. many days, it’s like i make smoke. for a living.***
** this turns out to be the same as the previous footnote, except i don’t write as much actual code.
*** i believe i have just found the new way to describe my career to people i meet. i make smoke. nothing i create takes up space, nothing i make can exist without electricity and certain hardware and software, all configured and set up in a certain way. the things i create have such dependencies, it is all but assured they will not continue to exist even within my lifetime. i will outlive my work. and people wonder why i write, why i draw.
**** and yes, it isn’t real as i argue in the preceding footnotes. but it can be game-changing, life-changing, important. i didn’t go to school forever, i didn’t build things forever to believe that it’s noise and unimportant. i love the web, i love making things and i don’t want to stop.