The cold snap is keeping me in the house. By doctors orders, not supposed to be out in weather under 40 degrees or over 80 for a while. That’s ok really. I am using the time to adjust to my new position as a kept man; more just a stay at home, retired old fat dude really but I like the idea of having (at least saying I have) a sugar momma for a bit.
But, I am struggling to sleep. So used to a frenetic pace, being needed to solve things, I keep waking with the fear I have not done something or am late to be somewhere. My mind still races as I fix breakfast. I feel that I should plan my day while in the shower; list out all of the things to get done as I put on clothes – shoot a text to someone or myself so I do not forget to have conversations at work. This is the first time I have been off between Christmas and New Years Eve in almost 28 yrs.
It was just today, a good friend asked how I was doing after the heart attack. At some point, we talked about a problem that happened at work. Something I would have been a part of at some point – the types of thing he an I have solved for years. They resolved it without me (damn it), but part of me missed being there. I felt the rush of being included, searching for an answer even though it was past, the pressure rising…the pressure to perform. To work, work, WORK!
Now it is late at night and I sit here, 60 yrs old…way on the other side of a hill I cannot cross back over…with no schedule to keep – well, a few doctor appointments.
But tonight I am giving myself some direction in true corporate America fashion (still trying to let go)…an ‘unemployed dude with no meetings to attend’ mission statement.
- I do not want another “job”. I had one that consumed me. I sure do not need me over my shoulder yelling “dance monkey, monkey dance”, or saying what I have to myself for years…”you have accepted the kings coin, you must do the king’s bidding!”. Even as the fry guy, I would spend my time making it better and trying to be in charge.
- I cannot let a hobby, a passion I left unresolved become that for sure. If it pays, it will. If not, it will give me peace and that is plenty. Fishing, writing, whatever.
- I will need to be hungry or extremely passionate about something to break the first statement.
- I will feed the hunger for an interaction with my mind and where it finds itself…not really planning where it will need to be at a point in time – but just discovering myself there.
- I will write to find me before I entered the corporate world. Craft sentences, build paragraphs…use more ellipsis than I probably should…because I need to tap into the side of me that finds happiness in words.
I wish I had not been such a (well, let’s say it) dick in high school and had listened as an English teacher, Candace Metcalf, told me I should write more. She encouraged me to try. She spoke of the potential in what I was doing, but I would have none of it. Even though I knew in my soul that I loved the journey, I resisted her help and knowledge.
Watching the Waltons, I was so envious of the words that Richard Thomas would speak in John Boy’s voice (Earl Hamner Jr. was the writer). How he captured the emotions of the time, the environment, the people; it made me feel that it would be impossible to achieve that level of imagery.
The words of Twain, Steinbeck, Hemingway, Dumas, Lovecraft and so many others formed my view of the world, shaped how I think; they showed me what I really wanted to do. But just like the teacher…I didn’t listen, I didn’t have faith. There was no way.
I was going to get a job, make money, and live. I wasn’t going to move off that path and put myself out there. I wasn’t going to pursue writing.
Now I have the luxury provided by my Joy to be able to do that if I choose…so, though I am still technically on medical and/or vacation till February….let’s see what now.
Well, as soon as this cold snap moves on we will see.
I have learned that being a kept man involves finishing all of the stuff that I said I would do that is undone too – wasn’t happy about that; thought it was about looking good, but still a kept man.