I have a job that I love. I get to work with people I trust, people I learn from. People who challenge me every day to be a better human. For the last four or five days we have joined together in the undertaking of a task that seemed, well, almost impossible. A task rife with opportunity for failure.
Things broke. It rained. Equipment was lost. Systems that we were sure would work, failed.
But we all pulled together and did what we could do. We were patient with each other. We gave each other the benefit of the doubt, and while I was working those long-ass shifts, I was energized, because I knew that the people around me were, are, worth it.
The reality, and this is the thing that I think about constantly, is that even though I have a job I LOVE, a job I feel that I am lucky to have, a job that has more closely matched my values and lifestyle choices than any other, I would still rather be doing something else entirely.
I wake at 5 on the days that I get to go into work at a reasonable hour and I write for an hour or two. Then, I go to work. I put in a good solid day. Then, I leave, and I come home, and I write, and I work on my website. I think of ten or twenty different quotes for my images. I think about different projects I can do, and ways I can inspire people to accept themselves more fully.
But I know that for eight hours a day, though I am lucky, I want to be even luckier. I want to be blessed. So that is why I push myself. And I know for sure deep down that I would rather be doing something else. Something else entirely.
BUT. I also know that if I wasn't doing this other thing around the sides and angles of my job, I would not do my job as well. I would be lackadaisical at work. I would not focus. I would arrive late. I would leave early. I would resent the hours that I had to spend NOT doing what I really want to do. I know that for certain, for sure, if I wasn't working my ass off doing what I really want to do in the periphery, I would resent the rest of my life for keeping me from it. All the while, it would be me doing the keeping from.
So I am saying, in my very long-winded way, that if you have a dream, and you cannot live it all day long, every day, do it a little each day. Then add a little more. And keep finding ways to add more of what you love into your day. Because even if you can only do what you really want to do in the edges and seams of your life, those edges and seams will infuse your whole life with meaning. The bits and pieces you pour your heart into will spill over and make everything else much much better.
Like everything else, it is a simple matter of choice. Your life is an interconnected, highly fluid, ever changing story, and everything in it informs everything else. So let your conscious choices, as opposed to your unconscious ones, be the informers. Let the effort you make to stretch, to grow, to reach for what you want, seep into the parts that are less than ideal. Let your desire to express yourself, your desire to fill your life with meaning, flow into every little bit of your life until it is all magic.
In the end, it is really not what you would rather be doing. Unless you do nothing at all about it.