I’m awake at 3:45 AM when I should have been asleep hours ago. Instead, I’m sitting in front of my computer, typing up my first blog entry in weeks. I’ve got a million things to say, yet no way to convey them. My mind’s racing. My fingers are frozen. I’ve restarted this entry four or five times by now and it still doesn’t feel right. It’s forced.
I was laying in bed after putting away a copy of Alternative Press and turning out the light. Usually, I’ve read until my eyes are half-closed. Tonight, I shelved the magazine out of sheer boredom. I was just flipping pages and skimming. No effort. No comprehension. Just recognition of letters and moving on. Laying in the dark, the weight of the world came crashing down on me, one tedious thought at a time.
I’ve got too much going on at once now and it’s wearing on me. Admittedly, I’m not a multitasker. My step dad has a phrase he uses ad nauseum: “I do one thing and I do it well.” But there’s a lot of truth to that with me. I divide and conquer. I pound away at one thing at a time until it’s done and then move on. The only problem is that what’s on my plate isn’t very conducive to that gameplan. That’s why I loved my three months on the road alone and why I’m quickly loathing the three months I’ve been home. There were few options and once I was pointed down a path, I could focus on accomplishing something, and moving on to the next thing with no loose ends from what I just left behind.
First and foremost, I need a job. The only problem is that I have absolutely no idea where I want to go. I’ll sit down in front of usa.jobs or Google and start typing locations. One day, I’ll bounce around Massachusetts jobs. The next day, I’ll ask myself what I’m doing… family and college football are my interests and priorities. Yet neither of those are in the Northeast. So I look somewhere closer like Nashville, TN or pieces of North Carolina and Virginia. Another day, I’ll go back to being attracted to Greenville, SC. Then realize how few non-blue-collar jobs there are in that area. Even today, a company in Charleston I had previously interviewed with (and been offered a job at) crossed my mind. They have openings. A good bit I qualify for. Then I wonder if it’s bad practice to apply at a place I’ve previously turned down. And why I don’t like Charleston. Finally, it dawns on me that my whole intention was to leave South Carolina and try something new. And then the cycle of bouncing all around the United States starts all over again.
Easy enough solution, right? I don’t know where I want to live so I’ll just focus on doing what I want to do. Um, well… That’s problem #2. I know I like databases and SQL. But that’s about all I know. IT career listings are almost always full of help-desk and trouble-shooting jobs. If I wanted that, I’m sure Best Buy’s Geek Squad is hiring. A lot of SQL-heavy jobs also require .NET experience with a programming language. Which I don’t have. I’d love to learn it though! So much so that I’ve looked online and at local tech schools to see if there were any classes centered around Visual Studio. Surprise! Dead end. No luck there. So I start looking for different jobs, like a business analyst. And after staring at hundreds of duties and tasks in job applications that just read as documentation busy work, it loses its appeal. And then I’m back on another neverending cycle with the duties, just as the location.
Second, I’ve been working on my outline/timeline of my trip for a memoir. But after being frustrated at the job thing, it carries over into the outlining. Also, I don’t know how to write. I get going and want to document every tiny detail. It becomes a daily account rather than a story. I started a prologue covering my last few weeks at work. It started out really well, I thought. But it quickly turns into me simply walking through each and every detail and conversation I had with someone, regardless of whether it fits a story or plot. I include it because it’s simply the next action in line that I remember. Now there’s book frustration piling on top of the job-hunt frustration.
Lastly, I’ve been trying to read through a database fundamentals book to learn some new things for a project that’s been brewing in my head for awhile. But the wordiness and bland style of a textbook only add to the compounding frustrations. And I don’t have enough of a knowledge base to simply put down the book and grind away at my idea.
On all three – the job search, book writing, and database project – there’s a whole lot of time and effort put into each with little to no progress to be seen or appreciate. It all just feels like running in place.
It’s starting to get suffocating.
Throwing darts at a map for a weekend flight to somewhere across the country to run away from it all for a few days and punch my reset button is looking more and more appealing.
Any votes? I hear San Diego’s nice…