Passions And Paychecks

Wildflowers Unscripted Writing Challenge Day 5: A day in the life of me

I’m supposed to give you a play by play of my day. But, frankly, I wouldn’t even want to read that. You don’t care what I eat for breakfast or when I call my mom or any of that mundane shit. So allow me to diverge from the topic a bit.

During the summer of 2012, I had what I will affectionately refer to as an identity crisis. I had just started my blog and, consequently, started following more people in the so-called blogosphere via social media. Following these people meant that I was all too aware of the lives of many bloggers who managed to exist outside of the 9-5 norm. And, not only did they exist, but they thrived. Their lives seemed full, exciting and fun.

All I could wonder was what the hell was I doing sitting at a desk, wasting my youth away?

I’m not sure when this identity crisis dissipated; I just know that it eventually did. I gave myself enough “You’re only twenty-something and right now, at least you have a roof over your head” pep talks to get over the hump. I soon realized that I was no less or no more for working a corporate job by day and full blown feeding my passion of writing by night.

Before my summer of 2012 identity crisis, I sat at a bar with one of my coworkers. It was someone’s going away party or whatever other excuse you find at work to imbibe alcohol after hours. At the time, I hadn’t yet started Twenties Unscripted and was only writing here and there somewhere on Tumblr. I told my coworker how much I loved writing and how I would love to spend my life doing that. And then she said something that caught me off guard: “You might not love writing as much if that’s what you relied on to pay your bills. You might start to resent it.”

It’s a sentence that has stuck with me because, like most sentences that stick with me, it’s probably true. As much as I’d hate to admit that. I’m probably head over heels in love with writing because it’s not what keeps a roof over my head. It’s not what keeps food in my fridge or my lights turned on. Writing is like my mistress; the place I go to get away from all the other bullshit and just enjoy myself.

Yes, that was a terrible comparison. But, you got it.

So, what does any of this have to do with a day in my life? Well, that is my day. That is my life. My day is spent giving a large fraction of my energy to my day job and my night gig of blogging. My day is spent jotting sentences down in my phone. Pulling inspiration from Twitter. Wondering what is next for every aspect of my life. My day is spent thinking too much and thinking too hard and wishing that I could just quit thinking for a moment. My day is spent laughing and extracting happiness from routine. My day is spent chasing a paycheck and chasing my passion.

People always tell you to do something you’re passionate about as if it is just that simple. Telling someone to do something they are passionate about is the most over-privileged statement in the history of the United States. At least now. In your twenties. When what you really need to do is put your big girl pants on and figure out how to stand on your own two feet. You can feed your passion and still get a paycheck. Why do you think blogs even exist? For schmucks like me who need somewhere to goafter work so they can shout to the Internet stratosphere until someone hears them. That is what I do every single day. That is what I focus on. That is what I care about. I care about keeping Sallie Mae off my back and keeping Twenties Unscripted alive and well. And I care about my kinfolk, of course. I try to sustain healthy relationships with the five people on this planet who can put up with my bullshit.

Feed your passion. Get that check. And, if the rubber finally meets the road and you find a way to do those both simultaneously, well, that’s fucking amazing and some celestial being has looked out for you. But, do not sit idle waiting for that to happen. The rubber does not meet the road without you being on a relentless grind. Move. Work. Bust your ass. Then bust your ass some more.



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