Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Midlife Crisis...?

I think I may be having one, but I'm not entirely sure.

There's been a lot going on this year that I really haven't had time to stop and think about much until August, when my folks went on their summer vacation, just before my birthday. Since then, a lot of what's been going on has finally had time to sink in, and I think I may be a little depressed as a result.

So much has changed since this time last year, and in a lot of big ways. My brother has just about finished school. He's in the final stages of getting a doctorate, and even has a big, fancy job to go along with it. This time ten years ago, I would never have guessed anything of the sort would happen. Five years ago, it seemed like he'd never get done, but now he has, and he seems to be off to a fine start.

Another big change is my dad. Everybody's been handling his retirement well over the last five years, especially him. Naturally he'd been slowing down some, in part because that's what happens when a person gets into their late fifties and early sixties. Alongside that was a bad hip that he had replaced back in March. Even though he's in pretty good shape for a guy his age, I gotta say, I'm actually kind of surprised that he's pretty much back to his old self already, barely seven months later. I'm glad he's feeling good enough to do all the things he likes to do again, and I would like to see him continue at them for a good long while yet. I suppose that's where a lot of my concern comes in, because he's always been, far as I can tell, the sort of guy who tends to get maybe a little too enthusiastic about things, almost to the point where it seems amazing that he hasn't put himself in a wheelchair, at the very least, by this point. I don't want to see him wind up getting stopped now because his enthusiasm for the things he does got the better of him.

All this thinking that's been going on has made me wonder if I haven't wound up wasting my life. Here I am, a college-educated 36-year-old man who's spent the last dozen years or so working in a burger joint. There's nothing wrong with that, in particular. It's just that I'm nowhere close to where I thought I'd be at this point in my life. Knowing that I'm at least partly responsible for that, simply because I'm tactless enough to write and post blog entries like this. In many cases, I do the things I do because I can think of no better way to get the things done that I need to get done, even if it isn't exactly the right way of doing them.

With all the amazing things that have been going on around me these last few months, I find myself wondering if I haven't wound up wasting my life. I mean, sure, I've got my own place, a job that's good enough for me to survive on, and enough time to do things that keep me relatively entertained. From what I've observed, I guess some of those things even keep other people entertained as well, which I suppose is a good thing.

But lately, that's felt like it's not enough, like I somehow need more. It makes me wonder just how much more I can do, at which point, I start wondering how much more I want to do.

This plays into what it says about me in that Dungeons and Dragons thing I posted last week. The alignment section said I'd be a True Neutral character in the game, which fits. I certainly don't want to come across as indifferent, if avoidable, but at the same time, the idea of pushing for extremes rarely seems smart or correct, even when I may seem to be doing it myself.

At any rate, this is one of those moments when I'm feeling wasted, like I've led a less-than-worthwhile life thus far.

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