I woke up this morning feeling sadness. I’ve been riding on such a high the past week or so I guess it was bound to end eventually. I mean, emotions are situational and fleeting and the reality is that there’s not a whole lot of permanence in this life.
Relationships are temporary. Events that we enjoy come and go. Hurt fades like the jagged edges of a stone worn away by years of water passing over it. Sometimes the change of the tides is welcome and sometimes it leaves us questioning the purpose or meaning of it all.
This morning I’m just filled with melancholy and an infinite sadness (que the Smashing Pumpkins).
A week ago I was applying for a job at UNMC and dreading it. I’d come to the conclusion that I didn’t want to do the same thing I’ve always done. But then what?
I then had a major epiphany that I should pursue my writing. It check all the boxes but one. I enjoy it, I’m passionate about it, it’s fulfilling, and I’m certain would lead me to getting more satisfaction out of life. The box it doesn’t check? Poetry won’t pay the bills.
I rode the emotional high I was on as I jumped through all the hoops required to get the application completed. Most of it was easy and actually quite enjoyable. I revisited my past to collect all my transcripts and it’s nice to look at ones accomplishments. I meet up and had conversations with friends and former colleagues to share my news and ask for their help. Again, wonderful to see and talk with these people I care about. I then had to compile a collection of my favorite poems and compose some words describing my journey thus far and why this program is right for me. It was delightful. I had everything submitted before the deadline of October 1st. Great success!
Then October 2nd happened. I woke up and checked my email in-box, which is my normal practice. I was greeted with an email that my checking account was overdrawn. My house payment would not clear without more funds being deposited. It’s an easy enough thing to remedy by transferring funds from savings, but also a good reminder that I’m operating in a state that has definite limitations. There’s a finite amount in my savings and not more where that came from without work.
In addition, I just happened to look up how much the writing MFA costs and found that it’s going to be 30K+. Yowza!! That’s just not an easy figure to reconcile with my current state of being. If money wasn’t a factor, I’d not be taking a serious pause about this decision. But as it is, I am. Not only does poetry not pay bills, it also doesn’t pay back student loans or take me on vacations.
The hopeless romantic in me argues that it’s only money and does not matter because we should pursue our passions no matter the cost.
The realist in me recognizes that we probably can’t have our cake and eat it too. I have to figure out what to do to earn money. If by some chance I can find something that will cover my monthly expenses while being flexible enough to allow me to continue pursuit of the MFA, not to mention parenting, household maintenance, relationships, and freetime activities that would be.. well.. a miracle.
It’s a financial puzzle as well as one one of life balance. I’ve over extended myself before and though I’ve always made it work, it’s not easy and at times taken a toll on me. Am I in for that again or should I take an easier path? The way is unclear.
I woke up this morning with trepidation about my predicament and worry that I’m going to choose wrong. I’m not fearless and I don’t have a ton of support. Whatever I do, I have to do it on my own and it’s scary.
My children depend on me and I’m leaning toward what my head is telling me and away from what my heart wants. Should I just wait five more years until they are gone to follow these dreams? I might not have a choice,
Sinking in the Cupid De Locke,