Last night, I had a long talk with my wife. I am a very driven person, and I have high expectations of myself. I am never satisfied right where I am. I have to be progressing. That causes me much angst in my life when I am evaluating where I am at this moment. Because I am never where I want to be at that moment. I always have aspirations. I never ever live in the moment of triumph and enjoy it. That's done, what's next? I was thinking about this,and how that can be such a roadblock to so many areas of my life. I know that we have many different characters we play in life. And it seems like my unhappiness lies in almost every character's life right now.
As a husband, I want to provide my wife with the finer things in life that she didn't get to enjoy growing up. I want her to be able to walk out the door and say I'm going to browse the mall a bit and maybe do some shopping, without my accountant character having bells and whistles go off, and run to the bank account to see how big of a hit we could take. As a father, I want my kids to never incur debt to get an education. I would love to write a check for tuition each semester and get them going in life without the saddle of student loan debt. As an attorney, I would love to never have to stop and think about how to handle this issue or that issue with a case. You get the idea. And my reality is that I am not anywhere I want to be, and I am not appreciating that I made it to many of my where I was trying to get to's a while back. I want to be where I want to be, and I want to be there RIGHT NOW!
Kathy has had the unfortunate task of having to talk me off the ledge a few times here lately. I was back to beating myself up for the fact that I haven't taken my family anywhere cool for a year and some months now. I feel as though I have failed my family miserably because I don't make a ton of money and take them cool places and to experience cool things. And in reality, wanting to do those things serves another purpose. I have a lot of pressure on me a lot of the time. I make so many decisions and work out so many situations on a daily basis. I take each one very seriously. I don't make offers to defendants off the cuff, I think each one through. I don't take my position as the family accountant lightly. I try to make the best decisions possible every day. I am especially sensitive to trying to spend quality time with the kids because as a kid, no one gave a rip about me, and I don't want them to know what that feels like. To sum up, I put a lot of pressure on me. And referring back to that problem I mentioned earlier, I don't make a ton of money, so I don't really get to have many blowing off steam opportunities. You see, the one thing I do know about me is that as long as I am at home, I am not ever going to relax. There are things that need to be getting done around the house or house business. There are kids who require attention and have needs. There is always just SOMETHING. When I leave the house, at least SOME of it is left there. But I am caught in this weird situation where I can't even really afford to go fishing for a day or go camping for weekend without some planning a month ahead. So I guess what my real gripe is is that I can't take a spontaneous trip. And frankly, I need some spontaneity!
But here is the thing, if I take all that griping above out, I would see that wow, I am blessed. God has done some wonderful things in my life, and I need to appreciate them. I spent most of my youth going from no relationships to bad relationships to substance abuse to wasting my potential in a factory (nothing against factory work, I just was never happy and it turns out, because I could do more than that). And now, I have two college degrees, a law degree, a wife that I don't really deserve, three kids that ultimately love me, thought sometimes I can't tell! haha. And here is the answer to the I don't make enough money gripe. I DO MAKE ENOUGH MONEY. My family has seen it's share of shut off notices and collections letters and phone calls, and eaten ramen 4 nights a week, etc. etc. And none of that is true now. All bills are paid, all meals have meat, and all kids are enrolled in some type of extra curricular activities. I have a mini van (not sure if I am bragging or hanging my head on this one) that runs well and gets the kids where they have to be, and a paid for truck that I love to drive. I actually have a few bills on auto draft, and that never happened. I had to have the flexibility to not pay it one month if need be! I can now go to my bank and get a loan if it came to me needing that. I have come a long way. I really need to recognize that.
How does that relate to my lifestyle change? I think my angst about my position in life plays a role in my poor diet habits. I am not satisfied or settled in where I am and that underlying unhappiness is being filled with food. Fix one, fix the other, right? The question being, how do I fix it? I am who I am, and I don't know how to change that!