Empathetic Civilization Dreamin’

Good Thursday Morning, Bianca!

How are you today? Has your quarter life crisis passed yet? I feel like I have a quarter life crisis about once every two weeks these days. 

While your email got me thinking and threw me into my second quarter life crisis of the week, it also reassured me! It’s nice to know that at least one other person is in the same place. And guess what, B? I assume there are a lot of other twenty-somethings trapped in the same lost place.

It’s really hard to reach a goal, when you don’t have one. I feel like my whole life was geared toward college (my over supportive parent story is very similar to yours, but I’m an only child, so I assume mine is worse. I mean, I’ve literally said, “I’m good at pretty much everything I try” and believed it.). But, I have been graduated from college for two years now. I’m wrapping up my second year of “shaping young minds” on the west side of our fair city. I’m starting graduate school in the fall. By all other accounts I have my life together. I have a career.

You’d think I know what I want to “do” with my life, but Bianca, I have no idea what I want to do, I don’t know what I want to BE.
I get comments all the time from people, “It must be so nice to have a career.” “I can’t believe you finished school so early and are already settled in a career.” WHAT? Teaching is my career? And settled? Does that mean I’m settling? I can’t do this forever. I don’t want to do this forever. There’s no way. I LOVE IT. I love my job, don’t get me wrong, but to me, it’s just that.  It’s a job. And this job is mentally and physically exhausting. I don’t get to talk to adults all day unless it’s our very limited email. I hear stories from students about poverty and abuse and have the pleasure of meeting crackhead parents. I’m sorry, but, I can’t do this forever.
And when my head stops spinning madly as I try and explain this to people, I get the question of doom. “Okay, then what do you want to do?” The ugly step sister of, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

I’d like the quote a line from my favorite musical, A Chorus Line and say, “Young.”

But really, the best answer I can come up with is: I’d like to be a stay at home mom without kids. Did I just admit that?
Education is truly where my passion lies and in a perfect world, where I could change underprivileged kids’ future and shape their over worked and/or drugged out parents into perfect beings who care about education as much as I do, this is where I’d stay. But unfortunately I know that is far from reality. Reality is, soon, I’m going to be burnt out.

So… where do I go from there? (Note: this is not a rhetorical question; I’d really like you to tell me where to go.)

{Sigh.} After my ramblings, I hope I have given you at least the comfort to know that, hey, I’m right there with ya!
Like I have said a million times, Bianca, it’s going to be okay. No matter what happens, we’re going to be okay! We have both had what we thought were “life ending” problems and we have always managed to survive (barely) unscathed.

We’ll get there, B… wherever there is. (I’d like to think “there” is a tropical island with endless beaches and no responsibilities.)
In any event (I’m trying to end this email with a positive spin), wouldn’t it be nice if the video below had it right? How cool would it be to live in an “Empathetic Civilization?” But would it mean “Republican Free?” I can see this theory sending all our favorite conservatives right into a tail spin. Hee hee!

Empathetic and lost,

Bridget

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