I gather up papers strewn around my backseat. As on most weekends, I thought I’d work at home a bit, but I never made the time for it. Before I leave my car, I take a minute to asses the status of my career, in what is becoming my Monday ritual.
I’ve been at Favored-Flavors, a national premium ice cream manufacturer, for nearly six years. Part of me adores my job, especially the fun marketing events I get to plan and attend. Plus, I have tremendous freedom– now that I run the whole Special Events department. (Okay, it’s a department of two, but who’s counting?) I make enough in this position that I was able to buy my own adorable house last year, rather than wait, as my none-too-optimistic mother constantly nagged, until I “maybe, someday, reel in a man.”
But the other part of me wishes– well, let’s just say there are probably nicer people in Sing Sing than around here. In truth, I’ve started to dread having to deal with them. I’d love to find a job where I didn’t have to constantly watch out for sharpened knives aimed at my back. And wouldn’t it be great to do something meaningful? I mean, when you get down to basics, I spend my day shilling some of the world’s most copiously caloried concoctions. I’m well aware that our product is part of the reason so many kids have type 2 diabetes that it’s no longer called an adult-onset disease. But I have no idea what that better job might be.
Now I also let my mind roll into an area I’ve been avoiding: assessing the status of my life. With all this anger and road rage I’ve had lately, I don’t even recognize myself. I mean, haven’t I always taken pride in being nice? Well, at least there was the woman at the on-ramp. And last week, I did let a guy at Saks have the last pair of purple cashmere gloves for his girlfriend’s birthday gift, even though my credit card was already out of my wallet when he sauntered up to the counter. Those gloves were adorable, but I felt joyful handing them over. Plus, my girlfriends would describe me as caring and considerate– or they would have, until recently. I’m not really sure what my pals would say today. With all these short-tempered bursts of indignations…
Resigned to the fact that I’m not going to figure everything out today, I button my coat to steel myself against the winter morning and step outside. The chill bites my nose, so I keep my chin tucked into my bright green wool coat. As I trek to the front of the building, lulling myself into a mental trance with the steady click of my boot heels, I wonder if there’s anything to what that Robbins woman said. Maybe if I emphasize the good things more…
Excerpted from Downward Dog, Upward Fog by Meryl Davids Landau. Published by Alignment Publishing Company.
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