Our place in life
I recently read and commented on a posting about be ‘sure’ that what you have chosen for your life’s profession is right for you. As we grow up our view of what we want to do does change and though we may be years into a particular career some will have that feeling that they were meant to do something else with their lives. With over 70 years walking down life’s road I can look back and with a modicum of experience and say don’t worry you can always go in new directions.
Soon after I left the military and having only vague thoughts at what career path I wanted to take I received a nudge in what direction to take. For about three months after my discharge I just kicked back and enjoyed life without some officer or non-com barking orders at me until one day my father appeared and handed me a piece of paper. On it was the address of a company and a name and when I asked my dad what is this he said… time for you to go to work.
On the paper was the name of a friend of his who managed a printing company, and as they say the rest is history. I ended up spending the next 26 years working my way up the ladder in the printing profession and never looked back. Weather by act of God or luck after a while working as a printing pressman seemed to be the perfect fit for me, and most days I actually enjoyed going to work, so much so that I often joked with new men in my crew that I was being paid for having fun. All of which came to an abrupt end with the death’s of my wife, mother and father all within 10 months of each other.
Sometimes it takes major life altering encounters to have one question their role in life and other times it is just an accumulation of day to day feelings that something is missing in their life. For myself it was as if the very reason I was living was taken from me. It took the constant prodding and pulling of my son and daughter to get my shit together and get on with life that finally got me back in the real world. However now alone and basically free of responsibilities I took a new path in life when offered a job by my son, and at 48 I embarked on a new career path that led me to find my new home in Alaska.
Now for the untold millions of people who daily struggle with the yet unanswered question of what should they do with the rest of their lives, I can say based on a long life of strikingly different vocations follow your dreams. One does not have to settle for that ‘bird in the hand’ job you presently have. Yes changing directions will take some work and no doubt a lowering of your initial income, but for most at this moment in time it is not the income that matters most but personal satisfaction and happiness.
And maybe we should take to heart the following words
I wrote in that comment to the blog posting….
Doing what you love to do does not mean you will always be doing it.
Now on the autumn side of one’s life
I can look back at a lifetime of ‘this is what I was meant to do’ professions,
from soldier and printing pressman to DVD producer and big game guide
each one seemed to be exactly what I wanted to do.
Now late in life I see that each of these professions
were indeed right
for that particular moment in my life.
So maybe we should not worry to much about being ‘sure’
just that it is what makes us feel fulfilled
at that moment.