I think the worst is over…

    OK, I got the “I think you’re nuts” opinion from
Rick tonight, that should do it for the people not exactly thrilled
with my decision. With the exception of Mom and Rick, everyone has been
really supportive, thanks guys! I know mom’s just worried, and Rick is
about as practical as they come, so I’m not going to sweat the not
understanding. Rick’s main questions revolved around what I was going
to do with the degree, the thought of “I’m not quite sure” just doesn’t
sit well with him. I do know that as time has gone by I have become
more interested and involved in spiritual issues, and I know that I
have an actual aptitude for studying this stuff. I’m willing to live
with some uncertainty in exchange for pursuing something that I care
about. I’ve lived the mostly carefree life of the bachelor, buying
whatever I want while saving up for retirement. I found it particularly
unsatisfying, perhaps I wouldn’t have minded it if I wasn’t single, but
who knows. I’m ready to get a little deeper into life and in usual
Isaac style, I feel like studying is the way to start, action will come
after I understand…


4 replies on “I think the worst is over…”

So Rick and I are the ignorant sluts in an otherwise understanding and accepting world. I can handle that. I’m jealous that someone can just abdicate plans to persue the middle class dream of home and family. With your tastes in technology, have a hard time believing that you will be happy as a quasi Bhuddist monk. You would be turning into a benign appearing, articulate Colin Leath. The difference is that Colin seems to disdain material goods, whereas you are always lusting after the newesst gadgets in your field. My worry is that you wil not be able to reconcile the two lifestyles. I’m ever so happy for you to follow your dreams. Just from observing your life, so far, don’t think relative poverty is for you. We love you anyway, as Dean says.

I certainly wouldn’t have called you two what you have, but I think I know where the humor is coming from… I think a better way of putting it is that you two are the ones expressing worry over my financial well being, while everyone else seems to be concentrating on my expenditure of time and my mental health. Here’s my best explanation of my financial plans… My retirement savings seems to be going well, and I can live off of what I am making now. Granted, I wouldn’t be doing as well if Rick hadn’t let me live here, but I’d be OK. Here’s the thing, if I was doing something that I actually enjoyed, I wouldn’t mind the pay scale nearly as much. Plus, as any good economist will tell you, there is no incentive like poverty to get you working towards something else. If I don’t live with Rick, I am much more likely to make more money, cause I’ll have to:-) Seriously, I’m a decent salesman, I’ll always be able to make money if I need to, but I want to give some things a shot while I’m not burdened with the typical problems of a guy my age…


“abdicating plans to pursue the middle class dream”?

Isaac / Dr. Crawford –

(1) I recommend we abdicate any dream that doesn’t belong to us: the problem being not with the dream itself but whether it was, is, or ever will be ours.

(2) At least part of your Mom’s & Rick’s opinions, I’d guess, are attempts to make sure you see the balance / flip side / alternatives & consequences. So kudos to them – it’s much nicer & healthier of them to say so, than pretend or be hostile about it.

(3) The most impractical things I have done have been the greatest victories of my life thus far. The best things I have done have all come from decisions I was scared to follow through on (but did), and choices which few if any of my friends & family understood. (Though people mostly tried to be supportive.)

They simply didn’t understand why I didn’t do things the same way they did, or why I didn’t make the same decisions they made.

So the feedback you get from other people says an awful lot about their comfort zones – how think think and feel and live. And very little about what you’re doing.

That applies to me, as well.

(4) The most impractical things I did taught me more about what I want and who I am, than adhering to the conventional path ever has. (Ironically?) Even regarding which parts of the conventional path do play a role in my goals.

(5) If *everyone* agrees and approves of what you are doing, beware:
(a) you are probably doing something very safe, very sound, & thoroughly rationalized and justified, [i.e. it’s rooted more in your fears than in your love & desires]
(b) this thing will usually be either completely disconnected from – or, at best, will be a pale imitation of – whatever it is you most truly want to do [i.e. a compromise or a retreat].


I forgot to mention — Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

Isaac –

Your mom really has a point about the “material goods… the newest gadgets” bit.

You don’t crave simple comfort; you crave niiiiice things (the things you truly dig – like photo & stereo equipment). But you already know this about yourself. And I don’t see you as being in denial about it. (Isn’t it nice to be realistic about ourselves? A shame more people don’t try it.)

You’ve already wrestled with it before, of course – it’s part of what led/tied you to this job you want to escape now. I look at it as comfort / fear / materialism winning that round. [since the trade off’s result was a skew toward comfort instead of happiness… tricky balance, yes?]

So it remains to be seen if the results are different this time. Who knows what the right balance will be, for you?


P.S. – the more I read your mom’s reply, the more I disagree that her concern is over your financial well being and the more I agree that her concern is your ability to *reconcile* the two (happiness & financial well being). [of course I don’t know what other conversation has occurred outside the blog]

Possibly based on the sheer # of people who fail to do so, the odds appear to be against us. However, throw out those statistics. I don’t believe they’re valid, b/c the truth is, most of us simply give up and trade our happiness for relative comfort and “safety”.

I’d rather see the statistical success rate on people who do try, and try, and persist in trying, to achieve both their true happiness and financial comfort (whatever that means for the individual person).

The odds are completely against us if we give up.
The odds are pretty good if we don’t. I think. Figure I have to go find out for myself. Stay tuned.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.