I’ll be honest – I’m a jealous person.
I’m also impatient, unfocused, and ummm… I dunno. There’s another word that’s just out of reach but I’ll think of it. Later.*
Bill Murray was recently given the Mark Twain Prize from the Kennedy Center. There was a whole show with a variety of entertainers. Someone I knew in high school was up there on stage with one of them. Even in high school he was a talented musician and singer. That he had the courage to follow his dream through the rough times for more than 20 years is inspiring.
It also makes me jealous.
In college I met a guy who, even though he was studying in the computer engineering side of the house, he’d always had the dream of owning and running a coffee shop. He opened his cafe a little less than 10 years ago and it’s a lovely place. The menu is fabulous, the atmosphere is relaxed and everyone working there knows coffee. I’m happy he’s successful.
I’m also seething jealous.
After college, for some bizarre and otherworldly reason, I went to a massage therapy school. It might have had something to do with the fact that I was young, couldn’t get a job for lack of experience and connections and was therefore easily fleeced into thinking I could be trained to do this and get a job in a PT clinic somewheres (looking back, HVAC would’ve been a better course to take). More than 1000 hours of insane study schedules, muscle memorizations, technique work, and learning almost a whole new language so I could act professional and write medical level SOAP’s, I had my certification and license, but couldn’t land a job.
A friend I met in the program not only started her own business as a massage therapist that year, she managed to end up in the top 25% of massage therapy incomes nationally by the end of her second year. She’s had a crazy-successful career, being dubbed “Ironfingers” by the US Olympic Pentathlon Team, working with professional athletes and businessmen that have each incrementally helped move her a touch higher. She’s now at a point where she’s studying equine massage, looking to transition into a elite athlete/equine PT-focused career that’s easier on her body (massage therapy can really tear you up – most people don’t realize it, but full-time massage therapists have a shelf-life). She’s a wonderful person who not just works hard but always has a smile on her face.
And the jealousy I feel borders on rage.
It isn’t that I grudge them their successes – they worked for every inch they ever got.
But it does feel as though I’m somehow stuck. Like I had the same chances they did, but I somehow can’t seem to make it work. Was I supposed to go left instead of right? Did I pick the wrong property in Monopoly? Would things have gone better if I’d moved the rook instead of the knight? What step did I miss? What class did I sleep through that they paid attention in? Is their horoscope better than mine? How did their success happen while I’m still spinning my wheels in the mud?
I don’t have the answers. I just know that I’m sitting here, trying not to be jealous, trying to figure out why I can’t seem to touch the dream. Am I holding myself back? Is the Universe saying “Waaaiiiittttt for iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit…”
*Undisciplined. That’s the word I was looking for.