Monday, April 17, 2006

Live to Work, or Work to Live

I have a very nice life, I think. I am a lucky, lucky person. An apartment in the city, a house in the country, a healthy savings account, a husband I love, and the prospect of a family together.

What don't I have?

A job that I feel passionate about.

This is not to say I have a bad job. On the contrary, when I describe the circumstances of my job to most people they seem to think it sounds pretty good. It's relatively creative, the hours are relaxed, I have unlimited sick days, a good paycheck (by graphic design standards) and the respect of many of the people I work with.

However, I don't feel a burning passion for what I do, I see it more as a means to an end. And I guess that makes me a bit of a wage slave - which, at times, seems very disheartening and lame.

At times I feel this nagging sensation that I should be doing something more fabulous, more notorious, just MORE.

But then I leave the office at 5 o'clock on a sunny afternoon, knowing that noone expects me to stay later - as they would in a more demanding position. Or we go away to our house for a relaxing weekend, knowing that I'm not leaving anyone in the lurch by not working the weekend.

Or I think about how convenient the job will be, if or when I have little kidlets. And I quench that nagging feeling. Because I think I am working in order to enjoy my life, rather than living for my work.

Am I copping out, or am I making a concious choice?

Yesterday afternoon, lazing about the house, reading and cooking (whole roast chicken a'la Nigella Lawson - my idol) I felt such a sense of happiness and contentment, that I thought Nothing can be better than this feeling. It was a beautiful sunny day out, Euge was working building a piece of furniture for us and NPR was on the radio. It was just sublime. Nothing out of the ordinary, but wonderfully domestic and secure.

But here I am on Monday. Wage slaving. And now I think. Ugh. Here I am again. Worse, I have to do a powerpoint presentation - the lowest of the low in design work. Shouldn't I be art directing Harpers Bazaar, or the latest Calvin Klein ad campaign?

But if I was doing that, I couldn't be writing this, could I?

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