Ever feel a bit like the mailbox in this picture? Dented, rusty and caught up in a tangle of spokes and weeds? As I approach the end of 2016 I was reviewing some of my photos this morning and came across this one from 2014. It struck me because it bears a strong resemblance to how I feel some days, particularly in my professional life. I don’t know if there is anything worse, when it comes to job/career, then doing something you don’t enjoy and feeling completely stuck.
Admittedly, I am happy with the progress I am making towards my photography. This year has been a year of learning and gaining confidence and taking small steps to prepare for what I hope to be a fulfilling career. Like a child, however, I find myself very impatient. I wish I had discovered my passion for photography when I was much younger but I am not one of those people. It has been a long and adventurous road that finally brought me here and now I don’t want to wait any longer. So these past couple of years have also been a huge lesson in patience and tolerance. While talking with a friend about how frustrating my daytime job is, I flippantly made the comment that maybe I’m not suppose to be happy in my work because it forces me to work harder on my photography. While at the time I thought I was just being ironic, I realize it actually makes sense.
I have enjoyed photography for several years now but for a few of those years I was blessed with full-time jobs that I really did enjoy. A year after moving back home to Iowa that streak would end and I would find myself driving to and from work in tears more days than not. Yet another year later and I’m finding myself in a similar state. Every day becomes more and more painful and uncomfortable but I am learning to appreciate the long, endless days because they are driving me to work harder on what I do want. No longer feeling comfortable and fulfilled has given me focus. I am tired of feeling like I have no control over my own life and I don’t want to be stuck anymore. I know what I want and it’s up to me to reach out and take it. So while I am still cautious and beyond nervous, I look forward to the coming year. I have big dreams and a big God and wonderful family and friends who love and support me. Oh…and a daily dose of motivation…off to work I go.