Writing Prompt – Snow Day

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01-17-2018

Today began early in the morning, before any of us awoke the snow had started. We knew this would happen, and were as prepared as could be, seeing as how I would have to drive to work regardless. I have wondered on occasions such as this on what it would take to have work cancelled, like children who don’t have to visit school when the ground is coated in white. I longingly think back on the days of my childhood when we listened attentively to the radio, as my mom got ready for work, waiting for them to begin the list of school closures. As an adult, there is no such luck. I am thankful when they close the schools though, as I think about how much more dangerous the traffic would be both to and from work, with school in session. (I’m sure parents, students, and teachers are thankful as well.)

So, I get up at the same time I do every day to drive the perilous journey to work. Each time I do this, I worry about other drivers out there that could potentially cause new hazards. I’m not worried about getting myself to work; and by that I mean I’m not worried about getting in an accident from sliding off the road. However, I worry every time over dangerous drivers. I’ve seen too many videos of drivers sliding across the road into other cars. Life would be so much easier if media wasn’t constantly bombarding us with images of the “what ifs.” “What ifs” that do happen every day, to other people, though the point of this over-emphasis is how it could happen to you too.

I like driving in the snow, to a certain extent. I suppose if I didn’t have a 27-mile drive one way, I wouldn’t worry so much. I used to work just around five miles away. I could always be counted on to show up, for the year that situation worked out. I’m also reminded of the year I worked at Domino’s part-time, and had to show up for my shift as a driver, going in and out of the snow all shift long. You must count your blessings. There comes a point in life, sometimes, in which you notice how important quality time with those you love is, regardless of whether all the debts are being paid on time. Right now, I am simply enjoying the one job I have, though days like today are hard to endure.

It probably would have been fine, if a couple of events hadn’t happened. One, it just kept snowing and snowing (it didn’t stop snowing until I got back home at night.) This wouldn’t be a problem if you are at home, watching the snow through your window with a hot cup of coffee in your lap. The second event/events that happened involved just plain old screwing things up one too many times today. Not that anyone but me was counting. Though my boss seemed to be just as content with my performance, it really bothered me today. That all started with a morning in which too many requests were being fielded in my direction, and when I finally started in on getting some work I wanted done, the program I was testing out kept giving me issues. This often happens, just so you know, but today it was getting to me because I was already so stressed. Add to these facts, I had been listening to a podcast on “jumping off,” where the guy talking had quit his job to pursue something he really wanted to do, and when the time came for him to write a book about other people’s experiences of the same, people came out of the wood-works with their stories. Then Chuck shows me a couple things I hadn’t done right, that he had requested earlier. Sometimes I just get so tired of pleasing people, and wonder if I have room for making myself happy. I’ve been taught throughout my life that you would find happiness in serving others, though at the same time, I have also been taught that there is something you are good at that will make you happy.

Unfortunately, I don’t exactly know what I could be doing that would make me happy, though I can say writing does (though I haven’t found a subject that I could stick with.) When I was growing up, I’m pretty sure that’s the only thing I could envision myself as, though I have always been so practical as to not see a future in something after failing time and time again at creating any worth-while stories. I always fall short. That’s the feeling I was having at work today; that self-defeating feeling that has followed me my whole life. This feeling gets worse when I start screwing something up, even though I don’t have a perfectionist philosophy. In fact, my philosophy is when you fall, you get back up and keep trying. However, this doesn’t mean I’m not going to have to fight the feeling of being a failure. I’m sure a therapist could get to the bottom of why I must fight this.

It seems the enemy of my soul wants me to stay defeated, but I have to ask, why do I matter so much? However, I think we all matter, especially when we begin to look outside of the traps that are set for us here. One of my traps began when I was a kid, when various adults hammered into my head not to screw up. “Stop standing around with your hands in your pockets.” “Why did you do that?!” Sometimes I find myself saying similar things to Declan, and then remember what these have done to me. I want him to be an overcomer in life, and to at least not have to struggle with the same things I have had to. If I had a different mindset in life, maybe I wouldn’t have so much debt, and have to work a job when  I feel like “jumping off.” The guys in the podcast end up saying he didn’t intend for people to simply think of “jumping off” as quitting their jobs, but rather as a way of stepping into something they have been holding back on. I don’t know what my jumping off point will be, but I feel it coming.

-John-

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