before Jared and i got married, we were given the most amazing advice i think i've ever heard: unspoken expectations will go unmet, every single time. is that not the most true thing on the planet? i can't rightfully expect Jared to bring me home a box of mike & ike's if i haven't told him that i want some. i can't expect my students to enforce the rules if i haven't explained that to them. and so on and so on.
and so i've been learning so much about expectation lately and i'm learning that not only do unspoken expectations fail to come to fruition, but so expectations that are falsely on pedestals. let me explain.
i thought i was called to be a writer. or, i thought i was a writer. or maybe i think i am a writer. hmm. i decided i liked the sounds of my own words put together, so i started this little electronic corner of the world, added the proper labels to my Twitter bio, and checked off "find life purpose" from my to-do list. and i waited for the book deals and the freelance opportunities and the we'll-pay-you-to-travel-and-write-about-it jobs to all come a-knocking.
but they haven't come.
and so i've been all grumpy or moody or angsty as i wait, and i secretly spy on people who have all these opportunities that i wanted, or that i think i wanted. and i've just been sitting, moody, waiting, coveting, secretly hoping to one day wake up and be shauna neiquist. or something. and these ambiguous writer jobs, they're on pedestals in my mind, sitting atop these high towers of perfection where i've placed them, because that's where i thought they belonged. because i think if i achieve that, then i'll be perfectly happy. and on a daily basis, i would wake up and take my lap top to a coffee shop or a bookstore or a park and i'd type type type away all day long. i'd blog some, i'd draft some, i'd edit some, i'd delete some. i'd sip and write, all day long. stories and pretty words and maybe a few book tours now and then, public speaking engagements, interviews...etc. and i'd spend my days with computer screens instead of people. and i'd write emails instead of having conversations. and i'd strategize marketing techniques instead of help college graduates search for jobs.
and i guess i'm just learning that there are things i am gifted at, and there are things i'm not. i'm not meant for a career without daily deep relationships with people. i need eye contact and laughter and time together. i can't have a career with minimal people interaction -- i get bored after 10 minutes by myself! how have i forgotten this? i've had these coveted careers on a pedestal because my expectations were all off. i wanted a job people would think was fun and sparkly, not a job no one has ever heard of. i wanted a job that would keep me caged to a computer screen, with thousands of admirers waiting on my every word.
but that isn't who i am, and i wish i hadn't forgotten that for so long.
and i know it isn't you who needs to read all of this; it's me.