So often, I hear the world encouraging us to find something we love and to do it. Do what you love. Work won't seem so much like work when you love doing it. But how often is that really truly possible? Is this lie that the Milennials are perpetuating really truth? If everyone did what they love, who would do the not so fun stuff? Or is our world so perfect that we can truly reconcile every single job to someone who would truly love doing it?
My mom made a comment today while we were facetiming with her about how bored I must be. She can't grasp what I must do all day with three kids in tow. On the contrary, I am never truly bored. There is only a rare occasion when there is nothing to be cleaned, organized, cooked, or nowhere to drive to. I am maybe honestly genuinely bored with my life about once a week when all the chores have been done, all the kids have been fed, and my kids are fed up with running errands or making trips to the park or mall and just want to hang out at home.
I think in many ways, I have found that I am loving what I do. I am finding ways to be more efficient, noting the time it takes to unload the dishwasher, re-organizing things here and there to make it easier to find, doing one load of laundry a day and feeling accomplished when it gets into the drawers, and teaching my kids to clean up during the day (yes, even if they're just going to take it out again, because isn't that after all, what life is all about? Doing over and over and improving along the way?). I am finding so much joy in simple things. In perfect balancing a meal for my kids at lunch and then sweeping the crumbs and droppings away right after, in making the bed as my kids jump onto the mattress, a minor obstacle now, in packing the right snacks and drinks as we venture off to the mall playground on our own for a break, or in practicing some letters, reading books, or playing together. And the day goes by quickly, the week even quicker, and then I am at a new week once more.
It's hard to see the big picture sometimes when I'm stuck with poopy diaper after poopy diaper after poopy diaper changes. It's hard to imagine the mundane things I've managed to find meaning in will mean much in the long run. Nobody will care that I've fed the kids, changed their diapers, given them baths, or cleaned the house. But I still find joy in it. Like I can take a nap whenever I want with the help of the crib and a television/ipad/iphone. Like I can eat whatever I want for lunch since I'm making it. Like I can dictate what we eat on a weekly basis because I am meal planning and grocery shopping. Like I can go to the mall during the day and just roam around aimlessly as I please. Like I can post some thoughts on the internet as my kids play with the toys right by me at 11 AM on Friday morning.
I think about when I was in audit. Did I truly love my job then? Yes, I found joy in copying and pasting, in detailed testing, writing memos, and creating excel spreadsheets. Of course I didn't truly enjoy that! But I enjoyed the teamwork, the young people I worked with and the friends I made and the inside jokes we had during the day, while we commiserated over free fancy dinners at our work desks, and continued to work through the night and then met up for happy hour once work was done as if we couldn't get enough of each other. I loved the perks of the job, the free travel, the free branded stuff, the free weekend community activities, and the experience that was adding to my resume, helping me to catapult myself for something greater in the future. It was the whole package that I loved. And it was that experience that prepared me for the multitasking, difficult people, problem solving thing called parenthood that I so entertain these days.
Love what you do.