Career is a big part of a working person's life. You spend 40 hours a week there, plus time away where you are inevitably thinking about your day, or what it is you have to do tomorrow. I work more than I see my kids - and that fact is never, ever lost on me.
I always thought that if I had to work while I had kids, it would have to be something that was my passion. Something that was spirit lifting. No, I didn't need to save the world, or do something really big - just something that made me personally happy. After all, if I was going to spend that much time away from my kids, then it better be worth it, you know?
I have worked several jobs since going back to work: barista (twice), bong shop, herbal warehouse and sales, transport attendant, commercial janitor, funeral director, and paint sales. In all of those varied professions, and really: from dead bodies, to scrubbing toilets, to distressed furniture - there is a lot of variety there, I have never found that feeling. The feeling that the job itself that I am doing makes me proud. I never felt my cup filling because of my work. So I started to reflect on what it is that does make me proud of myself, what I do enjoy doing, and what does make me feel full. It usually can come back to one thing: my relationships with people.
I am not someone who enjoys being alone, or quiet or in solitude - unless it is for a specific, purposeful reason. I thrive and feed off of relationships. I have never worked in an environment where I truly enjoyed the individual personalities of the people I work with like I do now. Do they sometimes get on my nerves? Of course, after spending 40 hours a week with them, they become family - and you don't always love your family. They support me, they entertain me, they humour me, they listen to the sordid tales that are my life, they show genuine interest in the things that interest me - and hell, they even feed me sometimes.
I am truly truly lucky. I'm not changing the world by selling paint. Being a sales person, if that's all I did, would not be enough for me. I don't even use the paint I sell - I mean I have, it works great, but I'm really not an expert. I don't come home from work happy because I enjoy leaving 40 voicemails in one day. I come home from work happy because I work with amazing people. Because I work for amazing CEO's, who show nothing but kindness and compassion and actually care what I have to say about improving the company or the work environment itself. I come home happy because the people at work make me happy.
I'm beginning to think that that's enough. I shouldn't take it for granted, I don't always need to be searching for something greater, or better. I enjoy where I am, and that's why I stay when it's just paint.