Sitting around waiting for someone to hit you over the head with the next thing that you’re supposed to be doing, because this awful character trait carried over from childhood still persists in spite of all of your attempts to rid yourself of it.
In the meantime, you involve yourself briefly with this or that activity or subject, but you are just a big flirt, a dilettante. You can’t commit to any particular field or profession or subject matter, and yet you want more than anything to be known for being the best in the world at one particular thing. Specialists in any field, who have spent decades pursuing their art/craft/science, are going to block you at every turn unless you are ready to persist and show them what you are made of.
Isn’t that an utterly American thing, anyway, also carried from high school–to prove to the entire world that you are utterly exceptional at something? On some days, you’d rather be miserable at what you’re doing and the best at it, than be completely happy with what you’re doing as an amateur of no account.
If a thing makes you happy doing it, and it isn’t destroying you physically or spiritually or wrecking your finances and home life, then why not keep doing it? You don’t need to ever be known by some group of people as the best X,Y,Z…surely, you have seen enough that nobody knows a specialist outside of a few fields like entertainment and politics (or is that redundant?)
But, there is something more at play here, than simply becoming a great somebody at something. There is also the pervasive sense of pursuing the Truth about who you are and what the world is. You want only the sure things, the things you can with confidence say to yourself that you know them, even if you can’t necessarily prove them to anyone else. You know your own self to be a certain way–there is a hard floor that you land on when you try too hard to be somebody that you are not.
It’s really unfortunate that you let others try to lift you up off of that hard floor–though you do it less and less now that you are a 41-year old man. You don’t get caught up in the faddish pursuits of the young, or become excited about a new thing just to make yourself feel relevant and with it.
You know that you are probably going to die doing this one thing the most–sitting here and writing this way each week for a few minutes at a time. You aren’t going to take up skydiving or become known for having developed the next killer app. You might go back to dabbling in painting and music, and read the occasional popular math book or slip back into being all caught up in Jesus and stuff, but you know that none of these things will ever consume you and transform you the way that being a husband and father have. You aren’t going to become a triathlete or take up drag racing or wearing drag.
You have settled on the few things that you like and don’t like and you don’t particularly care if they aren’t the important and relevant things humanity craves from you or the Universe Really Wanted You to Do. The Universe is rather silent on the matter, and humanity is quite fickle about what it things is the most important and relevant thing to be obsessed with. A society that can elect a man like Trump as their leader and produce so many famous people who are famous for being famous is a society that isn’t really aligned with your own internal sense of what is important and what isn’t.