Tomorrow is the one year anniversary of my employment at my current job. Yep, to me it’s a job. It’s not a career because it’s not a field really. I am a support analyst. I guess you could say being an analyst is a career, but for me it’s work.
My tendencies have always been artistic. But, for the cash I have denied a HUGE part of myself in search of the almighty dollar. I want a comfortable life, a good home, and to be able to travel, and to give my future children things I didn’t have when I was growing up.
Everything I had ever learned about artists is that they are always poor, and must be supported by a benefactor, better known as a husband if said artist is a woman. My role model, my grandmother and a wonderful artist was. Of course, that’s because she was married in the forties and women just didn’t work. She was fiercely independent though, and had my grandfathers family not been very traditional in that regard I believe she would have.
I too am very independent, and since I was brought up in modern times, I have been allowed to make my own way. It’s really expected these days that a woman have her own career. It’s really begun to sink in that I have sacrificed a great deal fitting into that mold.
When I am not at work I spend most of my time drawing, taking photos, and gardening. I read books that transport me to new worlds. I create necklaces and purses, and I knit booties and sweaters. The list goes on and on. I wish that I could spend my days making ugly things beautiful, or turning a blank canvas into a work of art.
In a lot of ways my grandmother was blessed that she was able to spend so much time on her art, and that my grandfather nurtured her calling. I do wonder though, how much of a burden it was to not have the independence she longed for.
Last month I enrolled in a graphic design program; It happens to be what I was going to do right out of high school. Thinking back, I should have followed my original plan. Maybe I would love my career these days instead of toiling away at a job counting the days until I can do what I should have done.
I suppose most people have the same feeling about what they do, or could have done. I am not naive enough to think I am alone.
Here’s to hoping that next year, I will not be reciting the same rant.