There’s an episode from Homeland where Carrie tells Brody there’s little to be “heightened” about anymore. At 34 and with a mind blowing job in the CIA, it’s a bit of a stretch for Claire Danes’ character but the line has stuck with me. It pretty much sums up the feeling or more the numbness, at least for me, of being 48. Nothing heightens my day either Carrie, unless it’s finding an old Starbuck’s gift card at the bottom of my pocketbook promising a quick caffeine rush. Excuse me while I yawn at my lame life.
Without anything to heighten the day, the classic mid life crisis becomes dangerously tempting. I realize how easy it is to succumb to the search for NEW. Even if we avoid the slippery slope, life becomes about our kids’ accomplishments or our favorite detergent on sale which we celebrate with yet another latte. I’m haunted by Carrie’s words and feeling hyper-underachieved at 48. If someone could achieve at underachieving for the last 20 years, that award would belong to me.
So I got a new job. A. Real. Job. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a real job is defined as:
real job \ˈrē(-ə)l\ˈjäb\ – duty/task/function involving sitting at a desk from 830 – 5pm; putting my lunch in a refrigerator next to someone else’s lunch, access to medical/dental benefits and not dressing in something that could be worn to yoga.
And I’m EFFING PUMPED about it. The prospect of NEW people in a NEW office doing NEW work while once in a while popping down to the company cafe (it’s actually called a cafe!) with my potential new bff’s has blown me away – no dangerous CIA job necessary. I start tomorrow so we’ll see if the cafe lives up to the food network experience I’ve created in my mind, and I’m hoping to save the country from a terrorist threat before lunch. Not likely in the accounting profession, but I’m all about the glass half full here people.
Yes, I’m nervous. Yes, I’m scared to death. But if there can be a good scared to death, Carrie, this is it.