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Void Of Course
Void Of Course
Is life meant to have a direction? Are we meant to have goals and ambitions? Is the future meant to be more than just crises to prepare for?
It seems like TV and movies jokingly present concepts like the "five year plan". Colleges sell themselves as helping you to "prepare for the future". Banks want you to invest in your future. But what is this nebulous concept?
One would almost think that with the way that the media presents it, the future is something to think about, to invest in, to prepare for. This would indicate planning, goals, and even desires. Desires for what? Goals to accomplish what?
I don't know.
I'm not sure that I ever knew.
Once, what seems like so long of a time ago now, at the tender high school age, I had aspirations. I was going to join the Air Force as a fighter pilot. Then when I started to age and my reflexes weren't as good I would step down into being a fighter jet mechanic. During this time I would use the Air Force's college assistance to earn degrees in aerospace engineering. And as soon as I could retire with a pension (which doesn't really take long in the military) I was going to go civilian and become an engineer, working on designing the fighter jets of the future, using my knowledge of having been a pilot and a mechanic to provide my designs with that extra polish to please all involved.
That was my ambition, my sole goal in life.
Then the Air Force deemed me color blind and refused to let me do any of these things.
In the end I more or less by accident became a computer programmer, having taken their aptitude tests only on a whim while I worked with my recruiter to figure out what I could actually do.
And since then all I've done is blunder along. Oh, sure, by now I have a rather unfulfilling but high-paying position as a Senior Software Engineer for an enjoyable enough company. It's high-tech cutting-edge crystalographic science, and I get to call myself a GUI specialist and work primarily with user interfaces, layouts, and 3D rendering. I even get to delve into the theoretically impossible (if I were actually color blind, which I'm not) realm of creating icons and graphics. Of course I also have to do the boring documentation, user manuals, and even install applications. I get to work in the wave of the non-Microsoft future of programming, such as Python and Qt. I'd like to think that despite my lack of ever having found the merging of time, money, and transportation to finish any college degree that I'm still highly skilled. I've never lacked motivation or ability to self-teach whatever I need. But in spite of all of this, the one thing that I still lack is an aspiration.
As I look upon the coming dusk of the 'irresponsible age' (I'm nearly **gasp** 30) and consider maybe it's time to start investing in my 401K, I realize that I still have no desires. Oh, I might have whims on occasion. And I had thought that my marriage with all of its inherant challenges (supporting my wife, moving to Australia ... for my wife, having children ... for my wife) was ambition enough, but now it is over (well, almost, only waiting on the legal technicality) and I am once again without a thought to what should lay ahead in my life.
I expect that one day I'll get old. One day I may even be too old to work, assuming that by the time I get that age I can't insert a computer into my brain and continue programming software even while infirm. But ... that's it.
I find myself hating to be alone. I miss having the company of a spouse. But my heart, as hopeful as I would like it to be, seems unable to trust enough to love yet. I hope that is all it is. But what if I never love again? What if I am forever alone? As much as I hate being alone, I don't know that I could commit to permanence for anything less than love. But I don't just want company. I want a confidant, a comrade, a long-term live-in friend, ideally with love and all.
And even then, where is the real aspiration in that? What is the point of finding someone to share with if I have nothing to share?
For over a decade now, heck, for my whole life really when I think about it, I have simply been stumbling around blindly. I have, in spite of myself, accidentally fallen into a future for myself.
But is it a future that brings me any joy? Not really, no.
What would bring me joy then?
I just don't know.
On occasion I consider turning a hobby into a new career. But would that really please me any more? I really don't know. And with the economic stability that I have grown accustomed to, do I dare risk that for a whim? Is possible joy more important than definite security and stability? Could I ever make it as a fantasy/sci-fi author? As an ornamental blacksmith and/or maker of occult parephenalia? As a new-age healer and psychic advisor? As a male prostitute? What possibly hobby that I have enjoyed could actually put food on my table and a roof over my head? Would turning a creativity-inspired hobby into a full-time profession still be as enjoyable, being forced to perform regardless of inspiration or lack thereof?
I just don't know.
Life was so much clearer when I could piggyback upon the dreams of my ex. Being supportive made me happy.
But is living for someone else, even if tempered by living equally for myself, really a noble aspiration? Or is it just a pathetic cop-out? And now that I've no one to live for, how useful of an ambition can it even be?
I just don't know.
I am void of course.
I am a sailor, adrift in an endless expanse, filled with possibility and potential, but without a map, a compas, or even a desire. I don't know where I want to go, and am not even entirely sure if raising my anchor and setting out in any direction is worth it at all, or if I should just be happy with where I am and be glad it's not worse.
Is this meant to be a normal part of life? What am I supposed to do?