Every morning I ate a muffin because I was sad. It was green, pistachio flavored. It didn’t help so I washed it down with a giant flavored latte.
Every night we drank. I gained sixty pounds. We drank because it filled the awkwardness. And I thought it would relax me. Release.
Drinking leads to bad spending decisions.
I was uncomfortable in my body and I was in debt. I added a giant face-hiding beard. I let the world know: damaged man here. The walking wounded.
And one day, nothing changed.
I didn’t get a summons to go to magic school. No wanderer stopped by my door, seeking someone with just my talents. Every day came the same as the last.
The only thing that changed was me. I got fed up. The years started to run together and every month was a rerun. I took the same beating at my second job that I took at my first job, and finally I decided I’m not the economy’s flogging boy.
When we feel trapped we dream. We dream of the day we will be called away to a life of excitement. Every story opens this way, because it’s what we want so, so badly.
But the universe would let me toil forever. I could stress, work, dodge my boss, drink, overspend, and stress again every week until I died.
There is no hero’s call.
If you believe in the stories, you have to be able to edit out the parts that are fiction. Everyone is able to adventure. But the fear of it will hold you back, will push you down into a life of repetition. The adventure will always be “out there” or, worse, a fairy tale.
When you choose to adventure—whatever that means to you—powerful forces will try to stop you. You will lose friends. The bills will look too high. Your family will object. How can you throw your life away?
Your life is yours to spend.
Society may have uses for it. The economy would gladly spend it all, mortgage it and spend it a second time. But it’s yours, your one and only jewel, and you can redeem it as you see fit.
If you want to dream about adventure, read Delilah Dirk. It’s a charming story. I read it in between writing for clients.
But then as I fall asleep at night, my eyes open and I ask: why am I still here? Why am I dreaming? How am I not out on the road, chasing my own fate?
I stay awake at night, and plan my next adventure.