I am waiting at the counter for the man to pour the coffee.
-Susan Vega, “Tom’s Diner”
I’m at The Well, a coffee shop in Brentwood, Tennessee on a weekday afternoon. Not too long ago there wouldn’t be a reasonable way I’d be here, now, at this time of day. So to say I’m experiencing things I didn’t plan on is not only true, it’s my every day reality.
For today’s adventure, I brought along 2 books: The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick and Immersion by Mark McNees. Matthew Quick is the guy who wrote Silver Linings Playbook, and if memory serves me correctly, Mark McNees is someone I heard speak at St. Teresa Beach church last summer. Look at me, reading!
To tell the truth, I almost ordered a Kindle so I could read books that way. But I’m glad I didn’t. What is it about holding a real book, turning real pages, reading letters printed on real paper that’s refreshingly old-fashioned? I almost hold my books out as I’m walking to and from the coffee shop like a talented athlete carries around a football as if to say, “Look at me!”
In The Good Luck of Right Now, the author writes that for every bad thing that happens, something good happens, too. So for instance, if you recently got in a car accident, someone else might have got a bonus at work. That sort of thing. In my case, my life might contain both the bad and the good in being laid off (the “bad”), and what comes from it (the “good”). In the book Immersion, it’s about the author’s swim from Alcatraz to the San Francisco shoreline, a recreation of what a few prisoners may or may not have done decades ago, and also the plot of the movie Escape From Alcatraz starring Clint Eastwood. But the author uses his preparation for the difficult challenge, as well as the actual swim, as a comparison to loving and trusting God even when it’s not so easy. These are both books I really enjoy reading so if you try to take either from me, I’d ask you, “Do you feel lucky, punk? Well, do ya?”
Settle down, it’ll all be clear.
-Phillip Phillips, “Home”
It’s important to me to stay active in the days, weeks, and months after being laid off. I don’t want to settle down too much into a routine as I navigate this new world of mine… not having a job. However, stepping back and taking a breath has been rejuvenating.
What’s my next career? That’s a question I’ve been asking myself lately. There’s nothing sure about the rest of 2015, but I will say this: I’m so happy this life change happened at age 36 than 26. 10 years ago I bet I’d be panicking right about now. But me, in this moment, today at the Well, I’m excited about the potential of the future!
-Out of the Wilderness