(Not sure what's happened - Posted an entry recently, notified people and what-have-you...but now it's gone. Frustrating...but in any case, this was "the centerpiece of the piece", as it were.)
Corresponded with a friend recently.
They applauded my "tenacity", and expressed a light dusting of regret for, basically, "taking the easy out" in their life.
I've been pondering why so many people, few of whom are any more intelligent or capable then me, have lives that, by any objective standard, are tremendously more successful.
And you know what I came up with?
They made decisions.
They committed to SOMETHING (Or maybe I should say, "They COMMITTED to something").
You think you "took the easy way out", and that may be - you know better than I do - but once you did, you committed to it. You learned what you needed to learn, you stuck with it, and you reaped the rewards of having expertise, of being dependable, of "sticking with it", etc.
My "fatal flaw", the thing I now think has ruined my life - and my life really is a "ruin" at this point - is that I opted to stay in "No Man's Land" for a huge chunk of my adult life, too fearful to commit to "What I really wanted to do", but unwilling to "give up the fantasy" to embrace the life and responsibilities of adulthood.
You think you took "the easy way out"? I'm in my 50s, and I've never held a job that couldn't have been performed by a reasonably intelligent high-school sophomore. All so I could jerk off to the fantasy that "Someday I'll go to Hollywood and become a star...".
Now I've bumbled along for the past dozen plus years, starting, at forty, what should have been my career since I got out of high school, and all I have to show for it, really, is the knowledge that "I kinda/sorta gave it a shot" - It's becoming clear that I'm not going to "make it", and I have no "fallback", so all I can really do is keep trying to get at least my little handful of nothing jobs until I can't anymore.
And what happens then?
Well, let's just say, it ain't gonna be PRETTY.
You may have the "What if?" thing that gnaws at you now and again, but from where I'm sitting, you've done way better for yourself than old Mr "Afraid-To-Commit-But-Afraid-To-Settle" here; If I'd made a decision at some point early on, one way or another, it's hard to imagine I wouldn't be better off.
But I didn't, and here I am.
In short, I think I started being "tenacious" twenty years too late. Now it's not really being "tenacious', it's just being STUCK - I can't retreat now, even if I wanted to, because there's really nowhere and nothing to retreat to.
If you hadn't guessed, this stuff has been much on my mind of late (It's the Diaryland entry I keep avoiding). What do you do when you determine you're NOT going to be the "one in a million" who actually gets to "live the dream"?