I’ve been hammered at work for the last few months. I don’t mean in the drinking sense, just physically and mentally. Driving upwards of two hundred miles a day. Sitting stationary on the motorway, whilst attempting to drive upwards of two hundred miles a day. Carrying out a full days work, in-between attempting to drive upwards of two hundred miles a day.
I love my job and I don’t mind travelling for it either. I’ve always done it, for the best part of twenty years I’ve been an engineer on the road, but when you leave Swindon at 4pm on a Friday and don’t make your presence known in Tiverton until over three hours later, well that really saps the fun out of it all. Recently, this type of journey home hasn’t been unique either.
All of this consumption of time, over which I’ve had very little control, has been detrimental to the things I love. I’ve barely written a thing over the last twelve months, mentally I haven’t been able to, and this has developed into feelings of resent. Yes we’ve moved house, yes the renovations took their toll, but I’ve done the house thing before and I was prepared for exactly what that entailed.
Throw in fatigue, and frustration over the lack of creativity due to fatigue. I’ve looked at beer in a different way recently, it’s probably looked back at me in a different way too, wondering what the hell is going on, or rather, what isn’t going on. I’ve still drank the stuff, but more so to just chill and unwind; all creativity stops at this point.
Frustration builds, fatigue pinches and the tiredness becomes relentless; you can see where this is going. I too saw where it was going, and decided to stop the morose cycle of depressing torment that my life was becoming.
We’re having a baby, our first human baby anyway. We have two fur babies, Betty and Dot our West Highland terriers. There is a metal baby too however, the 2cv. Laura and I have been together for just over ten years, although our relationship began a little further back in the history books. Browsing through family photos shortly after the parental introduction, we discovered that we attended the same play school. That unbeknown closeness always remained present, as during high school we remained in touch. We attended different high schools but shared friends outside and would often meet; little did we know that in our late twenties we would regain contact, and that contact would be for good. We lost touch after our GCSE’s, but with the aid of Facebook we took control of our history and made it our present, and our future.
I digress, we’re having our first baby and I’m frustrated at the path my work is taking. So I’ve made a change. I’ve decided to put down my tools, leave life on the road and take an office based job in my home town of Exeter. It’s still electrical, but it will be closer to home and my wife. Both Laura and I grew up in Exeter and I spent eighteen years of my life working on Marsh Barton Industrial Estate. I will now be returning and to start a job which will allow me to not only spend more time with my growing family, but will enable me to take back some of the control which has been out of my grasp for too long.
Having no control over your life, or the direction in which it is travelling, can have a huge impact. It can be a whirlwind of pure delight as your ride the wave, or in my case, you can sink into the trough of insignificance and obscurity. Obscurity, in terms of uniqueness can be a positive thing, but insignificance, or the mere thought of it, is depressing. But fading away is not, and will never be an option. Times get tough and shit drags you down, but you have to remember why you are doing this.
I’ve made this change because I could feel insignificance lurking and did not want it to take a hold of me. I’d recently started to question my own relevance, not just in the world of beer, but generally. Do I matter? Do I really matter? The answer is, of course I do. But all that fatigue and frustration is pretty hard to shake off or get the better of.
We all matter, we all really matter. We all make a difference in our own obscure way, and people love us for it.
I’m not about to hang up my blogging shoes and take a back seat while the world passes me by. I’m taking steps to improve my life, my family’s life, regain control and fall back in love with the things I love doing.
It may not be the quickest thing I’ve ever done, but I know in the long run it will be for the best.
And you know what, that feeling of being in control is the best feeling you can ever have.