In Hope Floats, the character played by Harry Connick, Jr. is a beautiful carpenter. He is building a house in the woods that is only for himself. By day he paints other people’s houses. When asked why he would do such a thing he describes the American dream a little differently than we usually think of it. He sees it as something that would make him turn the thing he loves into something else entirely – a money-maker – until he doesn’t even recognize it anymore and certainly cannot remember what he loved about it.
It’s Sunday night. And I do not have the Sunday blues exactly. My job is the perfect balance to my life and to my day, and I don’t face it with dread yet. Hopefully I never will. Still, it’s not the pretty little copy of Wuthering Heights that I am reading for a book club. It’s not the memoir I just got through reading that took my breath away with its perfection*. It’s not the book I’m writing or the ideas page filled with books I’d like to write. It’s not my blog, which has a pretty new look** that I love, inspiring me to keep it up-to-date with interesting posts. It’s not the Rilla screenplay I dream of writing or the marketing plan I need to put in place for my memoir or the business cards I should probably have printed for the creative conference I’m going to this month.
I love these things. And it’s so hard to let them go right now that I have been staying up well into the night to practice them. And a part of me certainly wishes the week days were filled a little more with these. But it strikes me, a la Justin Matisse, that I probably would not love them in the same engrossing way if life were different and I did them for money. So, I think for a while I’ll embrace the Sunday night feeling that comes with letting them go and feel grateful that the bills do not depend on these. For me, vacation is a ribboned bookmark in a classic and blank pages on a MacBook screen, and it comes around every eight hours or so.
*The beautiful memoir? It’s Jesus, My Father, The CIA, and Me: A Memoir. . . of Sorts by Ian Cron.
*If you read by email, feel free to click through to the site and see the new look! This is the pretty new identifier. I call it my seal of approval.