I have come to the conclusion recently that living in suburban Northeast Ohio is to me what Waiting For Godot was for Beckett. I think that the part of my journey, which did lead me to this bucolic setting, has ended. But, now that I am here, and I have someone important rooting me here, I cannot extract myself from this environment.
I am incredibly bored with my very comfortable life. I adore my wife and I would sooner cut off my testicles as not be with her. But, I do not know what to do with myself. Other than work, and doing family/marriage things, I am at a loss as to what to do with myself.
The town that I live in is really a very nice bedroom community, outside Cleveland. It is the kind of place many people would love to raise their children. But, the thing is, I have an 18-year old step-son, graduating from high school next month, starting at college in the fall (living at home) and we are not having any more children. I think I have the problem that 95% of Americans long for: we are modertely well-off, we live relatively modestly, and since myery work is really not all that challenging (or interesting, for that matter), I don't know what to do with myself. We don't have to worrry so much about survival stuff. And, we now have a pretty damned good marriage and family life. And, without these challanges before me, I find myself coming home in the evening, and getting very, very antsy, not knowing what to do with myself, not knowing where to direct my "creative juices" or my energy.
I know that this is all a hell of my own making. We have moderate financial sucess, and a small family, and that is cool: I like it that way. I am (rather surprisingly) quite OK with not having any children of my own. But, (and s is a big BUT), I have not pursued any of my real passions as part of my career. And, that is OK. I made that trade-off. But, I don't know what to do about this vague sense of dissatisfaction, lack of direction and general angst I feel. I feel stiffled and lost, and i have no idea what to do about it.
If I wasn't attached, I would so be out of Ohio, off to Brooklyn or Chicago or even Seattle, or San Fran. Honestly, I would probably move back to NY. In the past year, for the first time, since i have left, I feel a calling back home. When I was a kid, NY pretty much sucked ass: crime-ridden, racial tensions and no one lived anywhere but a couple of neighborhoods in the city and Long Island, Jersey, Westchester (mainly because you would probably get a cap in your ass, if you lived anywhere else). But, now, NY has completely changed. And, I am fucking shocked. And, now that NY is a great place to live again, I have absolutely no chance of being here, if I want to continue to be married to the woman I adore. Fucking irony: kicks my ass.
I watch too much television. And, I must tell you: even despite a few rather interesting and innovative television series on in recent years (Lost, House), television is 98% shit.
Here is the biggest problem for me. I really don't know what I want. I read a book review today (at Times online) of Stumbling On Happiness by Daniel Gilbert. Very intersting research and thesis. Gilbert apparently came to some interesting conclusions: apparently human beings generally have no idea what will make them "happy." And what think will make them happy, usually has nothing to do with what actually will do so.
This counter-intuitive conclusion actually makes a hell of a lot of sense. Gilbert's argument in the book is that we often delude ourselves as to what we really want. We misperceive reality, and "then use those misperceptions to build a mistaken view of the future."
This is the situation I find myself in now. And, I am not exactly sure about how to find the fulfillment I seek. Or even where to begin that search.