I found another one of those little scraps of paper in my jeans pocket today. This one reminds me to write about some particular language, look up a former professor on the internet, buy Halloween candy in case we get any trick-or-treaters this year, and work on something that is illegibly smudged out.
What I did, instead, for the third night in a row, is read. Nothing scholarly tonight, just archive diving on a couple of “new favorite” blogs, trying on other people’s lives. Now Spouse has gone to bed and I can borrow a bit of time for my own.
It occurred to me a few weeks ago that while a sacred calling is a gift beyond measure, there are times when that gift takes the form of a floppy hand-knit sweater – hot, itchy, purple-and-orange plaid, doesn’t go with anything already in my life, and with about two sizes worth of room to grow into. (The Universe has a sense of humor, indeed.) This evening it quietly occurred to me that maybe I’m starting to grow into this person I’m turning into. Maybe, just a little.
It’s pretty telling, in retrospect, that I’ve always had trouble with the definitions of vocation and avocation – despite being a language nerd with enough Latin to be dangerous. I knew that “vocation” meant, in popular use, one’s career – or at least livelihood – and “avocation” was a hobby or recreational pursuit. And I knew that one of these words had the older, now secondary, meaning of one’s life’s work, one’s calling. But etymology notwithstanding, I have fought for years to remember which of these words it was. Neither of them seemed to fit. I think, in part, this resistance was telling me that neither my livelihood nor my recreational life were, in truth, my life’s work.
Four months ago I was in “Uh-oh…” territory.
Three months ago it was depths of “Oh, holy s – – t.”
By three weeks ago I’d settled into a wide-eyed “O…kay, then….”
I keep digging. This evening I started thinking there might be an “Oh hell yes!” under all this holy s – – t.
Oh hell yes.