My feelings towards being a journalist can only be compared to that of a roller coaster.
One day I love it, the next day I’m on the brink of tears and then another day I just want to rip somebody’s head off.
I think a big part of the “up and down-ness” is that I can’t decide if getting to hear stories for a living is a good thing or a bad thing.
Let me explain: I love that I get paid to talk to a woman about her first day of teaching a kindergarten class or a guy working to make the world’s largest hush puppy.
I get to sit, listen, ask all the questions I want and then write it up in a neat package so that other people get the same experience as me.
Then I think about the woman who told me about biking cross-country. As soon as I left the interview, I thought, “I want to do that.”
Have I? No.
I listen to incredible people doing incredible things and then go to my desk and write about it. I think my wavering feelings have a lot to do with my thinking that I’m not experiencing life. I’m just meeting other people who have.
I’m not biking cross-country. I’m not joining the roller derby team. I’m not even volunteering with organizations making a difference in the community.
A lot of this could change, I know that. I also could start sending all my money to Africa like I always vocally say people with enormous wealth should do — but I don’t.
I feel like I’m taking a back seat while other people make the change in the world I would like to see.
I sometimes have the fleeting thought of up and quitting my job to do the things that would make a great story. The things that I think would make for an interesting life. The things I think would make a difference in the world.
Then the sensible side of me overrides my thoughts with words like income, insurance and stability.
I feel stuck between a life and a lack thereof. Like I’m just a complacent reporter who sometimes gets to write really cool stories.
My hope, however, is that this won’t always be the case. I’ll just keep my eyes and ears open and wait for God to open the door.