vomiting newborn

I have two regular jobs. They’re interesting but not passionate. about a year ago i had a series of light bulb passionate moments, and tried to turn my passion into a tiny job #3.  being an international arriving in a foreign country gives you a different perspective on ‘what this place needs’… you know, bar room talk like: What this place needs is a hot dog stand.  What this place needs is an English-speaking psychologist who specializes in law of attraction.  What this place needs is a Starbucks.  What this place needs is a crunchy granola breakfast place that serves free range eggs and nitrate free bacon (like my favorite one back home in Vermont).

Most of these ‘bar room’ ideas won’t work. And you begin to think that your idea won’t work either. I mean, if it’s such a great idea why hasn’t someone else done it? This place needs a running group just for slow runners, not elite athletes, just people who want to get off the couch (like couch to 5K but in real-life).  This place needs a big swapmeet/flea market/buy&sell shop just for vinyl albums.  This place needs a fine arts daycare/after-school program for latchkey kids.  This place needs kids’ music classes that aren’t so serious – how about teaching them music but doing it through teaching them the Beatles …

like i said, most bar room ideas don’t work. but they’re really cool dreams.

i had one of these cool dreams, and a year ago I started to to poke away at it.  frankly i didn’t care if it didn’t work financially because i loved doing it so much.

then in March something happened:

when this hobby/passion started to really take off and be successful back in March, i had to quit drinking for 5 days straight to make it through a big client job (cuz this is all in addition to my regular job).  i knew then that to deliver the kind of work it required, i would not be able to drink at all. i remember i pulled an all-nighter, and celebrated by having a bath in the morning with a cup of tea before crawling into bed at 9 am.  now i realize that this passion — the work it requires, the sacrifices in time — it is what led me to KNOW that i had to quit drinking (eventually) for good.  There just wasn’t room in my life for passion and booze.  i knew that booze had to go, even then, even back in March (4 months before i actually quit). there was never any question about not pursuing the passion once it got hold of me.

Then my small puttering at #3 led me to the Big Contract.  Then my smaller clients seemed to love me MORE. then i preached (to myself) to avoid exhaustion at all costs.

I’m sure everyone with a newborn would say they’re exhausted but it’s worth it! i’m sort of like someone with a newborn – EXCEPT i get to control when my newborn cries and i get to control how much sleep i have … at first i was just so damn thrilled that #3 was working (after a year of very small successes). now it’s like “ok, what happened to my regularly scheduled lazy life?”  and while i will be fine, i have to find a new normal …

And I can happily and thankfully say that drinking never comes up as an option on how to unwind.  Even as recently as the end of September, when exhausted i would think of drinking.  That reflex or instinct seems to have left me now. There’s just not a shit hope in hell of me having a drink and being able to thrive in my current life. The only analogy i can think of … it’d be like being up with a colicky newborn at 3 a.m., and the baby is vomiting every twenty minutes, and you think that drinking two bottles of wine would make it better … it is Just. Not. Possible.

finally, i wonder if it’s ridiculous to continuously refer to my “job #3 passion/thingy” … maybe it’s already clear what i’m doing. Is it a little bit irritating when people share parts of their story but not all of it? (i know, i know, we all want some anonymity but i’m wondering what that serves exactly, in my case, and honestly now it feels weirdly pretentious to keep talking about something without saying what it is… it feels forced now).

i think i’ll have a contest where you guess what #3 is (everyone except Mrs D can guess).

what are your thoughts on “what this place needs” or “exhaustion” or “filling your life with passion” or what my “#3 job passion/thingy” is?

Or you can just press “Like” and keep going … : ) Happy Saturday everyone!


I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • Still reading your blog posts through from the start 🙂 My guess is that your ‘#3 passion thingy’ is supplying cafes with some kind of sweet food thing. Like those trendy cupcakes or macarons or ‘health florentines’…

  • I have a few ideas, an event planner, interior decorator or website designer. Whatever it is, I am happy for you that you are doing something that you are passionate about. Food luck with job#3!

  • I’ve been wondering for a while! I have a “passion thingy” and that involves volunteering and hopefully starting a nonprofit one day. I can’t imagine what — or where (for some reason, I’m thinking ex-Soviet Bloc) you are, but it sounds so exciting! (I can imagine my life getting way too busy to even think about drinking, but that’s just doing my grind, which is freelancing. I can’t imagine — yet — having the energy to volunteer and do nonprofit work on the side…)

  • I have absolutely no idea what it is that you do. But I don’t think telling us would break the anonymity barrier. Granted, there are those that Google everyone and everything, and I imagine there are those who will figure out who you are. But I don’t think that would be a bad thing. My only reason for not posting more personal information is because my ex husband is a click away and I really don’t care to deal with him in regards to my sobriety anymore.

  • I have absolutely no imagination so I really have NO idea. But even though I have no imagination it doesn’t mean I’m not nosy as hell. I am DYING to know! 🙂

  • Fill your life with passion. Stay up all night building quilts for a hope that someday you may sell one. Oh, that’s my dream, sorry.

    What’s #3 ? A book you are writing about sobering up? Nah, too easy.

    Cutting an album wherein you play the harp for Pres and Mrs Obama and their girls?

    Starting an Amway chapter in your community? Or a kids transportation company in your town?

    Happy Weekend, I’m headed for bed too…

    • building quilts sounds fabulous. a great passion. you can listen to podcasts, you get to work with beautiful colors and textures and patterns. you sell out and get famous and demand outstrips supply.
      playing the harp sounds pretty fun, i can nearly picture it. writing a book would also be cool, totally within realm.
      “fill your life with passion” indeed : )