It's not without emotion. I mean, I have a pretty good amount of freedom. But you trade one thing off for another. More money is more freedom in one way- more time is more freedom in another. Somedays it's a little scary to earn way less. But then you weigh the pros and cons. A day in the sun on bikes/ hiking in the trees/ visiting with friends vs more money/ more prestige/ more supposed security. It is a little tricky to wrap your mind around.
I'm still in a career where I'm sequestered to a black windowless room for most of the daylight hours to earn my money. It's hard to commit to any more days than I'm doing- I feel trapped in there and exhausted with patients' burdens most days. Recently I was out to lunch with one of my friends who is a social worker and she said, "Look up Secondary Trauma and Mindfulness Training." I haven't done this but maybe I should. Maybe I should look up "Caregiver Syndrome". I remember one of my friends saying she would ask herself, "Do you like to be the martyr?" I sometimes wonder too.
Years of taking on family burdens and then adding patient care means that I spend too much time trying to do things for other people to make their lives nicer. It is often without equal reciprocity and I end up feeling drained. This is a good part of the reason why I don't want to add more days in the clinic. Patient care is a one-way energy drain for the most part. I find it overwhelming.
At home today I tried to switch the places of the trash and the recycling because I keep hitting my head on the low cabinet over the recycling. You would think after five to seven times of hitting my head on the cabinet I could learn that it is there and stop hitting my head. But apparently I am proprioceptally challenged and cannot learn this. So I tried to switch the locations of the bins but this was overruled. So I am left with either never touching the recycling or probably hitting my head again. I don't know what else I can do.
Sometimes it is the small things like repeatedly hitting your head that sort of makes you hit the wall and think what the hell is this life about? Here I sit and try so hard, for what? And of course it is all meaningless. And you never know when the shit is going to hit the fan so why even try?
But the next morning comes and maybe you forget. So you make your coffee and head to work and do it all again. Until the day you hit your head again and think it is a stupid life.