This little coin bank sits on my desk, at work:
Every now and then, I’ll toss some change in there. I’ve never filled it completely, so I have no idea how much it holds. Maybe enough to buy myself lunch one day, if I get lucky and find a bunch of quarters inside.
I’ve been daydreaming a lot about finding a new job. Maybe even changing careers.
Part of it is residual angst over last week’s suckfest, but part of it is also that I work in a field in which we deal with cancer patients (and caregivers) who contact us when they are at their most vulnerable. Understandably, we don’t see them at their best. Sometimes they yell at us. Often, they cry.
I’m a nurturer. And I can listen. Ordinarily, I can deflect their emotions, and not absorb them. However, I’m struggling with that, at the moment. I know it’s because I just lost my dad, and I’m still processing that loss. When I get these calls, it’s like grief sticking to grief. I’m basically a giant emotional magnet. And right now, it’s wearing on me.
I’m good at my job. And there are huge parts of it that I enjoy: I get to be creative; I have a variety of responsibilities that keep me challenged and stimulated; I get to help people.
And as an INFJ, I’ve always felt compelled to work in the helping/healing field.
But maybe I need to reconsider this.
Someone sent me this blog post, today: What Are the Best Careers for Bipolar People?
Pretty timely, right?
Well, first, I had no idea people with bipolar disorder cannot become cops, or enlist in the armed forces–so, basically, anything that would allow us to carry a gun. That figures. I guess that means Army Ranger is out. And probably so is bounty hunter.
When I’m hypomanic, I daydream about quitting my job and doing something really creative with my life. I’ve considered:
- freelance writer
- floral designer
- interior designer
- photographer/sculptor/painter/performance artist
Since my creativity tends to come in short little bursts (with my mania), these are probably not great career choices for me. Nevermind that I have limited talent for most of those jobs. And by limited talent, I mean none.
Since I experience rapid-cycling, I’ve already figured out that I am not well suited for high stress jobs like:
- trauma surgeon
- tightrope walker
- bomb diffuser (that’s a job, right?)
- meth cooker (anyone else watch Breaking Bad?)
I understand grief enough to know that I shouldn’t make any major life decisions for at least six months. Probably longer. I’ve promised my therapist and Michael that I won’t just up and quit my job. And I don’t know that, that is ultimately what I want to do. It’s just comforting to know that I could be doing other things with my life, that don’t involve desperation and suffering, and often times…death.
I could work for a non-profit that has a completely different focus.
I could switch careers entirely, and become a personal chef (I did go to culinary school, you know!).
I could learn how to become a dog trainer.
Eh, I guess we’ll see how I feel in six months. Right now it just feels good to know that I have options.