The other day I had a conversation with the guy that I talked about in my last blog and podcast. He wanted to clear some things up that I talked about in the podcast and communicate what he was thinking. Overall it was a good conversation. There were a few things that I walked away thinking about and ended up having more questions, not necessarily for him, but in general.
One of the things he said was he could tell when we got together that I was somewhat bored with my job and that at times he thought I seemed a little scattered and that I was looking for things that made me happy and because of that he felt like I was having a bit of an identity crisis. Now that I've lost my job it was like I'm having a bit of a mid-life crisis. So from what I remember of our discussion he made it seem like that's why he broke things off...I guess. So like they say on Shark Tank, "For those reasons I'm out!" By the way, I still think that another reason is that there's a lot that's fallen on to his plate and it was easier to remove me because we hadn't dated long versus sticking it out.
After we got off the phone, I did feel better, but I also felt like me going through this big transition period was the reason I'm not able to have a relationship. Like there was part of me that kinda felt like it was my fault even though I know that's not true. Like somehow because I didn't have it all figured out and had a plan together of what I'm going to do, that I'm less desirable or less worthy of dating. Which is ridiculous I know.
So with that being said, let's go over some of those things that stuck out to me.
1. Mid-life Crisis - Well statistically he would be correct. Since I'm over the age of 40 and the life expectancy of a woman in the United States is about 84 years old, then by all accounts, he would be right saying I'm having a midlife crisis. Ironically, when I had my horoscope chart read after getting let go, the astrologer Mary said something about me going through a bit of a mid-life crisis right now because of my career.
2. Being Scattered - Maybe I am a little. I think I can be a little scattered when it comes to my thoughts and conversation. Although, I think that's because of my A.D.D. So I could be a lot worse...TRUST ME! My last boyfriend I felt was really scattered. When we started dating he didn't want to get married or have kids, then a few months later he did. Then he wanted to buy a house. Wait, no he wanted to rent. No...now he was going to move out of town. Oh hold up...he's staying and now he's buying a house again. Geez, Louise...then he bought the house, furnished it, and then thought of renting it out to save money. Did I mentions he cheanged his diet about 3-4 times while we dated? That my friends...is scattered! Considering I've had the same career for the past 20 years, the same job for the past 11 years, I've lived in the same house and driven the same car for 8 years, I think my level of scatteredness is a level 3 out of 10 with 10 being you're getting whiplash from the person being all over the place.
If anything, I'd say I'm more spontaneous and go with the flow. Maybe those are things that he's not used to in a girl. I can't be for certain, but I'd venture to say that I'm probably, one of the most adventurous, spontaneous, fun, and easygoing girls he's been with. In fact, from what I know, I'd put money on it.
3. Searching For Things That Make Me Happy - This one I don't totally disagree with, but I also think that he has a different perspective on this than I do. What does every self-help book or life coach tell you to do? They tell you to find out what makes you happy and do it. Whether that's a job or a hobby, find the things that give you pleasure, joy, and fulfillment so you can live a happy life. Isn't that what we're all trying to do right now? Here we are, we're all in this fucked up time in the world, and we're all just trying to figure out how to let go of the worry and stress and be happy.
I think the reason I have an issue with its being one of his points is that his perspective is different than mine because of where he's been in his life and what he does for a living. Obviously, I've been in radio all of my adult life. So when I'd go out and meet new people or go on dates, one of the questions is "What are your hobbies or what do you like to do for fun?" For a long time, I never really had much of an answer for that question which always made me feel like I was missing something. Sure, I love to travel and that can be considered a hobby, but that's not something I can do all of the time. Also, for a lot of people in radio, this is our hobby. People in radio or TV are getting to do their hobby everyday for work, so outside of that sometimes we don't have a ton of interests.
So then take the guy I dated for example, he has a great career where he does well for himself. He's very smart and went to school for years to get where he is in life. Now, if you were to talk to him about his career and ask him why he chose it, he'd tell you that he chose that line of work because he knew it would make good money. He didn't choose it because he was passionate about it. He didn't choose it because it sounded fun. He chose it because it was steady, it was good money, and it was a career path with plenty of options. So for him, he must have other things outside of work that make him happy otherwise he'd get bored or lost. I get that. And he does. He likes to work out, he likes to watch certain sports and even likes practice certain sports. He likes to travel. Now, he's even working in a side business that can be seen as a hobby or passion project. He has found those things because he knew he kind of had to.
4. Identity Crisis - This one os a little tricky for me because like I've said before when it comes to my career, radio was something that I've wanted to do since I was a little kid. My obsession became my profession. Besides a few jobs I had in high school and college, radio and TV has been all I've ever done. So when I lost my job, of course I'm going to question who I am. For the last 20 years I was Erin Austin the radio girl, Now I'm Erin Austin the former radio girl, or just Erin Austin. And who is that girl now? I'm trying to figure that out. Will she again be Erin Austin the radio girl, the TV girl, the podcast girl, the blogger, girl, or does she become something outside of those things and find a place in marketing or PR? I don't know.
After I got off the phone with him (the guy that broke things off with me) I feel like he should have a nickname for the sake of this blog. I called my friend Corey who also lost this job in radio recently. I asked him, "Am I having a mid-life crisis? Is it bad that I don't have a plan together right now and don't know what my next step is? He of course asked me whay I was asking this and I told him the story. He said, "we're all going through that right now. There are hundreds if not thousounds of people in our industry that are trying to figure it out and decide what their next step is. It's not even just people in our industry. There are millions of people in the country that have lost their jobs and don't know what they're going to do. So don't beat yourself up. We're in a pandemic and this is probably one of the worst times in history to be looking for work. I feel like people that aren't in radio don't really understand what it's like it's like when we lose a job. They just get another one sometimes it's down the street, where we have very few jobs to chose from and more than likely we have to move." I think he's right. This career is one that's different than most other professions. Professional sports is similar. TV is similar. Which has always been so interesting to me how all those women TV anchors and reporters seem to have no problem finding a guy that will move with them where ever, yet I've never had a guy once actually consider moving with me if I got a job somewhere else. I digress...
So what are my final thoughts. Am I having a mid-life crisis? I guess it sort of is one. It's definitely a time of rebuilding.
Do I have a plan in place? No.
Do I know what I'll do next? No.
Do I have it all figured out? No, and that's OK. It's OK that I don't have it all figured out right now, and I shouldn't be so hard on myself that I don't, because none of us really do. Nobody has it all figured out.
What I do know is that I'll land on my feet. I always have and always I will. I'll take of myself just like I always have. I'll get through this and if you want to be a art of my journey and support me in my time of need I more than welcome it.
You never know what the future may hold.