My summer vacation has started and I'm already catching shit from my family and questioning my own self-worth because of it. Good times, huh?
The deal is that I teach during the academic school year and also translate on a freelance basis. Freelance basis means sometimes I have too much work coming in and I have to turn down offers and sometimes nothing's coming in and I could, theoretically, just kick back and relax and enjoy my free time.
Except I don't just kick back and enjoy the down time. I spend the down time wondering if I should go back to school for yet another degree in order to "change careers" or whether I really should, as my father urges every time he sees me, figure out how to contact Theo Epstein and try to get a gig an an interpreter for the Red Sox even though I couldn't give a shit about baseball and abhor the thought of commuting to Boston, never mind traveling for a job. And then there's my sister, who is now gainfully employed by dad after years of slackerdom, and her not-so-subtle contemptuous tone of "oh, that must be nice" when I tell her I'm currently not working on any translation at the moment and am done with school for the year. Well, excuse me for having skills that let me work freelance and also for having received my settlement check from the divorce, which along with the payment checks now coming in for the work I kicked ass on last month and the understanding and generosity of my wonderful boyfriend who values my contributions to our home and family even if they aren't all measured in dollars, lessens the immediate need to pull in a paycheck at the moment.
But, really, I know I should just say screw them and enjoy this opportunity to slow down and enjoy life. I figured out a long time ago that "high-powered" is not what I want to be. I love to teach. Time flies when I'm in the classroom and it doesn't feel so much like work. Translation isn't quite as much fun as teaching, but I like the freedom of working freelance. So what's the problem? I don't make a ton of money so that means I'm "wasting my potential"? What if my potential to be happy with the way my life is now means more to me than my potential to bust my ass to impress my family?