A couple of days ago, I started emailing a friend of mine with whom I had lost touch. Over the course of these emails, I poured out all the issues and frustrations that have been building in my head recently. Earlier today, he logs in to his instant messenger account and we start chatting away. After spending a few minutes talking about the emails, he tells me that I'm in a much better position than my initial emails let on. This stopped me in my tracks. And I looked back at the last six years of my life.
In Jan 2004, I was forced to move back in with my mother due to not being able to find a job to keep me in the Newark/NYC area. The rearguard action I was fighting after the 2001 "Dot-Bomb" disaster was finally declared a failure. Four months later, I was working at Best Buy barely eking out an existence. Making just enough money to pay for the taxi cabs that enabled me to get to and from work. I was angry, depressed, frustrated, and hopeless. Living with my mother didn't help my mental situation either. But remembering where I was then and looking at where I am now, I can safely say that I have made considerable progress.
I have a job in my chosen industry making at least double what Best Buy was paying me at the time. I am living in my own apartment, and sustaining myself.(I'm even cooking my own food!) I have my own car. More importantly, I've gotten a better perspective on my life. I'm still depressed & frustrated, but I am no longer angry or hopeless. I have come to terms with the errors of my past, and have come to recognize the patterns of behavior that lead to me repeating those errors. I am no longer on a pattern of self destruction. More importantly, I have learned what I want and what makes me happy.
My improvements were such that I was even able to maintain a short term, somewhat romantic relationship with a girl. While it was short lived, the fact that it happened at all is a major step forward! Now, I can't say my life is all sweetness and light, or that I've transformed into an upbeat, happy-go-lucky guy. But, for the first time in over a decade, I can look back on my life and see that I'm better now than I was then. The philosopher George Santayana stated, "Those who can not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." It looks like my memory is getting better. I'm still not happy by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm getting there. My life, such as it is, remains simply a