Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Indecisive Me

As many of you know, I consider my life to have been a perfect example of taking nearly every fork in the road imaginable. In my nearly 40 years I’ve had jobs as diverse as newspaper carrier, retail store clerk, substitute teacher, business mentor, website business owner, studio musician, printing professional and consultant, U.S. Marine, and private music teacher. As the rest of you may know, I’ve been back to school for last year studying biology and chemistry with the idea of applying to chiropractic school. I just can’t seem to make up my mind when it comes to “what I want to do when I grow up.”

It’s gotten worse.

With my recent set-backs in chemistry, and my new music studio, I’ve started seriously thinking about music education full time, instead of Chiropractic. As I look at the path ahead in both directions, I’ll be missing out on a huge chunk of my children’s lives if I pursue the chiropractic side. My oldest son will be 19 and ready to move out by the time I start practice, for heaven’s sake! With all the time I’m devoting to school and work I already feel like I’m losing my children, or at least their childhood. And if I continue on this path, it’s only going to get worse. It’s a cost I thought could deal with by making sure I spent more time with them on the weekends, but it’s not working. The cost is becoming too high.

So anyway, I’m in the middle of my continual “life path re-think” again. A Masters degree in education doesn’t look too bad, and should only take me two or three more years, not six or seven. I’ve tried looking at various scenarios, including trying for an endorsement in science (science teachers are in demand), but in the end I think I’d just be fooling myself. In many ways, I may have been already.

When it comes down to it, I’m a musician. I like all aspects of music: performing, composing, arranging, producing, and teaching. The farther I get away from that, as much as I enjoy medicine and helping people, the farther it seems I’m getting away from myself.

It’s just that when I think about trying to build a career in music, the “security hungry” side of myself starts screaming.  I fear that I’ll never make any real money with it, and may end up with a crappy retirement as well. Then how will be children feel?

I hate balancing myself against my children’s future needs. When I do, nobody seems to win.

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