I got some disappointing news today about a job I was hoping, very much hoping, to land. Truthfully, my news kind of spoiled the lunch I was having with a friend at the Oak Crest Tavern, a pine panelled rec-room of a bar that easily seats at least 30 people, and serves hamburgers made from beef ground at Knoche’s butcher shop across the street. I cried a little bit, and we both shook our heads. No matter how innocuously phrased the rejection, it doesn’t change the result: the ones I want don’t want me. And I am going to have to move on.
“You should go and make some pretty pictures,” my friend told me. I knew she was right, but I also knew my heart wasn’t in it. Still, I did what my friend suggested, if only to be able to point out, at some future date, that on rare occasion, I do take her advice.
When I got home, I plodded earnestly around the ornamental pear tree in my parking lot for a while. It isn’t my favorite subject – too tall, with branches that point straight up, holding its flowers far above my head, On the other hand, my mopey mood lowered my expectations, so I wasn’t disappointed, either. After 10 minutes or so, I tore off a few twigs with pom-poms of white blossoms, and went upstairs.
I said my heart wasn’t in it, but as I shoved the stolen clumps of pear blossoms into a spice jar full of water – an indifferent prop if ever there was one – it dawned on me. My heart actually IS in it – inescapably so. The connection between my eyes and what I feel is irrepressible. My heart wants so much to be seen, to feel recognized, to be included, trusted, and most precious of all, challenged to grow. When I take a picture, some part of my true self is there, whether I want it to be or not. When I ask for a chance to give my time and my skill to work that needs doing, my heart is there, whether I want it to be or not.
Now that I know how the storyline for this job prospect ends, I will have to set loose the hopes that have hung themselves on its bones, and see where they land. I suppose that’s it exactly. I will just have to see what happens.