“I believe that the human spirit is indomitable. If you endeavor to achieve, it will happen given enough resolve. It may not be immediate, and often your greater dreams is something you will not achieve within your own lifetime. The effort you put forth to anything transcends yourself, for there is no futility even in death.”
It’s actually been quite difficult to complete my more serious plans for my blog considering I either am working far too much or my days off are filled with me being so sick I can’t accomplish anything. That being said, it’s 1 am and here comes a thought…
I can’t say there’s anything glamorous about my life. I can’t say if anyone actually reads my musings and enjoy them. I can’t even say this blog gets much traffic other than the few loyal that haunt me like friendly little ghosts in the dashboard stats. But, I can say that no matter what, I am trying…
My world has always been filled with misfortune in which being socially acceptable, kind, and approachable and being quite literally someone who gives zero fucks are constantly at war with each other.
Yet one thing that does not change is my work ethic.
People who are outside looking in, always believe my aversion to jobs — 9-to-5s, retail, customer service, food service, sanitation, even becoming apart of the american dream in a white collar position — is nothing more than a simple laziness and that often I am merely hiding behind my illness. That my Schizoaffective Disorder is a convenience so that I don’t have to function in society. Its even been labeled a burden for others around me.
However, it is not a burden that defines me, nor is it a simple convenience. It is simply a facet of me and it has nothing to do with my work ethic. Everyday that I have energy and breath I wake and put pen to paper, fingertip to keyboard, and mouse clicks to research links. I digitally socialize, I scroll through Facebook and Twitter, but I am also always working. My mind is a constant factory of ideas and production, arranging core thoughts, edits, information, and lore at such speeds that it has to compete with the severe anxiety and obsessive thoughts that act as spontaneously shifting tectonic plates beneath the surface of a fragmented mind.
But I still work.
Yes. I do the work.
I have playbooks. Notebooks devoted singularly to ideas that have managed to be fully born into plots and characters. These are whole worlds packed around in the depths of my purse as I clock in and out at my jobs with crumbs sliding into the spine at lunch time and a tear stain here and there. Each page is spilled ink of various colors and page-markers of different kinds. Washi Tape has recently become a thing because I’m a papercraft whore and I’m proud of it. The cover is littered with motivational stickers so that when I look at this world it inspires me before I open it and after I close it.
I have books. Both Fiction and NonFiction in an attempt to stimulate my mind, improve my technique and bring the higher plane of imagination down to the more mundane plane of words in hopes of transporting you to those same planes. I read other authors to view their worlds as well, to let them challenge my perspective of what is real and what isn’t. But I also love to take in reality through science and history and expand what my worlds could be or even just expand my mind.
I have music. Almost 25 Gigs of music collected over the years, 30 different playlists, and a growing number of YouTube collections as well as saved Spotify and Google Play radio. I even still have CD collections. All for the sake of enhancing that which I visualize in my head so that I can see clearly the time, place, and emotions of these worlds I create as well as translate just who my characters are onto paper.
And these things combined are my tools for the trade and I used them to work.
I even do research on obscure topics and write about them in Blogging Playbook (yes I have a playbook for blogging) to be transcribed into future posts. Anything I see, anything I hear, sometimes even smell can turn into an interest or an idea that I want to share with the world.
That’s what I do. That’s what I want.
However, one must eat and medicate. So the day job exists to support my necessities… but I can’t lie and say it is desirable. Sometimes it’s downright infeasible.
There are days when I wake up with body and mind out of sync and I need to stay home, but, it’s really hard to be granted that necessity. How do you explain to your boss that you’re mentally exhausted, that you’re having one of your “bad” days, or that you are literally unable to take the step out of your house without being paralyzed by an inexplicable fear. Understanding of disability has severe limits you know…
This, though, has not deterred me. I work harder and harder trying to complete these projects so that I can share my art, my worlds with this world. Even when I’m standing at the register, feeling nonsensically trapped by the counter in front of me and the doors to the bookstore seem miles away, I am still working toward that goal where no one can see, where no one can say good job.
“You don’t seem to want anything from life…”
“You’re just lazy…”
“You’re making excuses…”
Words I’ve heard countless times from the outside looking in.
Simply because my job is not my aspiration does not mean I aimless. Just because my dreams haven’t happened yet, doesn’t mean I need to settle for what I gratefully have. I’m still hungry and as long as I’m still hungry, I will keep going.
I love my job. Its the best place I’ve ever worked, but it is and always will be my means to my end. It is what it is. While I give my best to that job within my limitations, the greater part of my mind is working hard and working fast while fighting the urge to break down and scream at the lady who is disappointed that her coupon doesn’t work. While she is fuming, I’m writing dialogue in my head as one of my characters faces the crux of their story. While I’m showing a customer to a certain genre or locating an obscure title, I am listing the details of a cosmological discovery so that I can write about it later. When I’m taking a 15 minute break I am note-taking either on my phone or in my notebook and discussing with myself the meaning of diversity in writing vs what everyone wants it to mean.
I never stop thinking… so I never stop working.
Because the job is not my life and I cannot — will not settle for it becoming so. How could I when jobs like that are, more often than not, transitory or worse shackle on the ambition of one who is ill-suited to that career path. My work is my life and I will continue to work until fingers are numb and my heart gives out. It’s a slow process, slower even because sometimes my body doesn’t want to move. But, I will continue. Even if I can’t see the people I love more than once or twice a year. Even if I lose contact because the wants of my social groups isn’t a priority for my attentions anymore. Even if I can’t connect anymore because my determination can’t be held back by those around me.
And when I’m dead, I’ll hope that my work transcends my life. That it evolves past me…
I will do the work.
I will always do the work.
So in the words of Monty Oum — my favorite workaholic:
“Can you match my resolve?”
See you at the finish line…
-Harli V. Park-
Thank you for reading. I also now have a Facebook author page for ease of updates in case you can’t keep up with this particular site like you’d like. So you can follow me in these places:
I am always available at all these and they are updated regularly. So by all means lurk away. Thank you for your support!