Date: March 13, 2023 06:38PM
Back in the 1980s I was putting my arts training to good use, working in the interior decorating and design industry in NYC. I worked with all of the top designers of the era, or at times, their assistants. I sold them various items, and designed custom items for them. It was fun, and artistically satisfying.
However...I came to realize that it would be difficult to make it to the highest levels in the industry without being rich, or at least well-to-do, myself. Yes, some people do it, but it takes a tremendous amount of drive that I just didn't have.
Plus...there were things that were starting to bother me, such as the more-or-less standing cost of $10K for *one* set of living room or bedroom curtains. Or the tantrums thrown by the designers' clients over things like not being able to make a Christmas delivery for a custom piece that they ordered at the last minute. First world problems, am I right?
I started to think...if I'm going to deal with people throwing tantrums, I want those people to be six years old or younger. I felt a deep calling to go into one of the helping professions, to make a difference. So I did.
God, I was *so* naive. I took my newly acquired skills and training, and became an urban teacher. I had no clue. It was so, so difficult. But I persevered. I have taught for several decades now. At present, I work with immigrant children. The stories that they and their families tell me would tear your heart out. So may brave, aspiring people.
So I feel like I've done my bit. In my small way, I've made the world a better place. That's important to me. I also highly value helping my family, and helping animals. I learned a very long time ago that you have to do things for your own reasons, because you may not get any gratitude in return. So I do these things for my own reasons, because it fulfils me as a human being.
My question now, is, how do I find meaning in retirement? I'm not sure. TBD.