Forced slow down

I know that a lot of people have been in this position before, and I have at other times - to a certain degree.

What started as "just a cold" turned into a virus infection of my heart - pericarditis. This is something I had never heard of but it let me find out about it very painfully. Two trips to the emergency room, four days of excruciating pain and debilitating slowness, not to mention the heavy duty drugs, have totally knocked the stuffing out of me. I can't do ANYTHING!

For someone as independent as I am, having to rely on others is the hardest thing. And expecting Chris to do much is an illusion, though he is doing his best. I have had to look beyond what I believe is normal (clean house, clean clothes etc) and accept things as is.

And for me, someone who never sits still to reflect on anything, now I am forced to look at my life. And there is a lot I don't like about it. And I know that when I actually voice what I want (which is not totally clear yet but I have a damn good idea) the shit might hit the fan around the house. I do know that stress affects me way more than I thought. When I got into an altercation with a mortgage bank, I could actually feel the muscles around my heart constricting. So I need to get out of positions that can cause that much stress.

There's the good motivational stress - getting stories in on deadline, meeting people for interviews, being on time to catch flight - and then there is the "bad" stress. For me that is being an occupation that I don't like and where I don't want to be, like in real estate.

The problem with real estate is that the big commission checks are very seductive and hook you in. I know I probably won't make ( I never have!) as much money in the photojournalism field. But it's the place where I am happiest. I'm not happy doing real estate. It's a chore. I don't find it exciting. I said I would NEVER do it again. But here I am, almost locked in but now, with this time on my hands for contemplation and exploration, I see that it doesn't necessarily have to be so.

I need to follow my bliss - I need to do what makes me happy. Yes, big paychecks are nice but honestly, I get more of a zing out of a small check from a magazine and seeing my work in print, than getting a big commission check. There are some who just don't get it - as money is the uppermost thought in their minds, not the satisfaction and joy that comes from a job well done - and printed.

How do you explain that living with minimal material things is preferable to having lots of "stuff," the "I gotta get me," mentality.

Girls get it, boys don't.