02 August 2010

A Fork in the Road

I am making my way through a viewing of the entire TV series "Six Feet Under" on DVD. Someone dies at the beginning of each episode, followed by a screen stating the name and bookend dates of the deceased's existence.

The central characters of the series own a funeral parlor and most episodes launch from their planning consultation with the survivors. We learn a little about the life of the deceased during the consultation scene and sometimes a bit more during the memorial service.

The show has sparked some consideration of my own death, specifically "What will they say about me at my memorial service?" In every version of my imagined memorial service, something is said about "Alex' search for sustaining and meaningful work." It's been the centerpiece of my adult life and close friends have gotten an earful over the years about my successes and failures and longing.

Through my work in the Landmark Forum I gained a deeper appreciation of some critical aspects of my work saga. It's always been something of a mystery to me how a powerful resume and an impressive presentation in interviews have been insufficient to open the right career doors. Beginning in high school and continuing to the present day, I have looked like a "winner" to most people -- but my real-life story has been a losing one.

Twelve hours later...

There are no guarantees. I could die in my sleep tonight.

I want Them to say "She struggled for a long time but she finally won."

Tomorrow my work begins.

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