It's the Winter Solstice. At 12:47pm, the sun was at its lowest angle to the earth and the daylight was the shortest of the year.
It seems appropriate that financially, I am at about the lowest point in my career. Today, my fiancee and I debated about buying birdseed for the local birds, since the ground is covered with snow. I never thought I'd see the day that buying a little birdseed would be an extravagance.
There is no room for luxuries in my current life. Anything we purchase must have a purpose.
In the last year, I have lost my home to a short sale, I have filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, and even still, I'm trying to figure out what other bills I can jettison. It seems like almost every day, I am redefining what is essential. This month, my business has generated the least about of billable hours in its 23-year history.
I'm hoping this is the bottom of the ebb. I'm hoping this is simply the lull of a mega-recession coupled with the usual holiday lull.
I'm not sure what to do next. Do I scramble for a menial job? Do I bone up on web development skills I need to catch up on? What is the best next move? Will it be enough?
And those are all the practical, physical considerations. Those seem like the tip of the iceberg compared to the emotional considerations: Am I enough? At age 51, do I still have value? Do I still have something I can contribute to society that will allow me not just to subsist, but to thrive?
I don't even think I mean "thrive" in the same terms I might have thought about the word even 2 years ago. I don't need to be rich. I don't even need to buy new clothes once a year, though that would be nice. I want to be comfortable, I don't want to have to worry about money, and I want to feel acknowledged and valuable. And I want to feel connected to friends and family.
I'm struggling to figure out how to achieve these things and have emotional peace. These things feel far away at the moment.
Maybe today, I need to accept this is where I am, and hold out hope on this darkest day, as many people have done for countless centuries, that the sun will return, that warm days will come again, that abundance will return, that I will find my way back to peace, contentment and happiness.