On Monday, an old high school friend invited me to a Thanksgiving dinner. It was a late invite and I had already started cocooning* but alas I got myself out of bed and put on my fine linens. Now for those of you that don’t do a lot of dinner parties, let me break it down for you. There are two types of dinner parties…
1) The Friends Dinner Party – This is where everyone knows everyone and conversations tend have a slight gossipy feel to it. People are usually catching up on the happenings in each other’s lives… and the lives of the people who aren’t in attendance.
2) The Meet & Greet Dinner Party – This dinner party is usually hosted by one lynch pin individual, and they bring together a select group of people. There are always a few mutual acquaintances but for the most part people are making small talk because they don’t really know each other. Although, what usually ends up happening is the conversations settle on one of four topics: Work, Politics, Sports, or Vacation.
So at Mondays dinner party the lynch pin individual was a doctor. He had invited someone of his high school friends that he knew couldn’t make it home for the holidays (Me), some friends from med school, and some of his colleagues. What ended up happening were some very interesting conversations around the healthcare industry and the art of maximizing your billing (as a doctor).
Towards the end of the night as I sat there sipping on scotch (like I knew what I was doing), I realized I don’t have a career… I might not even have career aspirations at this point. These people were professionals, their life’s work up to this point had been achieved. Obviously some of the sentiment conveyed throughout the conversations weren’t 100% positive but you could feel a general sense of accomplishment. You felt that what they were doing wasn’t exciting all the time but they truly did enjoy it.
As I slipped deeper into my scotch induced stupor I wondered if I’d ever even have a career, up to this point in my life I’d just had jobs. A basic means to an end so I could do the real things in my life I enjoyed. Then I wondered… how does one even go about getting a career?? Stats show that we aren’t going to be like our parents generation, and we’re likely to work at multiple different places over the course of our adult life. So what really was the point?? Maybe a job is all I really needed? Then I remembered the sense of accomplishment the doctors had when talking about their work… and I can honestly say I’ve never had that… I want that.
*Cocooning – The art of wrapping yourself in multiple layers of blankets and calling it a night at an unusually early hour. (or you can use the Wikipedia definition… but mine is better)