Why I Want To Be A Quitter

randomlychad  —  July 16, 2011 — 9 Comments

It’s late at night. I should be sleeping, but my mind won’t let this go. I wonder is this all there is? My heart races. Though fatigued, sleep refuses to come. I’ve got to get this off my chest. I’m not getting any younger.

At forty-two, they tell me I’m “middle-aged,” but in my mind this is mere euphemism for: you don’t have much time. There are less years ahead than have gone by.

Life is passing me by.

I have been with the same company for nineteen years, eleven of those in the same position (tech support). At the time it seemed the sensible thing: steady job, good benefits. Insofar as it goes, this has been true: my family and I have been well-provided for, and I’m thankful to God for the job I have. I am blessed.


There is little life in it, and nowhere to go. As someone who enjoys new challenges, there are precious few, and much of the job has been reduced to rote. Without a college degree, my growth potential is almost nil.

I want to be a quitter, but don’t know how.

I’ve always dreamt of writing, and have indeed achieved some measure of success as a blogger within the last year, but truth be told: I lost–no, I gave–a quarter century to fear. I spent so long believing the lie that I didn’t have what it takes that it’s hard to break free of the fear.

And fear is a demon that threatens to shipwreck my dreams. And I’m not the only one: my wife is afraid, too. So afraid that, in a moment of pique, she lashed out the other night, told me I was too old, that I didn’t have what it takes. (A practical woman, I now believe she was telling me that dreams don’t pay the bills).

For a moment, I was a young man again, being scolded by my stepdad: “This [my writing] is no good. You don’t have it. Find something else.”

I believed that for so long, but in the last year I feel like I’ve got my life back. I feel alive in a way I never have before. When I write, time doesn’t seem to pass. I feel like this is what I was made for.

But at forty-two, I’m not sure that time is at all on my side. I want to learn to like a job I don’t love, but don’t know how. I want to leverage it, use it to support my dream, but still hustle, and not give it short shrift.

And when the time is right, I want to be a quitter, but I don’t have a plan. I just know I wasn’t made for this (the day job), and it’s sucking the life out of me. I can’t do this for the rest of my life. I want to do something that matters.

I want my life to matter.

It is for this reason, and those outlined above, that I want to be a quitter.

How about you? Do you want to be a quitter, too?

*A note on this post: it began its life as a comment on Matt Chambers’s blog. Over there, he’s giving away a ticket to Jon Acuff’s Quitter Conference. I desperately want to win.




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Christ-follower, husband, dad, blogger, reader, writer, movie buff, introvert, desert-dweller, omnivore, gym rat. May, or may not, have a burgeoning collection of Darth Vader t-shirts. Can usually be found drinking protein shakes, playing with daughter, working out with his son, or hanging out with his wife. Makes a living playing with computers.Subscribe to RandomlyChad by Email

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