It’s usually about this time every year that I get so melancholy that I break down, and visit my family’s psychiatrist. “I am very depressed,” I say to him, lip trembling, upon arrival at his office.
“Sorry ‘bout your luck,” he tells me. “Here’s a bill for $400.”
And then he sends me home.
This summer, however, I am happier than I have been since 2003, when I decided that I would rather kill myself than suffer through another resume building internship in an office building in Manhattan. So I spent my days out by my parent’s pool, reading Robert Jordan, and my nights waitressing at a local restaurant. By the end of the summer, I had made $15,000 in cash. I was free, and I was happy, and I was richer than I’d ever be again. “This is one way I can live that is unexpected,” I realized.
But the next summer, I graduated, and took a prestigious job. In the years that followed, I martyred myself in a string of offices. I filled my calendar with networking events, and dinners with useful people whom I secretly hated. I endured it for all of the fall and winter months. It was what I was supposed to do, and it made me feel successful.