“No man is a failure who has friends.”

My wife likes to make extensive fun of me for reading Wil Wheaton’s blog, mainly because of his former stint at Star Trek TNG. However, the frequent posts full of brilliant writing keep me coming back. A good writer relays to you a story that not only keeps you entertained, but causes introspection and thought for days to come. Wil is a good writer. In a recent post, Wil says:

On the way back to the freeway, we passed this lumber yard on Ball Road that always has interesting sayings on its sign. Yesterday, the sign said, “No man is a failure who has friends.”

The truth is, for a couple of months, I’ve felt like a huge, colossal, stinking failure in a lot of things that I’m not willing to go into right now. But spending a weekend with my friends, and a surprise Monday with my wife reminded me of some advice I’d been given and forgotten: Don’t let your work become your life, because when work isn’t happening, then what do you have?

Work may be frustrating, but life? Life is good.

I’m thankful that I can use Wil’s words, as mine often fail me. This sums up very well exactly how I’ve been feeling recently. Things are looking up for me though. Job prospects are good, lots of cool stuff happening on the personal front, including the move back to Fort Smith. I’ve felt like I’ve been a slave to work for so long, and I’ve really had an epiphany recently that I think it takes a lot of people well into their 30s and 40s to understand, which like Wil says, I need to work to live and not live to work. This is exactly why I’m moving home. I was asked recently on IRC why I would consider moving back to Arkansas from an area that offers considerably more options for entertainment and culture than Arkansas. The problem is, I’ve lived here two years and done none of them. On top of that, I’ve not cared that I’ve not partaken of the fine dining experiences, theatre, art galleries, and live music scene. It’s too much effort. I’m a homebody. My idea of a good time involves doing exactly what Wil did over his weekend, which is hang out with some friends, cook some food, drink some wine, maybe toke a bit, and chill for the evening. My idea of fun for a Saturday? Put on sweatpants and watch bad movies with my wife. I can do that anywhere, and I might as well do it where I can be my own boss, be near my family and friends, and afford to own a nice home.

I’m so excited about the way things are going, I can barely contain myself. This is such a stark contrast from where I was even a month ago, that if I was asked what advice I could give for such a turnaround, it would have to be to take control of your life and your destiny and stop letting your job, your income and where you live control it. Simply taking control of my future and my employment has liberated me. Am I concerned that I won’t be able to provide for my family? Sure, but I have more faith in my ability to run a business than I have faith in my employer to not decide to up and lay me off any day.

More exciting news about the move to come in the next few weeks I hope. The report from this writer’s desk is: Life is Good.