When I moved overseas, my capacity shrank. See, the Africa slice of my pie was simply…ginormous.
Everything took about three extra steps. Need to brush your teeth? You might not want to use water from the tap. You’ll need to fill your water filter or boil it; if your water’s off for the day, you’ll need to haul it in from outside.
I remember specifically the day my mom flew home after my first child was born. Gone were all the nurses in the hospital; gone was the woman who had successfully raised four functioning young adults. Being alone with a blinking person who still has their umbilical cord attached can make a parent kind of, you know.
When I was 23, an editor position opened up at the publishing house where I was working. In the vein of having integrity, I approached my boss with my interest in the position.
“You don’t have the chops for that job,” he told me point-blank.
His blithe directness, to be frank, chapped my hide. But looking back now, there’s no doubt in my mind he was right. I’m not sure if I have the chops for that particular job now. Yet it did make me take a look at the job itself and gradually appreciate just how off my self-assessment was–as well as my understanding of the job itself. And honestly, I buckled down to eventually be the kind of person who could qualify for a job like that.