I like your honesty. There must be millions of creatively-inclined people who would relate to your comment: "But I persist with this "walking dead" corporate zombie life just so I can do fun stuff a few hours a week". Hit the spot for me.I've had similar thoughts.
A famous athlete once told me that he decided to do sports because he knew no matter what he chose to do in life, it would be difficult. So he figured he might as well chase his dream. And he went through some terrible trials, including getting paralyzed doing the sport he loves. He went on to set the world record in the Ironman triathlon (in the disabled class).
I think about this a lot. My "secure" day job is probably just as insecure and perilous and uncertain as a music career would have been. And I am broke anyhow, since I am forced to live in a high cost of living area.
So if I am going to be exhausted, broke, and unsure about my financial future I might as well do what I love. But I persist with this "walking dead" corporate zombie life just so I can do fun stuff a few hours a week.
Joseph Campbell said "follow your bliss"-- but I always got so much family pressure to go out and be a productive corporate worker. I will be 45 this year and not feeling very fulfilled at all.
My parents never, ever gave me the option of living at home and pursuing music. That was about equivalent to saying I wanted to sit around and drink beer (to them).
In the end I finally managed to carve a little niche for myself where I am effectively excused from playing most of the corporate games, even within a corporate environment. I am accepted as a (loveable haha) eccentric who does work that requires an unusual skillset that others are either unwilling or unable to take on for the money.
That dynamic - accepting lower rewards for being cut more slack - has helped me stay sane after decades of office work HOOHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HEHEHE HEHE *cough*
Just because office work and music are both insecure does not mean the risks are the same. Office work is 100x easier to get, and pays MUCH better for lower skillsets. There are degrees of poverty and exhaustion ...
I do think you get over the grind after a while. I commuted and worked in offices for almost 36 years and I'm over it. I prefer caring for my old man, which is what I'm doing now. I'm doing about 1 or 2 days a month in the office and another couple at home at the moment. Occasionally have to clean up after an incontinent incident or get him off the hospital.
Not perfect but I'm off the treadmill, out of the grinder, and I am very lucky.
My advice is to play drums when you can, within the bounds of your life ... and stay open to new opportunities (in drumming or any other area of life).