Hi everyone. I started this blog because I have always loved writing and for quite afew years now, have felt that I had a book waiting to burst out of me. But, as I believe is common with us writers, life kept happening and try as I might, it just hasn’t happened yet.
Recently, I have had quite a curveball thrown at me. Last December, I was fortunate enough to score a part-time job .. my first actual ‘proper’, paid job in 13 years, at which time I had gone on maternity leave and not returned to work.
As you can imagine, returning to work after being a stay at home mum all those years took quite abit of adjustment. The hours were perfect, 10am – 2.00pm so it meant I could drop my kids at school, duck into Woolies if I needed to, drive to work (20 mins), finish at 2.00pm and off I would go on the school run again.
What it meat though, was that my alarm went off at 6.00am, I would get up at 6.15am, shower and dress up for work, have my breakfast, feed my four kids, make four lunches, drive to two schools, sometimes doing three or four trips if it was one of the three mornings a week one of my daughters had to be there early for choir, dancing etc. Some mornings I had no choice but to do this as my two youngest kids just could not get ready that early!
We would all arrive home from school around 3.45pm and I would immediately start washing dishes, hanging washing, making dinner etc. After that, there was help with homework for my two youngest and finally getting to my bedroom aroud 8.30-9.00pm every night, having about an hour to read and go through school paperwork, bills etc before getting to sleep so that I could do it all over again the next day.
My new job wasn’t my dream job, that’s for sure but it was ok and in my favourite industry (health and fitness), working in a small office with nice people.
I was employed casually which meant that if I didn’t work, I didn’t get paid. Having bills to pay and debts to pay off, I worked my butt off for months on end, only taking afew days off during one lot of the school holidays. I felt that if I put my heart and soul into it, my efforts would be recognised and I would surely be made permanent.
I told my kids this when they expressed their disappointment at not being able to attend their performances in assembly and I told my Mum this when she told me she missed me because it had been ages since she saw me. I missed my friends and my family as there was no time for me to call anyone and all I was capable of thinking about and planning was everything I had to do and remember in each day.
Reading was a non-occurrence throughout those months, except for the weekend paper and I missed my books. I hung the washing on the clotheshorse in the garage every night so I missed the sunshine and my garden. I could see through the window that my lavender was now in full bloom and I dreamt of picking it.
For the first time in over 20 years, (aside from two years of sickness), I couldn’t make it to my beloved gym, except for once a week. I could feel my thighs rubbing together alittle and turning all wobbly and my fitness was now zilch.
All of this sounds very negative but, I truly believe that there is a upside to everything and it is up to us to find it and focus on it and that’s what I did.
Working with very intelligent, well read and well accomplished people, I was constantly surrounded with knowledge, and although I wear hearing aids as I have 55-60% hearing loss in the middle range, in both ears, it is amazing what I can hear, especially when I am interested. Having always had a thirst for learning, my ears were opening wide!
So I listened and I learned and I worked and I taught my kids adaptability and resilience and perseverance I believe.
My boss could see my abilities after awhile and my dedication, and I guess my hunger for knowledge. He allowed me to use my initiative and eventually asked for my opinion on the odd occasion which I enjoyed. It felt great to finally be using my brain in a way that stimulated me.
I employed some strategies that I had come up with and they started to work. It was exciting and I couldn’t wait to see where it would all lead.
And then it came, the moment I least expected…. I lost my job and had four weeks’ notice.
My first reaction was to cry. How would I feed my kids? Last year, there was a time where I couldn’t pay the bills and was incredibly grateful to receive a massive hamper full of food and presents for my kids from a charity.
For half a day I felt self pity, and then I told myself it wasn’t helpful. I had to find a way to see the opportunity in this experience and believe it was taking me exactly where I needed to go and that I was, infact already right where I was supposed to be at that moment.
This is just the start of my story. At 41, with a life full of unwritten, unopened chapters inside of me, there is much to tell and much to teach and even just to express. My wish is to inspire you, not necessarily to be a better person, although that certainly may be the case, but to be you, the you that you really are.
Thank you for listening and I look forward to writing so much more:)