A nice, foamy Snakebite (cider and lager) always helps me with my BGUDs.
My fabulous Nia teacher, Jasjit, wrote about a great idea in her latest newsletter:
to start at the “End.” Enter a state where whatever you’re struggling with is already sorted, handled, completed in the most contented way you could imagine. Sit with this. Sense your body, feel your feelings, imagine the situation, and notice where you are. Breathe it in. And then return to the present moment and choose what to do now, if anything, knowing full well that you’ve already seen the End, it’s good, and everything is leading you there.
Okay, yes, to my often-cynical self this sounds s bit New Age-y cheesy, but seriously, it’s really helped through all this. (That and the aforementioned Snakebites. Do I drink too much? Possibly.)
There’s been some turmoil in my life lately, more specifically in my what-the-heck-am-I-going-to-do-after-maternity-leave life. My wonderful, blissful year of mat leave ends next month, and I had been trying to decide what to do. Ever since I knew I wanted to have kids, I knew that I didn’t want to work full time when they were still very young. Also, working 5 or even 4 days a week, with daycare costs taken into consideration, just doesn’t make much financial sense. It would either be that we were broke with me going back to work (not to mention stressed out and going against our parenting philosophy with putting Keats in daycare a bulk of the time), or ever broker with me trying to freelance and keep Keaton at home with me.
But there’s the small problem of our debt load – my husband and I have such a huge debt to pay off on a tight payment schedule (not to mention the costs of living in the world’s most expensive city!) that if I don’t make a certain chunk of money every month, we’re basically screwed. This left us in a bit of a pickle, to say the least.
So, I wrote up a proposal to my boss at my library job (which I was on mat leave from) to work part-time hours, but for various reasons that I won’t get into, she didn’t go for it nearly the way I’d hoped. To be honest, I really didn’t want to go back to that job anyway, but I thought I’d try the easiest thing first. When my boss didn’t go for my proposal (I won’t even get into all the details around that), my heart sank. I had it all figured out, but then she didn’t go for it. I cried as soon as I left the meeting room, and cried all the way home. On the way home I got a bubble tea, and then I talked with my sister and started to feel better.
Because my library job wasn’t my only option. Something about staying home with a baby for nearly a year had shaken my confidence in the professional realm a little (I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised), but then I started to snap out of it. I thought, “okay, I’ve freelanced before, I have an MA, I’ve got a pretty good resume by this point. I can freelance and/or get another job.” This thought was inspiring, as I’ve been wanting to seriously get back into my freelance writing/marketing business, but hanging over our heads the entire time was the whole money thing. And then, when the stress was really, really setting in, my husband spotted a part-time faculty job posting at a local university. How perfectly serendipitous that it didn’t start until September (so I could spend the summer at home with Keats), and that I had a connection in that university department, so I could find out the inside scoop.
One interview and a 10-minute lecture/demo later, and I found out a week later that I had the job! I’ll be teaching as part of an arts and entertainment management program. I resigned from my library job (I’ll miss the people there, but not really the job itself), and now I’m thrust into something totally new – switching from marketing and communications work to university teaching. Wow. It’s weird to think that for the first time in years, I won’t have to worry about whether the correct logo is on something, or if the latest newspaper ad got in before the deadline. Instead I’ll be teaching 26 first-years about computer applications for arts workplaces. I don’t think that I’ve totally grasped that idea yet. Maybe I’ll worry about that later, after some more summer fun.
So here I am at the “End” – the decision has been made, things have been put in motion, and what I was struggling with is sorted, handled, completed in the most contented way I can imagine. I stil can’t believe how serendipitously well it’s all worked out. After what seems like way too long (a couple months, maybe) of attempting to make Big, Grown-Up Decisions (BGUDs, as Joshua and I call them), they’ve now been made. And I feel so. Much. Better. There will be stress involved with my new direction, of course – money stress, learning curve, taking on a whole different job, etc. etc., but so much better than the stress dropping Keaton off at daycare 4 or 5 days a week and then bitterly dragging myself into work, knowing that the whole time I was going against my principles. Nope, that just wasn’t an option at all.
Hmmm, this is some pretty heavy Friday reading I’ve given you isn’t it? Well anyway, have a happy weekend!
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