We made it! Today we welcome in a brand-new year and a brand-new decade. The past ten years have been busy, as I got married, had two children, began my professional writing career, published several novels, suffered bereavements, and worked through the issues caused by my father-in-law’s life-changing cycling accident. Then there are the still ongoing mental health challenges with my husband, which he managed to hide from me pretty much up until we got married, despite living together for a few years. I was oblivious to his struggles until I saw the change in his behaviour, but back then we were both working full time jobs and had separate social lives.
The past ten years for me has been mostly about staying home with the children and trying to find a little independence. I admire women who manage to have children and still work their full-time jobs alongside it. I don’t know how they do it. I have been searching for work that I can fit around childcare, but mostly the wages don’t cover the costs of paid childminders, so I don’t see the point in applying for the jobs. And the jobs that I like the look of I am unsuccessful in receiving offers for because guess what, I don’t have relevant recent experience. Talk about catch-22. I would far prefer to remain self-employed and work to my own schedule, but realistically I need money. My savings account is not filling up very fast, I have no disposable income, and I am relying on my husband to pay for the household expenses and luxuries like holidays and a new car. And he refuses to take holidays, so guess what, we don’t go very far! That is something I want to change going forward.
I decided not to make any fixed New Year resolutions, because right now I don’t need that kind of pressure. I have decided to try something more manageable, like get back to reading properly. And finish writing the novel I have been working on for the past two years. But my most sensible and practical resolution needs to be finding a part-time job. My freelance work is too sporadic and unpredictable. I just need to find something that brings a regular, reliable income so I can take my children on holidays and save up for bigger projects. And I need to restart my pension account, which stopped when I left full-time employment. It might sound quite heavy and worrying, but I’m not concerned. For now I am happy to be here with my family, safe and healthy. Happy New Year, my friends!
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