At the end of June I'll leave the job I've worked at since Ella was a toddler. It hasn't been my life's greatest achievement, that job, but it has accommodated my family and our changing needs over the past 7+ years. I have managed working with my responsibilities as a mother, had another baby and taken my leave from there, and returned to continue earning that extra money that has made the extras in our life possible.
Now this role is ending I'm trying to focus on what comes next for me. I've worked full time since I was 17 and have only had a break when I was on leave with my babes. Working is something I've always done and can't imagine not doing. Having said that, the type of work I've done was never a conscious choice. I didn't finish high school because back then parts of my character were already truly established. At 17, with no immediate examples of what it meant to attend university, I couldn't understand why I would go if I didn't know what I wanted to be. I still find it difficult to apply myself to intangibles, to maybes.
Now that I am into my fourth decade and will sound my age when I admit that it's somewhat disconcerting for me to acknowledge that I feel the world has changed and I haven't quite kept up. We're Mad Men fans in this house and last night's episode for the first time showed the lovely Don Draper as an older man. He wasn't up with the music, he didn't know what was popular with the kids; it was if the world had kept turning and moving forward, but he hadn't.
It seems that younger people, in their 20's and 30's, have more of a sense of entitlement than I ever did, or even do now. They seem to know the kind of things they want and expect that they should have them. I read publications like Kinfolk, I see the lives that some are creating for themselves and wonder how they do it. Blogs, social media or all kinds, have altered things so greatly and I feel I have haven't kept up.
I certainly want something different for myself and I've talked about it many times here. Perhaps the only real difference between myself and the younger people I speak of, who seem to be achieving these realities for themselves, is my age in so far as it means a great level of responsibility than to just myself. If it's only you, if you are making choices that only affect yourself, it's possibly much easier to take a leap of faith. Perhaps it's more in the nature of some than others anyway, I know that to be true.
For one of my dreams to come to life there is a very real financial impact upon not just me, but my little family too, so I can't just jump. There is a part of me that wants to, regardless. I have never been afraid of working for what I want, so I know I would try and try again and again until it was right, but I don't have just me to think of. I have a husband, two children, all of whom demand my time and my energies. How can I balance those things which are most important to me in terms of my idea of self and family, with what I wish for myself, purely as self?
So I'm not sure, I want to change something fundamental in my life, but am not sure what it will end up looking like. I am excited by the options, which really are boundless, but also a little paralysed by all the choice. I hope I'm not back in this space in 6 months telling you about my administration role with an insurance firm, the thought alone is bad enough.