This was a week I never thought I’d have. Why? I’ve been a stay at home mom for almost 12 years now. Mostly because I made very little money and it covered little more than daycare. So going back to work didn’t seem like the smart thing to do. And I’ve enjoyed my time at home greatly.
But the husband and I have come to a point where one income (I don’t make enough on the writing yet to consider that full income) just isn’t enough. It’s been too risky having only one income. So I took a day job. Started this week. And I’ll admit, while I’m super thankful that I got one right away (thanks to my awesome friend, you know who you are), I was very worried that I’d not be able to handle all the aspects of my life.
Not only do I have the nonprofit writing org I’m President of, but our biggest event is coming up in two weeks. There are a lot of tasks that I’ve been taking care of for this event, and also needing to get new events on the calendar and finalized. I also have writing deadlines for both fiction and nonfiction, things due this week and others requiring a great deal of writing. Plus submissions needing editing for others. And I’ve had the same errands, wife and motherly duties, plus my external relationships–both D/s and friendships–family drama, tax agents to talk to, personal gigs to arrange, other conventions I’m paneling and attending to finalize with, and this list literally goes on.
I didn’t think I’d be able to do this. I thought surely I’d fall behind on something. And that’s not to say I won’t have weeks where I will. But what I found is that by managing my time, and utilizing it wisely, I was able to complete these tasks. And this isn’t counting all the social media accounts I manage and post for.
So what did this week teach me?
I can do all the things.
Sure, I’m tired. I’ve been going to bed earlier, though this has actually given me more energy throughout the day. And there’s things I wasn’t able to do this week. But I got a lot done. A TON done. All with working a day job too.
I have another project I’ve been working on and had hoped to get going in the next few months, and after taking the day job, I wasn’t sure I could do it. But now I know I can. I may have to grow it slower–for those of you who don’t know, I’m starting a small press with a very specific focus–but I can do it. The biggest difference has been not wasting time during the day. It’s been in allowing myself a certain amount of relax time, then utilizing the rest.
The reason I share all of this isn’t to brag ,”Haha! Look what I can do!” Because honestly, I didn’t think I could. I spoke with someone at Westercon who works a day job, runs a writing retreat, has a small press, writes, and is a parent too. And he’s doing it. He helped me shift the negative thoughts in my head that I needed to give up these things I love doing.
I don’t have to.
I think when we’re full of fear, it’s harder to get things done. And I was afraid. I’ve been avoiding and dreading this step for a long time because I was completely convinced that I’d have to give something up. Especially after I was raised that women who work have abandoned their children. And that was all lies. Horseshit told to me to keep me locked in a box. A box I have no desire to stay in.
So I’ve ventured forth into the land of day jobs and it didn’t derail me. It was scary, though not having income is far scarier, and I did have a lot of PTSD around going back to work since I didn’t want to be that woman that abandoned her kids and failed as a wife. But I’m working. And I didn’t fail as a wife or a mom.
I know a lot of my readers stress a great deal. They have a hard time finding time for the things they love. Some have health issues and are tired a lot, others work long hours and have few moments to write, and the list goes on. This is why I’m sharing this post. Because I know how easy it is to get down and think we have to give something we love up. But we don’t. We may not complete it as fast. We may have to manage our time better and stop sitting in front of the tele–don’t do it anyway, it rots your brain–but we *can* do it. No matter the challenges, we can do it.
I’m excited for this new adventure ahead of me. I feel there are even more possibilities now because I’ve faced something I feared. I realize I have it in me to do far more than I give myself credit for and that has changed things. That, and I had a wonderful time with D today (silly girl giggles), which changed me too.
Overall, this was a great week. One that moved quickly, but a good one. And tomorrow I get to spend time with friends, celebrating a fabulous person’s birthday. Then Sunday I may spend more time with a friend and I get to work on two exciting articles that I’ve been doing research for. A fantastic week to end with fun and joy. All because I didn’t let my fear stop me from trying, and therefore, succeeding. 🙂
*image by Kristin Smith at freeimages.com*