Did you grow up with an ambition or career in mind?
I didn’t. I don’t remember having a yearning for being a train driver or anything else really. I don’t know why. We aren’t a very ambitious family to be honest. My mum never worked. My dad worked hard slogging through shifts to keep a comfortable life but he made no secret of the fact that he didn’t enjoy his job. He showed us work ethic – sometimes you just have to work regardless of your enjoyment. And his was a happy ending (workwise -he’s still here!) He worked hard and saved hard and has now retired early to a hot country to enjoy his prime. But it’s left a kind of need for something that I might even remotely enjoy or get fulfilment out of.
So I find myself at this crossroads. I feel a self-imposed September deadline looming. Roo will start full time school in September and I need to be back to work or in full time training at least.
For a few years now my long term goal was to go to university and become a Social Worker. I’d love to do this but financially I can’t for a couple of years. Because this house is classed as temporary homeless housing the rent is 2 1/2 times what I will be paying in a normal Local Authority place. That’s a very big rent and the way Housing Benefit cuts and caps are going I don’t think I could cover it on student loans. So that dream is on hold for now.
Sometimes I long to work from home in some capacity. For me there is a huge amount of guilt attached to a full time job with the kids in full time childcare. I’m they only Parent active in their lives and I can’t imagine not being here for them. I know it’s silly and that plenty of parents cope but it’s a deep seated fear of mine. Probably a throw back from my mum actually. These lovely conflicting ideals of my parents huh! But what would I do?
I feel I have NO skills to offer. When I left school with embarrassingly poor exam results I headed straight for France and a job on a campsite. College never appealed to me as I was desperate for my independence. From there it was straight into a Nanny position and then after a year my own daughter was born. Toddler groups, Play schools and babysitter work covered those years when she was young. It was a time when you could do those jobs with no qualifications and purely on merit. And when she went to school full time I opened a shop. I loved it but wow – 7 days a week, huge huge stress and very little money did not a happy mummy make.
18 months down the line and I had to face the fact Bea needed me more (and that business wasn’t my strong suit). She was struggling so much at school that home schooling was clearly the better choice for her. It really helped and I will never ever regret it but it’s left another big gap in my Job history – which was already sketchy and poor at best!
And just when I was ready to focus on my future job/career along came an unexpected Roo shaped bundle. And all was forgotten in the swirl of nappies and night feeds and being a single parent to two…
Last year marked a change in attitude for me. I gave myself a shake and applied for university….and then got made homeless and emotionally could not contemplate both things so University got put on hold again. Again.
And now? Now I’m lost. I keep flitting from one idea to another and I have no idea where I’m heading. I just know I need to actually point myself in one direction and bloody well start sorting this out!
Thank goodness Bea has a sense of ambition and drive – she has her mind set on becoming a Vet and I’ve every confidence she’ll achieve it. She knows it will be a long hard slog but that doesn’t put her off. Being Dyslexic and struggling with studying hasn’t dampened her spirit. My girls got it straight!
Did you retrain for your dream job? Did you grow up knowing exactly what you wanted to be? How’s that working out for you now?