So, I just made a fake chicken wrap that’s holding fake chicken, lettuce, avocado, tomatoes, corn, and red onions, and I’ve been stewing on something all morning. I’m sitting the wrap down to talk to you, so this must be important because did you read what I wrapped?! Delicious! The thing I’ve been stewing on sounds like this: It’s almost time for me to find a job. One that makes me get dressed and drive somewhere.
The idea of working outside of the home sort of terrifies me for many reasons. (Terror is a strong emotion, hence the Sort Of. I tend to avoid strong emotions when I can.)
First off? People. I’m not very good with people. I get crazy nervous when there are more than four adults in the room, and I’m not sure many businesses would be all, “Okay. We’ve got a new hire who can’t do more than four adults. Let’s meet in shifts.” More than four adults? I’m staring at a notebook, drawing stick people, craving doughnuts, and simply not paying much attention—especially if people are talking about numbers or using words like Sales Projection or Marketing Estimation Spreadsheet. (It was really hard for me to type those words without falling asleep.)
Secondly? Migraines. I still get them every month. Sometimes I can control them with my cocktail pills and a cold washcloth, but sometimes I have to take what I call Monster Pills, and those make me loopy and dizzy and I need to lie down for a few hours. You can’t just do that at work without being That Lady Who Is Always Sleeping. (No one wants to pay the sleeping lady. I know this is true. It has to be.)
Another thing? The kids. I want to be able to be here when they’re here. If they’re sick, I don’t want to have to juggle. I want to be home. I want to be able to take them to piano and take them to doctor appointments and I don’t want that to be A Thing. I want it to be smooth. Meredith is getting ready to start middle school, and I don’t want to be the stressed out lady who gets home after five and never has time to talk. I don’t like that lady.
Let me just take a break right here to say this: I know I’m whining. I KNOW IT! I actually just requested a book from the library that will help me be a better person, so let’s focus on my blue-skied aspirations instead of my exhausting inability to SUCK IT UP.
The freelance gig has served me fairly well over the past dozen years (I come and go and am here to do laundry and make dinner and shuffle kids and take pills!), but it’s getting a bit harder to find enough work to pay bills. (Please know that we’re not struggling to pay bills. This has nothing to do with that.)
Finally? Because I haven’t worked an office job in a dozen years, I’m terrified (Not sort of. It’s the real thing this time.) that I’ve become unmarketable. I’m a 43-year-old freelance developmental editor, and I can’t really describe what I do because it’s often a clever combination of mish and mash. This means I’m probably destined to go retail, but because I have no idea how to get Netflix to work on our television, I also have zero confidence when it comes to running a credit card.
To quote Lloyd Dobler (because who wouldn’t?): I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don’t want to do that.