There are some things which are certain for us.
We know we would be happy that this is our forever home.
Of course a lottery win might change that, but overlooking the sea, with a great outdoor space. It’s ours.
We know we are a family of five.
Taking out four children last week, and having two sets of twins- and six children- on a playdate tested our home’s foundations I’m sure.
Career wise. I have a clue. But not much more.
I sat with my boss last week and had to refrain from wanting to curl up under a desk, as I explained my rationale, that after telling him I was going to apply for (internal process) I had then told him I had changed my mind.
Indecisiveness, such a good look to wear at work.
A job had hit the intranet. One that I really wanted in 2008.
When I was living in Yorkshire, studying for my MBA, and it was just Mr J and me.
And for a few days, I entertained the job as mine. And yes, I would really enjoy it.
But here’s the thing, I love my current job, as I have loved all jobs I have had.
The good times have always outweighed the bad.
And I have always ensured the feeling of making a difference is greater than the pursuit of red tape.
I explained to my boss why I didn’t apply, and after seeing this quote last night, I think perhaps I am too honest:
“There are no grown-ups. Everyone is winging it, some just do it more confidently.”
This September the boys will start full-time education.
Options will become more viable.
Instead of DITT will we become DIIET (Double-income, in-education twins) or will we decide that single income really does give us the flexibility we need in our home life?
Will I have more options employment-wise?
Because that is the thing.
I would put money on no child ever saying they wanted a job (even remotely) similar to mine.
And no teenager looking at career routes saying they really wanted to work for the organisation I work for.
And nothing is wrong with either, we are fortunate to afford a single-income lifestyle (not withstanding what would have been our childcare bill), and as I’ve said I love my job, I have had those bubbles of excitement in my stomach since January of all 2015 may have in store.
But, what do I want to be when I grow up?
In a performance review a few years ago I told my manager it was important to me, that if I had to be away from my children- especially overnight, that I could return home and say “Mummy was making a difference to the lives of others.” That I wasn’t away from them on a whim, that I could somehow legitimise it. And that remains true and fortunately, whilst I am a little far removed, it remains a core part of my current role.
But before applying for roles, I need to know what my game is, maybe not the end-game, some of my hopes are quashed, but not negatively, I have a far better reality.
But my end-game now has many dimensions, I am more uncompromising than I was in 2008.
I joke that careers advice should include “Have any hopes of ever becoming a parent? Become a teacher.”. Because how on earth do you juggle school holidays without feeling even more compromised as a parent.
And yes, I know successive governments have completely eliminated the values and aspirations of teachers everywhere, whilst definitely establishing stress levels at an all time high.
I digress, I explained to my boss that whilst everything will go on around me, that I have to remain aware of me.
That September is a key milestone. I think I have to hope that my perfect job will suddenly be available then and not before.
And that gives me six months to reflect, to consider, and potentially to plan.
What do I want to be when I grow up?
What are my non-negotiables?
What am I willing to give up?
Maybe then I can start making plans with conviction.