On Time and More of It

For those of you who don’t know, I was recently “restructured” out of a job. Remember my lovely job in downtown Trenton? (I posted about Trenton here and here). Well, it is no more.

On one hand, this is not terrible. I wasn’t thrilled with the job anyway and financially and emotionally, it made sense for me to walk away. No condolences necessary, please.

On the other hand, now I have to be concerned about money and making a life for myself, two things I never had to worry about during my thirteen years on the gravy train that is the federal government.

So here I am. Kicked off the train right onto my butt. It’s 9:30 on a Tuesday morning and I’m blogging. I’ve been home for a month now, taking it all in, and here’s what I’m ready to share:

It’s weird being home. I’ve worked since forever, besides taking a few short breaks for maternity leaves (if you could classify those as “breaks”) and for studying for the bar exam (which also shouldn’t be considered a “break” since I actually studied all summer).

Why is it weird?

I’m freaked out by the idea that I can use my time as I wish. I’ve never had that before. My time was always dedicated to something– morning hours were for getting the boys where they need to be, then I’d rush to work, then after work I had to get the boys from wherever they were and rush back. In the evening it was a juggling act with my husband over activities, homework, dinner, baths, etc. Finally, bedtime would arrive and I’d have about two hours to decide what I wanted to do.

Now though? I still dedicate the mornings to getting the boys out of the door. After that, until 2:30 when I have to get JC (no more After School Care for us), I have to decide what to do.

Um, yeah, I don’t know how to do that. It’s like when I tried to take “Self-Paced Logic” in college, and had to drop out after two weeks since I hadn’t yet bought the book. Now I’m trying to work out a “Self-Paced Life.” Hmm.

First off, let me give a shout out to all the stay at home moms. I get it now. There’s a lot to be done. But before, while working-for-pay, I didn’t feel the guilt of not doing it as much. I was literally imprisoned by my office, with no chance of parole prior to 5:30 p.m. Now? I sit here typing this blog post and feel the guilt creep up (I should be cleaning something, I should be calling someone, I should be doing something, anything, because I’m on the outside now!).

Of course there are a million things I want to do for the house and family. I’ve done about five of them so far (cleaned out the boys’ dressers, organized the kitchen cabinets, started a renovation project with a contractor, made about a hundred doctor appointments, signed the boys up for activities that we can now do with our new schedules).

There are also a million things I want to do for myself. I’ve done a couple of them (worked on my writing, sort of started a workout routine).

I’m still working out the details of how to actually get stuff done. My dad asked me yesterday, “What have you been doing?” (I think he missed my blog posts- Hi Dad!). The answer is, I’ve been busy, but I’m not sure what I’ve been doing.

I haven’t turned on the television during the day (… not much, anyway. I do enjoy Empire and started House of Cards again), so I’m not sitting here binge watching.

I’ve been working on my writing. I want to start the moving process for my projects- moving from draft to final, moving from the laptop to the world. I also joined an online writing group that takes some time, and I’m helping others with their projects.

I’ve been “cooking.” I use the term loosely. I hate doing it and think I’m terrible at it, although my husband claims I’m doing great (beggars can’t be choosers). I make a kick-ass loaf of bread though:

Kick-ass loaf of bread, from scratch, people.

Kick-ass loaf of bread, from scratch, people.

I walk the dog, a task I dread but end up enjoying once I’m out there. Isn’t she cute:

photo (13)

Sleepy Time

Kiri Dog

Kiri Dog

I food shop during the day, which is probably the greatest luxury ever- working people cannot possibly understand the joy of food shopping on a Wednesday morning at the Shoprite. The difference between the Shoprite on a Saturday afternoon with two kids, and on a Wednesday morning solo, is like night and day.

I also spend some time looking for jobs, which freaks me out and makes me nervous. Dealing with unemployment in New Jersey freaks me out and makes me nervous, too. If you need a reason not to vote for Chris Christie if he runs for President in 2016, look to the New Jersey unemployment office. If he can’t make that work, how is he going to make a country work?

AND, I did this:

photo (9)

My hand (with a photo bomb by this blog post). No, I didn’t get remarried! Look at my nails, friends. The nails.

I painted my nails blue. This is significant because (a) I’ve been biting my nails for the past two years from stress with the crap going on at work and now that I’m home they are growing, (2) I had time to paint them and let them dry, and (3) that’s Wonder Woman nail polish that I bought from MAC years ago and never had a chance to enjoy. I bought the blue (awesomely called “Spirit of Truth”) and the red (amazingly called “Obey Me”) solely because of the marketing. What employed person with money to spend could resist this:

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Where am I going with this post? I forgot. I seem to have drifted into my favorite relevantly irrelevant-ness arena, so I’ll just end it with a quote:

“Time is an illusion.”

(Albert Einstein)

Have a great day, whether you are at work or at home, whether you are in survival mode or self-pacing. It’s all an illusion, enjoy what you can.

16 Comments

  1. Ah, now that explains why you haven’t responded to any of my texts for the past month.  I’m so sorry to hear that you lost your job.  Terrible.  How did that happen?  Did the office shut down or just restructure? What is your game plan?  Do you want to go back to work or will be be a SAHM for awhile.  You seem to be loving it already … Thinking of you,Jamie

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  2. I am going to work so I can not write much but my past few years have been a literal disaster due to being laid off several years back. In fact, my site came about due to me sending out countless resumes and needing something else.

    For two years I have been working for a former co-worker. He is wonderful. The company however is the pits. I need money to revive the financial titanic so poor Stevie is stuck for the moment in a tar pit of overqualification.

    But…getting laid off has woken me up. I have more creativity and I started writing again.

    So I am just waiting to see what I can make happen compared to the past when I was working and putting all my chips in one basket.

    You will get through this!

    Now I am off to a repetitive meeting with some dullberts!

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  3. Funny that now that I’ve been laid off, I’m realizing that a lot of people have had similar experiences. “Waiting to see what I can make happen” is such a good way to put it. I like that you added the “that I can make happen” in there, instead of just waiting to see what “will happen.” We are in control. With a little help from the Universe, we’ll get ourselves to where we should be, where we are meant to be. (Which I hope will be a more fun place than repetitive meetings with dullberts.🙂 )

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