When I graduated high school I had no patience for anything. Although I’d been accepted into college, (with a cute little scholarship, I might add) and worked four jobs to save up the money to attend, I was burning with the desire to break out of my small-town life. I wanted to see the world. Before I left for Australia at nineteen years old, I had never seen the ocean. I lived a secluded life in a secluded town and attended church eleventeen times a week.
I didn’t have ants in my pants. My pants were on fire.
When my dad dropped me off at the airport, he gave me a quick hug and a peck on the cheek. In a couple hours I was on my way to live in a car, fall “in love” with several dashing young backpackers (and one true-blue Aussie) lose my passport(s), various wallets, my previously paralyzing inability to socialize with new people, and my general sobriety.
Sufficed to say, when I surfaced from my travelling fog almost two years later, I was flat broke. On my way back to Manitoba, (Canada) I landed in Vancouver. I was supposed to buy a bus ticket home but . . . yeah. I didn’t have a dollar to my name. I did, however, have some loose change I picked up in a few different countries, none of which was Canadian.
After tracking down an old friend and sleeping on his couch, he graciously donated some cash
to get me out of his house to get me as far as Calgary to meet my sister. I ended up staying. I met the jam to my jelly and produced three gorgeous blonde-haired hellions before moving to the east coast so my hubbie could run a bar, nine years later.
Which brings me to now.
My youngest little guy will be attending school this September.
That thought is scary.
Since I had my first son, I have defined myself as a mother. A stay-at-home mother, for the most part. My husband is a worker. A hard worker, and smart as hell. His brainpower is one of the qualities that first attracted me to him eleven (twelve?) years ago. Because he worked so hard, I took over a large portion of the household stuff and raised the kids. Sometimes *gasp* I took other little hellions into our house while their parents developed their careers. Sometimes I took waitressing and bartending shifts just to get out and talk to grownups. But, my first priority has always been my children.
And, with the beginning of the school year in a few short weeks, a large portion of that responsibility will be gone when my youngest son walks into school.
Enter early mid-life crises.
Although I put full time hours into this book thing between hours of editing, building my author platform, and critiquing the work of the other authors in my writer’s group, currently, I don’t make any money. As a mom with a dream, I don’t watch television. I don’t exercise the way I used to, and I don’t really socialize. Today, a woke up at 5, wrote till 10, submitted an article to “A Bar Above” (more on that next week), wrote 2 rather long-winded critiques on my friend’s current work-in-progress, interacted with 400 of my newest followers on Twitter, posted to my new “Author Page” on Facebook, and edited this blog post. Now, I have to take my kids to the pool, feed them lunch, do two loads of laundry and put in about an hour of housework before running to work at 5.
And, after day-dreaming all year a publisher would walk up and hand me a million dollar advance for Old Souls, I’ve realized the time has come to pull my head out of those particular clouds and get a day job. But . . . what kind of job can I get?
After ruling as Queen of My House for ten years, I am faced with entering the dreaded OFFICE WORLD on the lowest rung of the totem pole.
Tension is building.
I found that I’ve been very hard on myself over the past few months. How did I end up at thirty-three years old without furthering my education? A friend of mine visited from Calgary this week, and before I realized what I was saying, the words tumbled out of my mouth that I had made bad life choices.
Bad life choices.
But, were they that bad?
I might not make much money now, but I will. I have three beautiful hellions, a supportive husband, and I have almost completed my first (kick-@$$) book. I’ve travelled the world. I’ve lived all over Canada. I sacrificed an extra income to raise my children. Every day, I wake up early to do what I love.
I’m finished apologizing to myself about my “bad life choices.” I’m finished thinking I might not have what it takes.
Because I do. My book is going to kill it.