Tuesday, 13 September 2016

A Strange But Not Unpleasant Existence

My life is very strange just now, though not unpleasant. I quit my job to move to Milwaukee, which makes me unemployed for the first time since I entered the workforce in 2008. It is an odd feeling. On the one hand it's delightful. No one expects me to do anything, which is very freeing. I change out of my night sweats into my day sweats sometime in the morning, or whenever the urge strikes, and then back into the night sweats later that evening. In between, I drink endless cups of coffee, monitor the roomba from the comfort of my couch, apply for jobs, and observe my cats snoozing the day away in bizarre positions.

Each day I make a point of waiting until at least 5pm to pour myself a glass of wine, which I consider proof of extreme self control.

On the other hand, the unemployment situation is kind of angsty. I've never considered myself a particularly career-oriented person, and before now would regularly joke to people that I'd like nothing more than to retire a few decades early and be a full-time stay-at-home cat mother. But it turns out a large chunk of my self worth is connected to my job, because I feel like a loser when I have to tell people I don't have one. I kind of dread meeting new people now (which is sadly the only type of people I'm meeting these days, since I just moved here and know almost no one), because I know they're going to ask me what I do, and I'll have to give the same spiel about how I just quit my job to move here and am looking for a new job but don't worry! I'm totally taking my time! I'm intentionally taking my time! Barf...

And talking to people I already know is just as bad. Everyone is constantly asking me if there's any news on the job front. The news is that it's 3pm, there is a giant chocolate stain on my day sweats, and I think it might be time for a nap. Deal with it!

It's also angsty cause money. My salary has always been on the modest side, but I've still been able to live comfortably, going out to eat whenever I like, buying new clothes when I can't face the idea of wearing anything in my closet, taking nice vacations once in awhile, etc. And now I have to budget and stuff, and it's very boring. First world problems.

Anyway, I have decided to try to make it as a freelance editor/writer. I know, what a cliche. But whatever. I think I'm made for life on the couch, with cats, and this is a career that can accommodate that, so I'm taking a stab at it. And, after one week of "freelancing," I am proud to announce that I've earned a total of $18! I think that's a very promising start.

So, life is good(ish). And Milwaukee is unexpectedly charming, or at least is giving the illusion of being so in these late summer days.

The Milwaukee River. (Who knew Milwaukee had a river??)