And so I embark on the road to yet another brand new chapter in the quest to find this new bloody normal I keep banging on about. But at least this one is a belter! Well at least I hope it’s going to be.
Recently I shared the unfortunate changes in my job Mat Leave Shambles and what a shambles that really was!. Actually the more I think about it the more pissed off I get so I’m doing my best to put it completely out my mind at least for now. With all that work drama aside, just simply knowing my maternity leave was coming to an end was weighing heavily on my emotions. I was trying to psyche myself up to leave Leo regularly and find my way back into the big wide working world again. I was very lucky in the sense that Steven has never pressured me into returning to work and let me know he would do his best to support me however long it took me to feel strong enough to return. But for me I knew it was time. My home was becoming my safe place where I could hide away for days on end if I wanted. With no set routine, no where to really be and only a baby for company day in day out (all be it a very cute little baby!) I was in very real danger of becoming an accidental recluse. It just felt safer at home away from the “is this your first baby?” questions and all the other triggers of dealing with post traumatic stress plus grief plus new baby hormones x2 as my babies were born so close together that my hormones were / are shot to shit!.
I was constantly worrying about something and my ridiculous anxiety levels were crippling me to the effect I couldn’t even go to Braehead for a snoop around the shops myself. Every turn was a reminder of all I had lost but I had also gained so much in these last few months too and he was snuggled soundly right beside me. It was time to try and take some control back and being honest I didn’t know where to start but I knew it involved carving out a little bit of the world that was just for me. I hoped that by doing this I would become stronger mentally, pushing myself WAY out the comfort zone of my mat leave life and in turn become a mummy that Leo could be proud of . A mummy I could be proud of too.
Over the last year I have felt the strong urge to write and every time I find the time to write I feel the weight on my shoulders fade away a little more. The pent up angst would dissipate for a short time and allow my brain time to clear some of the fog. Could there be a way I could follow my heart and create a life for myself doing something I really wanted to do?.
Not a lot of people know this but when I was just a wee girl in the big wide world I had even bigger dreams of becoming a journalist and writer some day. I left school and went on to study to be just that but back in 2000 there really wasn’t anywhere near as much opportunity to break into the media world. In my experience it was all about who you knew and if you could afford to work for free interning somewhere for a few years just to get your foot in the door. I did try my hardest to get my big size 7s (& a half) in through a publications door though. Before mobile phones we only had the “hoose phone” (yes I am THAT old…) and I remember my 16 year old self, sitting on the stairs in my mums as they house phones back then were attached at the wall by a curly cord and didn’t stretch far. So with that young excited spark in me I phoned every newspaper and magazine I had heard of begging to let me know of any junior job opportunities that may be coming up but try as I did there was nothing in my area. As the months passed, our phone bill grew my hopes of being a writer disappeared as did my ambitions to become a journalist one day.
I grew up in a very working class, single parent family with a mum who worked all the hours under the sun a week to provide for me. My mum was always so encouraging and supportive in anything I wanted to turn my hand at, instilling a good work ethic and a belief that I could be anything I wanted to be. But with that said and as hard as my mum worked we simply couldn’t afford for me to be working for free. Also around that time my mum also had to give up work due to becoming more and more crippled with rheumatoid arthritis. It was then I decided that I would find another path in full time employment instead. And see to be honest I’ve been bloody miserable in every job since !
It’s an absolute embarrassment to admit but I have never really found my niche and floated into one job after another. I’ve changed jobs as often as my hair working as a hairdresser, a makeup artist, in doctors surgeries, a chippy, waitressing, bar work, tool store, various clothes shops, offices, various call centres and even in a soap stall until I finally found my way into working in a banks for near enough 10 years. Try as a might , I never felt fulfilled by any of my career choices and was starting to believe that maybe I would be one of those unlucky buggers that are stuck in a job they hate just to make some coin until they can finally retire one day.
Even through all these different jobs that silly ambitious dream of being a writer one day never left and instead my passion for literacy grew. I am proud to say I always have been a complete and utter book geek since I was teeny tiny. In fact I love reading whether its a book , magazine or some other publication and that’s probably where my passion for writing in my blog has came from. With Francesca as my muse, I put pen to paper so to speak for the first time in years and For Francesca began. Now with Leo here I started to wonder if there is a way I could possibly go back to finish what I started all those years ago.
So with all that being said I took the jump and enrolled in college to study journalism again. It was such a momentous and scary decision for me as I think I’m actually technically classed as “middle aged!”. There’s nothing like going back to college and being around all these young school leaving whipper snappers to make you feel even older! But so far I’m loving it. It’s a massive shock to the system being back in full time education especially with a wee baby who has decided sleeping is very uncool. Each day I drag my tired pale ass into college and I can feel that little spring coming back into my step. I can now imagine a future that looks a little brighter now after all the heartache of this last year. There has been times where the mum guilt has been overwhelming wondering if I should be spending every little last minute with Leo especially as I know how hard it is to not get that chance with your child and I wonder if its a selfish notion to chase silly dreams. I just keep thinking back to my own upbringing which spurs me on as I was always taught to be an independent kick ass female. One that can always stand on her own two feet. It’s also very important to me especially now we are raising a son to stay mentally healthy and as focussed as I can be. I want to show him a world where his mummy is equal to his daddy in every aspect of the word and that no matter what life throws at you there is hope of happiness at the end of the dark tunnel. Just don’t give up wee man! I know how very lucky I am to have the 2 best guys ever in my life supporting their partner and mummy in this new life direction. Well 3 if I include our main man Dakota of course.
If only that fresh faced 16 year old with those big bright ambitious eyes could see me now ….
As Always For Francesca And Leo xxx