Tuesday, August 23, 2011

I'm Not Going To Let Myself Go! Part 7

Well folks, it has been a while...I have been busy...but yes, I feel it is about that time again that we revisit the on-going drama that is "I'm Not Going To Let Myself Go!".

I have gotten a little more organized and instead of listing everything you have to read to catch-up for any new-comers, you can just click here and start at the beginning and move up to Part 6.

Now if you'll excuse me, I am going to do just that so I make sure I know where I am. Go grab a coffee or a glass of wine and I will be back.

You still there? OK....here we go! Not letting ourselves go, that is.

Still with me peeps?

Welcome to Part 7!


So last we visited here I had been laid off and was at home with my two young sons. Rob was back working full time again and we were trying to make things work. It was busy. But at least now I saw more of my family and we were together on weekends. I was no longer doing the hockey thing alone...but then again, it was almost summer and hockey was pretty much over at this point.

Soccer soon started and we all were able to go to both the boys' games which was nice. Lots of time together, outside as a family. We were in the suburbs and the added outdoor space meant lots of hockey on the driveway with Daddy too.

Our little athletes

But of course, Mommy - that would be me - was starting to feel antsy once again. Once the summer ended and the boys were in school, I felt like I was not being productive at all. I was not writing for anyone but my own eyes at this point. I had dreams of home staging and had gotten certified as a home stager, and I really did consider doing this as a new career path, but I didn't have the guts or the energy. Starting my own business just seemed too risky - it would take so much to go into something new and my professional experience was in not-profit association management. That is where the money was.

This is Canadian money, for my non-Canadian readers.
 We think your money looks like "play money" too!

And for those of you who don't know me personally, I have a love-hate relationship with money. I always feel like I need to save it. I have always been this way...ever since I started babysitting when I was 13. I liked to look at the money building up in my account. Ya never know when their might be a rainy day.

And now that I had a family, a home, responsibilities...well, I was always worried that a monsoon may come. So not working? Well, I could not even bring myself to buy myself new socks. If I wasn't making it, I certainly did not deserve to spend any of it on myself. This was my thinking. I did not deserve it. My self...somehow did not deserve it.

This ate me up inside. I was feeling less and less like my self and felt like I was doing nothing with my life. I was breathing, going through the motions still, trying to smile when I needed to smile, but not feeling it inside. I still questioned everything. Why was I feeling so empty? I felt a very strong urge to fill the void.

And so...I figured...if I just find another job...make money...fill that void with it...along with a new title, responsibility, fancy new business cards, travel...things would be better. I would feel more like my self.

I always feel better with my hair done, a suit on, my fists in the air and a nice chart behind me!

But what about the kids? Well...we got an offer of help (again!) from my mother-in-law and my parents and we signed the boys up for an after school program. Then before I knew it, in November, 2008...I was working full time again. This time, making even more dough and taking on even more responsibility...and commuting by car, then by train, then on foot, to my office in downtown Toronto. The heart of the city! How exciting! I was important again! Yay me!
You all know how much I LOVE this term. NOT.

Our bank account started filling again and we started plans to renovate our kitchen and do a total gut job on our basement. Woo hoo! Love house stuff. Good for ROI purposes too if we ever want to sell. There always has to be a good reason to spend that kind of cash in my world.

I bird's eye view of what my home felt like during our renos.

And so, we were both working full time, the kids were in school, and my oldest son Julian got asked to try out for a AA, competitive hockey team. And after one try-out in the spring of 2009, he made it. Now if you don't know hockey, you may want to read my article Confessions of a Hockey Mom. That will give you a little more background on that part of my world. But rep hockey is very time and money consuming. So we got really, really busy.

The Fall/Winter of 2009/2010 was pretty crazy.

And it was about to get crazier. And I was starting to feel like I was losing my mind.