Starting Again

A new chapter of my life has recently begun: I am now unemployed. A few weeks following my surgery for my ectopic pregnancy back in April, while I was on a sixty day maternity leave, my husband asked me if I still wanted to return to work. I was taken aback, because I had no plans of leaving work anytime at that time. The first thing I asked was, “Where do I get money to buy stuff for myself?!”

A, my husband, asked me the question several times more in the weeks that followed and eventually he stopped asking and told me to think it over and decide for myself. It wasn’t exactly an easy decision, to be honest, and right before I handed in my resignation letter to my manager, I was still asking myself if I was really going to do it. But I did, and so here we are.

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I’m not new to beginnings: I’ve worked at three different companies in the last three years, leaving the first two for practical reasons. The most recent one I left because I decided the idea of being a housewife wasn’t so bad. I can stay at home, work freelance, do routine housework I already do anyway. Best of all, I’d have time to make art again.

Fortunately, A is very supportive. Always have been, and I am extremely grateful. He’s always said he’d support my creative endeavors and that he’d actually prefer it if I pursued a creative career.

In 2013, I tried to do the same, but eventually went back to working full time in early 2016 because I fucked up my finances (self-sabotaging behaviors and credit cards are a recipe for disaster) and had to find a more stable source of income. I was also ignorant then (still am) about the business of making art. I’d like to think I’ve learned a lot since then, but I am also aware of how much knowledge and experience I still lack, which bring’s to mind what Ira Glass called the gap.

I first saw this video four or five years ago and I remember tearing up because the message really resonated with me. I was still just a beginner then. I still am a beginner now.

A quote from the video: “A lot of people never get past that phase. A lot of people at that point, they quit.” I was one of those people. I quit, restart, quit, restart, quit, restart, all because I couldn’t bridge that gap, forgetting this other line, which I should have never forgotten: “And the most important possible thing you can do is do a lot of work — do a huge volume of work.”

I set out to achieve this over a year ago now and failed. If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s failing, but I can confidently say I’m also good at picking myself back up and trying again. I am thirty one now, and I’m only starting, but as they always say, it’s better late than never.