I saw something today that caught my eye. It reminded me of my old career, my place of employment, the close friends I had, the life I was creating for my family, the life I once lived. I reminisced for a little while about my "old life". It put such a smile on my face. A happiness in my heart to remember. It is very interesting to me how I can feel so strongly about my "old life" and yet thoroughly enjoy and love my "new life".
I call it my "old life" and my "new life" as they are so vastly different from one another. In my "old life" I used my education that I worked hard for. In my "old life" I felt very intelligent, purposeful, secure, valuable, confident. I knew I was headed places and so did the people around me. I garnered respect, and the best thing was, I deserved it! Recently I was digging through my filing cabinet and discovered old essays I'd written, files of work I'd done and training plans for new employees. The "new me", was seriously impressed with the "old me"! I knew my shit! Fortunately the great thing, in my opinion, about education and experiences, is that no one can take them away from you. I know that my education is still in there. I also know that the experiences I had will always stay with me also.
My new life is not so much about intelligence but definitely has more purpose. I get to spend the majority of my day with two people who are more important than anything else in my world. I chose this life for myself and my children, but my job was so much a part of who I was that I had no other identity. I think that's the biggest reason why I really enjoy my "new life" because I'm more of a "person" now. I have hobbies and interests that have nothing to do with my career, or children. I used to get so wrapped up in my career that I didn't enjoy my life, it was all about money and working towards what society said I should have and not what I truly wanted.
So many people allow their job to define them, and I used to be one of them.
I chose this path for myself. While at first I hated it, because I felt that I had nothing. I felt like I lost everything that defined me and truth be told at the time I had but it allowed me to grow. I feel extremely fortunate to be home with my children. Raising them, instilling values in them, watching them grow and change, seeing their personalities develop.
I mentioned earlier about feeling intelligent, and sometimes I still do feel intelligent, but so many people have negative views of sex workers "how much could you really know when you're resorting to THIS". While I know how much I have to work and how much I research fetishes to make new clips and make sure I get the fetish right, some times even I forget that I know more than how to assemble a plastic yellow brick road (for example).
I mentioned garnering respect. Well, as is my nature and personality, I require my children to not only respect me but to respect others as well. I expect others to respect me also, and I give the same in return.
I referred to being valued. I know that my family values me. Just in a much different way than the working world did. I will say, I had a boss once, an amazing woman and she once told me that each and everyone of us mattered. There is not one person who can step into our lives and take our places, in our families. Amazing how that comes to me as I type this. Amazing how you can begin to ramble.
My "old life" gave me tons of security. Monetary security. My "new life" makes me a little more cognizant of my finances but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. Budget is a term I've always used, so is delayed gratification. Thankfully though with my "new life" my instant gratification comes from the smile my children give me when I help them put together a puzzle or talk about going to pick out a new book (we just got Dumbo the other day).
In transitioning between the two lives I had to realize where my purpose lied. I used to think "if your not making money, then what good do you bring to the family?" Well, I know now that purpose is more than money. My purpose is being there for my kids. It is also doing dishes, vacuuming, doing laundry, all the domesticated things that are truly important to the functioning of my family.
The biggest difference between my two lives is that I thought I was confident before, but again it was just me living up to a society standard of what confidence was but not actually confident where now it doesn't matter what others think of me because I know where I stand and that I'm happy with myself. My confidence is more solid now. Plus, the thing is, when I worked in the corporate world and had my career, I wasn't nearly as healthy, or in shape.
So, much has improved where some would think my life has fallen apart but really its fallen together. Sure, certain things could be better but they will come in time. I guess I shared all this just to say that it is quite interesting to me that i can love and miss my "old life" without wanting it back because I feel completely blessed in my "new life". How they both can exist inside of me and make me feel the way I do for very different reasons. Be vastly different and yet, still complete me and make me who i am today.
I am very fortunate.