I made it to forty! I know, I’m as surprised as you are.
Looking back it’s been a tough few years. I lost my job, my house and for a year or two my marbles, but I’ve come out the other side blessed with meeting Janet. I’ve helped spawn two gorgeous boys (even if I am a wee bit biased), a wonderful family and despite everything thrown at me, a renewed hope and optimism for the future. So rather than analyse it too much I’m going to tick the decade off as a success and run. Fast!
It’s a cliché to say life begins at any age but for me forty is pivotal. Come September Sonny and Luca will both be at school full-time and my role as a stay-at-home dad will be on shaky ground, particularly as Janet is doing the shaking.
Until now I’ve coasted through life on luck and circumstance. I like to pretend I’ve a laid back attitude although I’d struggle to argue against it being called downright laziness.
That’s not to say I’ve not worked hard, and never harder than convincing Janet to lower her standards to such a level that she considered me a worthwhile partner, but career wise I’ve been stumbling into jobs since I was eighteen.
For my birthday my mum gave me a folder with all my achievements and school work in. Amongst the certificates for school triple jump champion and grade two cornet (I know, multi-talented) was my work experience report from when I was fifteen. It makes interesting reading ….
“The week showed me I wasn’t ready for an office job, and salesmanship was not a career that would suit me.”
(For the last twenty years I’ve worked in an office and been a Salesman).
“I’m not yet mentally or maturely ready for a full-time job, instead I would like to study before re-assessing my position. I feel a job with computers would suit me more.”
So that’s what I’m doing. I’m re-assessing. I was never cut out to be a salesman despite my best efforts so instead I’m going to study Computing and IT with the Open University; it was meant to be!
I think Janet suspects my plans to study are a desperate attempt to put off going out to work again, and I probably didn’t help my case by leaving a course prospectus on the table labelled ‘Do Animals know Love’, but for the first time in my life I’m going to shape my own future and it’s exciting. Choice over circumstance. Career and path in the same sentence.
And who knows, by the time I qualify I may even be ‘mentally and maturely ready for a full-time job’, even if it will have taken thirty years to get there.