For the past few months I have been wishing for a way to work less hours so I could devote more time to organizing and writing. There are two main projects with which I volunteer a significant amount of time, after work and on weekends. I’m really passionate about the work of the organizations, and really wanted to be able to devote daytime hours to them. In addition, there are rallies, protests, events and workshops occurring almost daily, many of them during the day, that also wanted to show up for. Pursuing additional writing opportunities was the other reason i wanted to work less hours. I’m very new to the freelance writing game, and needed more time to devote to strengthening my writing skills and pursuing writing opportunities. Well, I got what I wished for….I was laid off from my job on Monday.
I’m not thinking of this as a negative, at least I’m trying really hard not to. I’ve been surprisingly calm about the whole thing; it’s because I have some support and people I can fall back on for help. I really don’t know what I would do if I had little or no support, plus children to feed or other family to take care of. Millions of people all over the country are dealing with un-or underemployment, on top of other life stressors, criminalization and state surveillance. I still have a certain amount of privilege, in terms of my education, professional network, and family and friendship support, which will help me find employment sooner than if i didn’t have these things.
But, I am also going to use this time to thoroughly assess the type of work that I enjoy and makes me feel like I have a purpose in life. I have no excuses now for not taking the time to lay the foundation for a fulfilling life. I want to wake up in the morning and actually look forward to my day and the work I’m going to engage in. I know everyday won’t be like that, even if I am working in my dream job, but if most days I enjoy my work, then I’ll be happy. It’s now or never.