Disclosure: I am terribly indecisive. I like to blame it on being a Libra—it’s written in the stars so I’m not at fault!
But you guys, I have important decisions to make right now! My school year is done, and it was bittersweet as it’s the last year I’ll teach preschool, for many reasons out of my control. Meanwhile I applied for an English position, which is my licensure area, because there is one available at the district where I already work. But it’s full time. I haven’t worked full time since I went back to school and then had my second child, so 15 years ago.
Why apply then? I feel I should put my teaching license to use since I accrued ridiculous amounts of student loan debt for it (although I do have an English degree, so writing is putting it to use). I want to have money to do extra things and not feel like a struggling artist all the time. I want to pay off debt. Overall it seems like the financially responsible decision to make. When I said this to a friend of mine, she said, “But that’s not you!” I love her for understanding me so well.
So if the position is offered to me, it seems silly to turn it down. But I don’t want to work full time. I wake up at night and panic about how I’m going to balance everything. I already struggle to get it all done, feeling like I’m barely keeping my head above water, gasping for breath as one more task piles up. And I work part time. I have no idea how people have full time jobs, kids, cook and clean, and have hobbies or time to relax. All of you doing it, you amaze me!
I also don’t want a full time job because I’m working at pursuing my dream of being a writer. I gave myself these last nine months while I taught part time to see what I could accomplish—my ideal being I’m making decent money by now so I’d know if I could pursue it and financially survive. While I’m not even close to where I hoped I’d be by now, I really have been the most consistent and productive with my writing in over a decade. And I know making it as a writer requires being willing to play the long game.
And this week it may have started to pay off! Just as I’m waiting and waiting to hear about an interview for the teaching job I’m not sure I want, but offers stability…I get an email. A gentleman introduced himself as having liked the writing samples I sent, and is interested in doing a test article to see if I’m a good fit.
At first I’m wary because it came to my personal email. For UpWork, LinkedIn, etc. I use a business email. I also couldn’t recall applying for any jobs recently, though I’ve been plenty busy beating myself up about this fact, even though I don’t know if I want to focus on any type of technical writing since creative writing is my passion. My indecisiveness knows no bounds. (This quote is very similar to a favorite movie of mine, but I changed one word. Anyone know?)
Back to the suspicious email…I email back and am honest about not knowing where he got this address, although I tell him I am interested because I don’t want to throw away a possible opportunity due to the fact I feel like a scatterbrained lunatic lately.
He gets back to me, saying he doesn’t know which FaceBook site I applied through, but gave me links to websites the company writes content for. Ah, FaceBook. Personal email now makes sense, and it rings a bell. I did apply for a job like four months ago, having something to do with cats (surprise, surprise, right?). So I agree to move forward with the next phase, writing the article to determine if I’m a good fit, which can then lead to more regular work.
So last night I finished a test article about eating roosters (yes, eating). After having several discussions with my co-workers, many who are farmers or grew up on a farm, I realized I now know more than most of them about this topic. I also came to the conclusion this is why writers know so many random facts. 😂
My fingers are crossed this really, truly does lead to more articles, and it’s not a scam, but a legitimate opportunity. I’m cautious it’s too good to be true, even though he didn’t offer me any crazy amount of money, but to me a reasonable $40 to write 1k words. (Any of my writing friends reading this—feel free to chime in here!)
What I can’t figure out though, is what the universe is trying to tell me. Because I am indecisive, I don’t typically set a goal to get what I want, and then make a plan to achieve it. If you don’t know what you want, you can’t do that.
My decisions come from where life leads me. So if I apply for the teaching job and it’s offered to me, I must be meant to teach. If I apply for writing jobs and begin to get leads and make money, then I must be meant to write.
But now here I am at the end of the year, and both career options could open up at the same time. Can I do both? It feels unlikely. I’m well aware of the demands of teaching. It could be possible once I have the routines and material down, and more feasible once both my children have flown the coop (I have chickens on my mind).
Giving up or cutting back on writing wouldn’t be forever, but how long have I already waited? Pushed it aside? Will I find the fire and passion and drive again? Or will I be an old woman, remembering the dreams I once had, trying to swallow the bitter truth I have no one to blame but myself? Am I just being dramatic?
I keep hoping the universe gives me a sign, and I choose the right path. “Right” being the one which leads me to my best life. So here I am, looking down the two roads as far as I can, ”Yet knowing how way leads on to way,” I have doubts ”if I should ever come back.”
What qualities do you struggle with? How do you make a decision? And what do you think I should do? I’m famous in my circle for asking everyone else’s opinions!
And did you get the movie quote mentioned in this post? 😉