I’ve come to the time in my life where I have had to face up to reality. I’ve got to get a real job.
I’ve had a real job before. I mean, I have had lots of jobs, but by real job I’m talking Monday – Friday, 9-5 or similar. I currently have four jobs but they are all just casual things that I have been fitting in around my degree. But my degree is nearly over – apart from the absolutely terrifying project I have to do over this summer – and I need to settle down, sort my life out, and pay off some of the seemingly bottomless pit that is my student debt.
The truth is, I’m scared of being a proper adult. When I have had sensible, proper, Monday – Friday 9-5 jobs in the past I have been living with my parents and there is much less pressure in that situation than the one I am in now. I’ve flown through this academic year by the seat of my pants and the very depths of my overdraft. But now it’s all on me.
I have to pay rent and bills and the aforementioned student-related debt to society. I have to pay to feed myself. Oh god… I’m going to have to make a monthly budget for food, aren’t I? Especially if I’m still on the steroids, we all know how out of control an appetite can get on those things.
I don’t live with my mum and dad anymore. What if my alarm breaks? Who is going to make sure I actually leave for work in the morning? I know I am capable of all these things, but now that it’s all on me I feel very worried about it.
The one thing I’m not worried about, however, is actually being fit for work. I remember when I applied for my first part-time job when I was 17 (trying so hard not to think about how long ago that was!) being worried that I might not get it because when it comes to hard labour I’m short and useless. I know an employer can’t discriminate on those grounds, but there was a little niggle in the back of my head that they might be concerned and find some other reason not to take me on.
Of course, now I’m Mrs Blogger, the fact that I have arthritis is all over my CV. In an interview, I literally cannot stop talking about how good I am at telling people about arthritis even if they don’t want to listen.
It’s just the probation period of any job that concerns me nowadays. I might start a job thinking I’m going to be well for the next year, but arthritis is so erratic sometimes that I’m terrified that one day – in those first few months – I will wake up in the middle of a flare beyond my control.
As my dad would say in such a scenario, “PMA, Collette – Positive Mental Attitude!”. That’s all I can do.
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(Any opinions expressed in Collette’s blog are not necessarily shared by Arthur’s Place. Nothing that you read in Collette’s blog constitutes medical advice.)