We are moving. An enforced move by our landlords returning to this country. So I have started the terrible task of trying to relocate my family. Moving is bad enough, but if you are happy and bedded-in, it’s most unsettling; upsetting perhaps is a better word.
This time I’m doing it all on my own. No Coach. No husband. The responsibility feels stifling.
The situation is exacerbated by having to make our senior school application for my eldest daughter in October. (Which is another blot on the landscape!) All geographical changes need a school bloody catchment strategy. The timing sucks….putting it as politely as I can here.
Life has changed dramatically for my children over the past several years. Their parents have separated, then divorced and then forged new relationships – some successful, whilst other partnerships haven’t survived life’s stresses. They’ve moved cities, schools (in Petal’s case, twice) and homes. They’ve made new friends and joined new circles, clubs and groups.
Once we settled in, our home really has been a haven, a sanctuary, and a constant. Pickle, 7, keeps asking me “where will we live mummy?”. And I mean keeps asking, as it’s clearly playing on her mind, like it is mine. And even though its not our house, it is our home.
So the problem needs solving and I have set about doing just that this week. The combination of my self employed status, single parent status and cat owner status is going to make it an uphill struggle but I shall not be beaten, even if the rental market is extortionate. Can you believe I once part-owned two houses? Still, I wouldn’t go back to being married just to keep them.
I’m five months in to being a business owner and whilst it’s been scary at times, daunting at others and often very confusing, I’m starting to make a few quid. And I mean a few! Not enough to buy my own home but Rome wasn’t built in a day, and all that jazz. Still, by networking furiously and using my natural sociable charms (!) I have encouraged a few small businesses to give me a go and trust me with their work, clients and/or their social media.
Locally I’ve found all female networking events really useful. I’ve have found a group of like-minded mums in the same boat, attempting to reinvent themselves after becoming parents. Either that or carve a working life from their established professions by becoming freelance in order to get that amazing “work life balance” we all talk about but have no idea what it really represents. Does it actually mean doing a job but working from the car, gym club, park, pool-side or sofa in to the early hours? Less balancing more juggling!!
I had worried I would embarrass myself in front of a board room full of power dressed Margaret Thatchers ready to quiz me in a Dragons Den style about forecasts and profit margins but happily it’s been quite the opposite. The women I’ve met are smiley, keen to listen, supportive and ready to help you develop and in return you do the same. Winners all round. All ready to share and encourage, everyone doing what women do best.
It’s a little like your ante-natal group has moved on, ironed some clothes and asked for your opinion on business cards instead of nappy types. Not to say it’s not serious stuff (or that making nappy decisions are not critical, as I found to the cost of my baby’s bottom a long time ago!), because in some cases it’s as serious as putting a roof over ones head. It really is.
I need a bit of luck. Send it my way please.