Well. What a strange few weeks it has been.
I have been freelance for twenty-five days. Not long – but I’ve learnt a lot so far. Making the jump was something that I thought long and hard over and tormented myself with: I knew what I wanted to do, I was just too scared to do it. It’s not a decision to be taken lightly and I had to think carefully about my finances and the implications that being self-employed will have on my life. I now can’t get a mortgage for at least three years, and I’ll struggle to get into a rental agreement without paying six months up front as well as a deposit, or supplying years of financial statements that I don’t yet have. I have financial commitments every month that I’m not certain that I will meet. Sick days aren’t a thing – I attended a client meeting on three hours’ sleep last week due to illness – and if I’m not working, I’m thinking about working. I have to learn about tax.
This isn’t a negative post. This is a post about freedom, choice, and control.
I decided that my life wasn’t what I wanted it to be and that, actually, I didn’t have to get up early every weekday to do a job I don’t like and line the pockets of other people. Being female, I felt that there would come a point in my life at which I’d be likely to make the decision to leave my job to have a baby – I might go back into that job, I might not. Now, at twenty-two, I have the opportunity to build a stable, fulfilling career before I get to that point. I felt that this time, right now, was when I had to really go for it. I wanted to make a successful career and earn good money whilst I had the chance of being able to do so without the commitments of having a family. I knew that, if I didn’t do it now, I’d only wish I had later. I’m not saying that I’m a time bomb – that once I have a child, that’s it – I’m just saying that this is the best point in my life to take the risk that I’ve taken – and I’m glad that I did.
Managing my own schedule is something that I find very rewarding. This morning I slept in because I’m still unwell (it’s been two weeks, I think that’s enough now!?), accepting that a consequence of this may be working into the evening or increasing tomorrow’s workload. But I had the choice. I can write blog posts when I want – albeit that I haven’t done so because I’ve had no ideas whatsoever lately. But I got an idea, and I could write about it. I can take photos for my blog and social media channels whilst it’s still light, and then work later on, whilst it’s dark. I can pick my boyfriend up when his car fails its MOT. I can be around, be present, and make the choice of how I want to spend my day – every single day.
I’m not a risk-taker and I never have been, but I hope this one pays off. I had been attending interviews and being asked to come back, but I just wasn’t bothered. It wasn’t until my Dad said, “Hannah, you don’t want any of these jobs, do you?” that I realised I was just going with the flow because I needed to secure an income before I quit my job. All I’d have done was taken another job I didn’t really want and been stuck in another rut in three month’s time. “What have you got to lose?” he said, and here I am. Thanks, Dad. Can I borrow some money?