Fear of Starting

Am I too old to start a blog?

My view from the bluff-St. Paul

In 2016, I was fired from my job. I had worked at this organization for almost three years and had put a lot of myself into it. It was a “big” job: I felt important, I was recognized in my community, and we were doing important things, I thought. I was devastated.

But,

I picked myself up, licked my wounds, and began to look for another “big” job. Maybe this would be the best thing that ever happened to me, right?

Spoiler: It wasn’t.

No one would hire me. I sent dozens of resumes and cover letters and applications in – to vast radio silence.  Eventually, a former colleague of mine posted a part time job for which I got an interview and she hired me. Things were going great for a while.

But in November of 2017, I had a mental health crisis.  My husband, therapist, and I decided I should go to a hospital mental health program. I went back to work in December but I was forced to quit my job in February for health reasons.

In April, I had spine surgery and then six weeks of recovery.

Since then I haven’t looked intensely for a new job, partially because my family’s financial situation improved and partially I wasn’t sure I wanted the same kind of work anymore.

As it turns out, not making money, not doing work, has been challenging for me. I never put much stock in myself as a home-maker – I hate doing household chore, don’t do them well, and don’t keep up with it to boot. I put a lot of my sense of self into working. Aside from maternity leave, there have been very few breaks in my employment history as far back as high school.

Until the year I was fired.

My self-esteem plummeted those two years and I had to search for things to look forward to in order to get to the next day. Sometimes all I could come up with was my morning coffee. In the days leading up to my partial hospitalization, I took up a random craft project I had started several years ago. I needed something right in front of my face to focus on. Small finite tasks I could do and complete and see something build from it. I began to feel better.

After the program I continued. Then I remembered I had been big into crafts in junior high, and as a young adult. I had dabbled in paper making in my twenties and knitted in my thirties. All these things helped me deal with the struggles with self-esteem, anxiety, and depression. I realized I needed to do, to make. So, I began to craft in earnest.

Now I am working with making books, altered book art, cross stitch and embroidery. I also decided to get back to writing. I had long wanted to write but developed a strained relationship with it after college.

So here I am. Crafting, writing, making. I hope that my experiences resonate with you, or give you comfort, or perhaps someone to laugh with or at as you struggle with anxiety, stress, depression, or simple boredom.

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