Driven By Fear

Greetings readers, and apologies for not being around much of late. Adjustment to the new schedule is- as expected, taking its time, and it doesn’t help that I keep adding to it. 
I got a dirty look from my wife today when I told her that the old IT job at the school wanted me to put in a few morning hours before my full time shifts kicked in at three. 
Two fifteen hour days- IT followed by PD, Three PD shifts alone, one full day of IT, and two ambulance shifts this week. 

My wife is of the opinion that I’m working too hard, that I’m doing too much- more now than when I was working three jobs. She’s shown me the bank statements, she’s assured me that things are getting a bit better.

Still, I can’t slow down. The drive to work, and to earn has nothing to do with being greedy, its because it wasn’t all that long ago that we would sweating out the end of the month between paychecks with our account balances in the single digits and creditors howling outside our door like the winter winds we’re dealing with here in the Northeast now. 
I hated it. As my wife stayed home to raise the boys, I went out and worked. The idea that I wasn’t making enough to cover our expenses and take care of things- that is devastating. I lost so very much sleep wondering exactly how we would be able to take care of simple things like groceries or gas in the car- not to mention bigger things like student loan payments, and rent.

Now, with my working full time for the first time since 2011, those days seem like they’re on the verge of ending, and I do NOT want to go back. I’m paranoid that something will go wrong, that something will happen….and that I need to do as much as I can to make damn sure that we’ll never be back to losing sleep over money- or lack thereof.

Yeah, early nights and long days are ass-kickers. Having one day a week to get things done and spend some actual quality time with my kids is difficult.

But I’m fully aware that I can’t have it easy and be comfortable at the same time. Working hard is never something I’ve been afraid of, and I know for sure that if I want to make certain that I never have an empty refrigerator, stomach, gas tank and bank account all at once…I’m going to spend the next few years working my ass off, and I’m good and ready to do it.

My own father used to work days driving a bus and working as a custodian, then drove himself to college an hour away for night classes to get his teaching degree so he could give my mother, my siblings and I a better go of things. On weekends he would split firewood or do work around the house. The man was always busy, always working, always sacrificing something so that in the long run, things would be better. He did his part. He paid his dues. Now its my turn, and for the first time in a very, very long time- it looks like I can pay them.

Literally and figuratively.  

So, even if my wife gives me grumpy face when I go out the door tomorrow for the first of two fifteen hour days, I know why I’m doing it, even if I hate it, and I don’t know if I can explain it to her. Or even if I’m explaining it very well here either.

The bright spot of the week? Since today is a holiday, and I’m working, I am entitled to an eight hour shift off….WITH PAY.
Readers…I’ve been working per diem and part time for so long that the idea that I am allowed to do nothing one day….and still get paid for it completely baffles me. I thought I was being messed with by the guy telling me that- until I heard it directly from the chief….and there’s still part of me that believes he’s yanking my chain. 
Still, I’ve taken Wednesday off this week. It’ll be a good break between the fifteen hour days of Tuesday and Thursday, and I literally have NOTHING on the schedule. I’m toying with taking The Narrator to the movies, or- if it’s warmed up even a little bit, spending a good amount of time outside with the cabin-fever ridden little rascal who is on vacation for President’s week.

I just hope that my quest for security doesn’t put me on a collision course with an epic burn out, but time will tell…and if you stick around, you’ll come along for the ride

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One thought on “Driven By Fear

  1. You can do it!!! Glad you are blogging about it too!!! You explained it beautifully here and I’m certain your wife will understand when you explain it to her that way. It’s not about QUANTITY of time but QUALITY time you spend with your wife and children!!! (Cliched I know.. Sorry… But it’s the truth!!). You are determined and you are driven!! Everything will fall into place and you and your family will thrive!!!

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