Friday, January 28, 2011

Life, Work, Family, Friends

I can't sleep. That has become a reoccurring theme lately. Honestly I think I need to take my cafeine consumption down a notch or two or three. But it's been ages since I blogged so what better to do while I lay here awake?

2010 was a crazy year, and 2011 is shaping up to be a much calmer one (knock on wood). 

A couple months ago I accepted a job offer for a full time salaried position with the company that nearly went out of business at the end of June. The whole ordeal with the layoff and everything that followed was possibly the most uncertain and trying time of my life. It is not something that I would ever want to re-live, but at the same time it's an experience I would no sooner give up. I learned some important lessons about financial security and learned a lot about myself, my skills, my weaknesses, how important family and friends are, etc (big shout-of to those who bailed us out and/or gave us moral support (you know who you are)). I ended up working two full-time jobs for 3 grueling months; but working those two jobs gave us the opportunity to fix some financial missteps we made as a young married couple. Getting back to the job offer; it was a hard decision to make and I was terrified that I might be making a mistake. A few months later I can honestly say that I have no regrets. I am happier at work than I have ever been. In a lot of ways I am working my "dream-job" if there is such a thing.

A couple days ago I posted on Facebook saying that I was happier than I'd ever been. I thought I should add to that. I don't have everything I want in life. There are a lot of things I would change if given the chance, but I don't think about those things. I have a lot of meaningful things in my life to be happy about, and that is what matters to me.

The next big question mark on the horizon is taxes. Working as a contractor really complicates the tax situation. We  set aside a lot of money to cover taxes on that income; I just hope it's enough. We're waiting on carolyn's W2 from Uncle Sam before we can see what the damage is going to be. I keep hoping that we will owe significantly less than we have saved so that we can take some of that money and put it to good use, but I'm not getting my hopes up too far. What I'd really love to do is take that money and use it as a down payment on a second car, but that would be undermining everything I thought I learned about financial stability.

Since my employment situation has settled down again I'm back in school. I'm taking some more philosophy courses and really enjoying it a lot. I think I finally found the right major, (too bad it's more or less worthless in terms of career advancement). I am really enjoying it but it's also a big time commitment so I'll be glad when it's over. So far this semester I haven't really had any work due, and that's starting to worry me like it's all going to come crashing down on me in a couple of weeks. I keep telling myself that I need to sit down and map out the semester, but I have yet to ever accomplish that in past semesters so why should this one be any different? Maybe I'll just let all those 12 page papers sneak up on me overnight :/

My last thought for the night (which has now turned into morning) is that I feel like I'm drifting away from my friends. It's hard to find time with my schedule, but I feel like it's something more than time pulling me away. I actually just don't feel a closeness that I used to feel, but I don't know what's changed. I've been thinking a lot about this recently and I've come to feel like I don't have any really close friend-friends anymore. I've never been the kind of person to seek out a lot of friends but I've usually kept at least a few close friends around. That's not to say that I don't have some great friends and family, but I find myself feeling (maybe for the first time in my life) like I need to foster some stronger friendships; the kinds of friend that would take a bullet for me.