The Biggest Year of Our Lives

Over the past few weeks, I began to realize that I am currently smack dab in the center of the biggest year of my life. This year, I am graduating from a Big 10 University. I am getting married to the love of my life. My apartment became home to an adorable little puppy. I am solidifying lifelong friendships, making healthier decisions, and discovering more about myself than I ever knew before.

Today, I decided to dim down my web presence. I’ve read that having too many social media pages (or, at least, spending too much time on those pages) can increase the symptoms of anxiety. I like to keep life simple. So, this evening, I decided to delete my Twitter and Tumblr accounts. I’m also working on getting my reputation back from a years-old client who took my information and began publishing horrible content under my name. All in all, I’m doing pretty well. By focusing on my blogs, my official online portfolio, LinkedIn, and Facebook, I’m maintaining a fair (but private) presence. I’m proud of that and I’m excited to see where it leads.

I also have several incredible new writing opportunities. I wish I could go into detail, but all three are still under wraps until my interviews, trial periods, and initial articles are completed. Once they are, I’ll be able to share information about some of the biggest clients I’ve ever attempted to tackle.

Now that Austin is working an impressive new job, I’m able to look for clients that I really love. It takes time, patience, and no small amount of sweat to find those clients – something I’ll be outlining in my next post on The Realistic Freelancer.

It would seem, from an outside angle, that everything is going right. Unfortunately, a year packed with this many changes is far from simple. New jobs take time to pay out, and we’re coming off of three months with a much smaller income. Summertime is expensive, and there are obligations to consider. Wedding payments aren’t cheap. Peanut will be spending more time at Puppy Daycare and Puppy Kindergarten in the coming months. The guinea pigs need far more bedding now that we’ve moved them into two 13-square-foot cages.

Finances alone are possible to overcome, but that’s nothing compared to day-to-day responsibilities. Five pets, full-time school, a full-time career, two blogs, family commitments, household chores, errand running, and wedding planning take time. Austin is starting to feel the strain too, now that he’s working forty hours a week.

I keep reminding myself, though, that this is it. After this year, we’ll be married. I’ll have graduated. Austin will only be a semester away. Come 2018, our careers will be our biggest commitments. Well, that and saving as much money as possible for the future. This is a big year, but we have even bigger plans.

Life has a way of attacking you. I’ve been struggling with anxiety attacks lately, trying to find a way to overcome my fear that something has to give. Last week, I was something to see. Between too few clients and the constant worry that nothing new would come my way, I was certain we’d end up digging a hole in our emergency funds to get through May. But, as always, everything came together. Clients came around in the nick of time. I don’t know why. But they haven’t failed me yet, even when things seem tight.

Maybe that’s a sign that I made the right career choice.

I guess what I’m trying to say, to myself and to my followers, is enjoy each day you’re given. No matter how busy you are, no matter how much is on your plate, throw yourself into your life and your work. I’ve found, the more I can do that, the more I love what I do – and the happier I am.

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