So a few things going on. It’s my birthday today. It’s also National Acadian Day. I’m also going back to work for the first time in a year on Tuesday. There is not a single thing that isn’t stressing me out in regards to these things. Obviously, this leads to random thoughts that I felt like subjecting to the world. I’ve got nothing better to do at 1:30 in the morning!
Now, I know some people may expect me to be stressed about my birthday because of the whole age thing. But quite frankly getting a year older is the ‘whatevs’ part of it and it’s more like ‘FUCK YEAH CAKE AND BOOZE!’. This year there will be no cake and booze. Booze is expensive, and if you’re in the kind of economy that you can’t even suck back a few martinis and get away from real life on your day…well it sucks, okay? That, and it’s a Monday birthday. In case anyone forgot, Monday sucks and everyone forgets you on Monday birthdays. But hey, in the grand scheme of things this isn’t a big deal. Or it wouldn’t be if it weren’t for the fact that I head back to work on Tuesday.
What a glorious maternity leave it has been. Although it’s been a real struggle to provide for a family of 4 on 55% of my normal income, I am eternally grateful and very privileged to be in a country where I had the time. However, I am looking forward to making more money and I’m truly stoked to see how much my job has changed. A lot worries me though. I’ll be spending the next while saving money and heading back to school for my HRM certificate. Will I get day shifts? Will I be able to pull of school and work? What about balancing time with the family? As much as I welcome the nice break from the kids and getting my brain back into working order, it sucked watching K grow up on the weekends because I worked brutal shift work or was in school. Let me tell you, you miss a lot in those younger years and I often wonder just how much that has affected our bond. G is also a total mama’s boy and is always looking for me. What’s it going to be like when I’m not there? Can I keep my head at work? Will they still think I’m an awesome employee if I can’t work every holiday like I used to? Along with the schooling comes the question on whether or not I’ll be recognized at my current place of employment too. I don’t want to be at that front desk forever and I sure as hell want to get off the phones and do something worthwhile. What if I don’t get that professional support? Hell….what if my job has changed to the point that I hate it? It was hard going on maternity leave because I truly love that company and enjoy the people I work with, but companies grow and change. A year can be a LONG time in a corporate environment as well. What if the new person in HR hates my guts? It’s so much to process and the mix of excitement and fear has kept me up at night. I won’t know the answers to any of it until I’m knee deep into it, and I hate the unknown.
Then there’s the fact that my birthday coincides with my culture’s National Day. My birthday always ends up being a slight afterthought in the family as a result, which is fine because when I have the chance to be home for it…IT IS AWESOME. I tried last year to do a tintamarre down my street to feel better about not being there, but after several “shut the fuck up”s and having a shoe thrown at me, I decided not to do it this year. But it goes to the greater stress of it all. Even if a bunch of us stranded Acadians got together and did our thing in this city, it just wouldn’t be the same. I’m homesick. Waving my flag, wearing a cheesetastic t-shirt, and making fricot for dinner doesn’t bring my family closer to me. With my grandparents getting sick lately it has really hit me that I may never get to go back permanently and I already miss a lot. Holding onto your culture is very, VERY hard outside of your community. But hey, maybe it’s better to have the heartache and try than to let it go and have it be forgotten.
So it’s my birthday….which is overshadowed by a Monday, which is overshadowed by National Acadian Day, which is overshadowed by not being home, which is overshadowed by an uncertain landscape at work. Maybe the lesson in birthdays and getting older is that it’s just not about you anymore.
……but I still would love some cake and booze……