Taking Steps To Go Back To Work After A Long Break - SAHG Edition

February 28, 2020


I went to see a social worker last week, to help with job applications. I really want to start working this year. It's been on my mind for a long time and even though I'm scared shitless I need change. This might sound a little odd but I want to pay bills. I want to take responsibility and I want to be financially independent. I want to have colleagues and I want to be successful in a work environment. I know I can do it, I've always liked working but since it's been a while that I've actively looked for a job, I've asked for help at the local general welfare center. Throwing myself into job interviews just didn't seem the right step for me to take. I've opted for something a little more gentle and I sincerely hope they can help me. I've had a hard time finding resources for women like me, who stayed home not because of children or because of a disability but because life happened and a time off was necessary.

I never registered as unemployed or applied for unemployment benefits because I wanted people to leave me alone. All of that will now slowly change, I registered as a job seeker yesterday and I have an appointment at the welfare center again tomorrow. I'm not sure what they will say but from having gone there one other time, about 5 years ago, I assume I will have to tell my story again. I've been labeled as a housewife rather often lately and while that might be what I am, I've never liked that word. More often than not, people have used the term to express their internalised misogyny and patriarchal views of society. They project their low self esteem, trauma, deeply rooted issues with their mother and like to think housewives do absolutely nothing other than cleaning, which is not what many of us at home actually do. Oh wait, you're also supposed to dread turning 30, especially as a woman. Side note: Pretty sure this narrative was made up by boomers who realised they probably should have gone to therapy and refused, so decided to be miserable instead and blame their children, their parents and every walking woman on the planet. There you go!

I ran my own Youtube channel for 4 years reaching 8k subscribers and a total of 1 million views, I have my blog, a registered domain, I've done many collaborations with international brands, I've done pretty well for myself. I realised I like the blogger world because I could rely on the fact that most opportunities would make it into my inbox, now I have to put myself out there again, in person. To me, social media is easy because everything is either written, published with a photo or video, carefully curated and produced in a controlled environment. It's an amazing universe for introverts like myself, who like to put themselves out there in the comfort of their own home but I'm ready to be seen, to let go of the narrative that I've created for myself for so many years and bloom, out of my comfort zone.

Going back to work after a long break will be challenging, I'm aware. I don't expect things to be handed to me. I've been thinking about signing up to courses to learn new skills. At first I thought: no I just want to work! However, if I want to prepare myself in the best way that I can, I think it will be necessary. I've noticed that one of the questions I've been asked the most is what I'd like to do. A creative role would be ideal, one where I can keep writing and work on online content, participate in exciting projects, preferably part time. We'll see what happens. I'm not going to lie, I'm terrified of ending up in a customer service job, not because I would be bad at it but because of the amount of people I'd see in a day. I'm already overwhelmed by being confronted with my own brain. It just keeps thinking. A lot.

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