For the better part of my working life, I wished to not be working. Don’t read me wrong, I’m not a layabout (except when I am, which is sometimes because I friggin’ love naps). I need purpose and action, it’s hard for me to do nothing for too long…which is kind of where I’m at right now. I hesitate to complain, working at home and freedom throughout the day is usually exactly what’s at the finish line of my brain. However, I don’t have much freelance work to do and the whole reason for being home all day, was to do freelance work.
Last week I clocked I think 18 working hours. I won’t get into pay or anything like that, let’s say that was alright, but it didn’t keep me busy for more than three days out of five. The other two were taken up with unpacking, collapsing boxes, arranging and rearranging the kitchen, running errands, etc. Again: I’m not complaining about that bit because I loved being able to run around during the day when most people were not on the roads or in the stores and make real headway getting the new place in order. That’s not really the point, though.
I need to feel like I have something going on that isn’t housework, since housework needs to always happen, particularly after a move. It feels good to get my hands dirty with design work. I throw my earphones in, put a playlist on, and have at it. Hours go by, I don’t even realize that it’s quitting time until either my stomach or my butt tells me so and I like it. Love it, maybe. But right now, the well is if not dry, at least so deep I can barely see the water in it and my boss goes radio silent sometimes for days at a time. Our agreement before I left my job was that he’d give me x amount of hours per week to a) keep me working on whatever they (urgently, according to him) need and b) make not working freelance financially viable for the summer. After much discussion, we decided against paying for insurance for the handful of months I’d be freelancing, and pray for health and safety (thanks, America!), but we still have to pay rent and bills. Our handshake was that I’d stay on doing freelance through the summer and not start seriously job shopping until fall, which would ostensibly help both of us during the transition. As of today, Thursday, I’ve done three hours of work this week. I sent my boss a chat an hour ago asking for more work and after a basic response of, “I’m sorry/I’m really busy/I’m working on it” finally gave me the option of working on a project he allotted 12 hours’ pay to. Uh, yes. Hello, yes. Why did I have to pull that out of him?
So now the question is: Do I stick the freelancing out through August as planned, or do I gear up for the harder conversation that may or may not involve a professional boundary of something like, more work by July or I find a real job. A risky move, but not as risky as working less than the agreed-upon hours per week, indeed.
It makes me cranky to be bored or aimless and while there are other hobby-type things I could/should be doing, or geez, even sit in the sun and read a book or wander around Target noting the things we still need to set up house, that’s not what I want. I want to work. If I don’t work, I don’t enjoy my leisure time because I haven’t earned it.