Thursday, 21 October 2010

Who am I?

Hello to anyone who has found me here - I used to be the tired Mummy at but I decided that I needed a fresh start with blogging and have moved house to get some inspiration and drive going again. A quick update for anyone who doesn't know me:

I had my first child (Ben) in 2007, I went back to work and quickly got pregnant again. Son number 2 (Ciaran) came along in 2009 (exactly two months before Ben's second Birthday) so I can proudly say I survived the two under two stage. I decided that I couldn't face going back to work after all the changes that had been made while I'd been away and jacked in an exciting career as a school appeals clerk to be a stay at home Mum. Two months later I wondered if I had made a terrible mistake and whether I would ever walk around Tescos without being terrified of overspending again; at this point a lovely friend who I worked with before I had Ben and Ciaran became the Committee Services Manager at one of the new councils created in our area, she needed someone to come for 6 months and help with Committee work - woo hoo! Back in the world of work without having to search for a job.

As my contract was drawing to an end I started applying for jobs. Summer of 2010 was not a good time to be looking for a new job in the public sector and I went for three jobs; one paid a lot less than I got at the Council, the second was a little less than I got at the Council and the third was a long shot that would pay me more money and allow me to work less hours (it was one of those jobs that you would kick yourself for not at least trying). I gritted my teeth and went to my first interview as an administrator in a local Uni. The salary was low, it had to be full time (no room for negotiation as the previous postholder was leaving as they couldn't accomodate her being a part timer) and I would have to move the kids to a cheaper nursery. I went to the interview: I made a good connection with the people, talked about my experience of setting up admin systems and completely failed to get the job. They interviewed 8 people and had around 50 applications.

I can't say I wasn't scared. We were talking about an 8K drop in my full time salary and I still couldn't get the job. The next interview was for the dream job. Not a hope in hell. I went along (wearing my favourite Betty Jackson Black dress) smiled and talked and left thinking that it was the kind of job I would love but it was probably out of my league. Full time motherhood and shelf stacking in the evenings beckoned. We talked about me seeing if I could get some work as a teaching assistant at a local school, if it was just a couple of mornings a week my Mum would look after the boys. Sadly I wasn't even able to do that. I had not done a term or so of voluntary experience. This was looking bleak...

Then I got the phone call I didn't expect. I was about the leave the house for interview number 3 when I was offered my dream job. I am now Clerk to the Corporation for a local College. Despite 5 years committee experience in local government it's a steep learning curve. In the past if I thought a standing order or governance procedure should be changed I suggested it to my boss, who discussed it with her boss and the Assistant Director. Now I had sole responsibility for this and was expected to be the one who told Directors that no - they couldn't legally do it that way, they had to get Board permission first and it would have to be at a proper board meeting - no wooly email permission thank you very much!

I started a month ago and am learning fast. I'm getting to grips with the law around the FE area but learning to behave in a more senior way is going to take me a while. I am a 0.7 FTE (ha ha ha) and in theory do 26 hours a week (cynical laugh). This week I've put in 34 hours and will be working over the weekend. However, I like hard work, would hate to be twiddling my thumbs and in the current economic climate am just pleased to have a job.

Child care is marvellously sorted - two days with my Mum, two days at the marvellous Fordfield at Ruxox nursery and Fridays with me. My husband works full time in local government as a sustainable transport officer (no I don't know what it means but it sounds complicated) and is recovering from the shock of having to deal with hyper, over tired kids after nursery when I have late meetings.

In a year we've gone from agreeing to me jacking in my career to be a stay at home Mum to trying to fit kids and our lives around both of us now having challenging careers and challenging children - can we do it without going nuts? Can DH cope with all the studying he's doing at work and the dreaded cuts? Can I lose the stress induced spare tyre I'm carrying (even Betty Jackson can't quite hide it!) let alone get back to goal weight? Can I get through a week without appearing to be a airhead at work? Will I ever get together enough to take Ben out of a nappy at night and will Ciaran ever stop laughing at being told off? Stay with me and we'll find out...

PS - If you want to read old history and lot of baby led weaning stuff hop over to my old blog and trawl through the archives!

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