My life inbetween
I am an inbetweener. I know I’ve told you about my drug addled youth, and my far-from-perfect early twenties, but what about the stuff that mattered? What about all the stuff in between that I haven’t really mentioned much about? You know, the stuff that actually mattered. Because even now, my life is far from perfect. I’d love to think it was, but hidden within my large smile and positive outlook is a river, no a sea of problems and regret.
I may talk a great game but I promise you that my shit stinks just as bad as yours. My problems are frequent and daily, but my positive outlook on life helps me deal with them that little better than if I were depressed. That and I rarely discuss them. You don’t want to hear about my problems. What sort of motivation would that be for you, right?
So what’s been happening in the life of Raymond? Bar giving up alcohol, meeting a lovely woman, having a son, getting some hobbies, educating myself and taking to the web waves, what else have I done? What mistakes have I made? What’s the true nitty gritty been like?
My first venture into anything different than what I had been doing for a lifetime was tutoring older adults with computers. Society was noticing a trend by now that the internet and computers had taken a large spike upwards in social trends and those that thought the whole hype would amount to nothing were being left behind. So I created and managed free courses for these people to attend and get educated. This was my first love, and it was my first brush with actual responsibility in the workplace.
The best thing with these courses was that I had ultimate control over what was taught and what was learned. After all, it was me that designed them and made sure that everyone was hitting their targets and on time. The length of these courses lasted for six weeks, and what I prided myself on was that they didn’t just learn the bog standard word processing, excel rubbish. I taught them how to functionally navigate the web. Fill in forms, create a document and search google. Because I had an idea where the internet was heading. Thankfully I was spot on. As we sit here, in 2016, with the internet at the forefront of practically everything.
These courses were proving to be quite a bit successful, and me being me thought it was time to make a stand and try for something better. After all, I was already effectively managing my own courses.
I applied for a part-time job as an active tutor at adult education, teaching adults text processing. And although I could teach it with my eyes closed with my hands tied behind my back it was probably a big mistake to even attempt this.
At my interview I was informed that the definition of “adult” umbrellas 16-year-olds and upwards, and whilst I thought that was a great idea because the kids in my class would find a natural respect and order in the chain to the adults, what actually transpired was something quite different. I was given a class entirely made up of sixteen to nineteen-year-olds.
I’ve always had a can-do attitude towards work but it was hard seeing a positive end to what I clearly hadn’t trained for, and working with teenagers has always seemed a bit threatening to me. Without going into further detail it’s safe to say that my position in adult education tanked big style and I was left feeling rather worthless in my teaching abilities. I can remember Natalie’s description when I had finished my first day is that I walked out looking like a “scared bunny!”
Yeah, that’s an adequate description.
Yet I’m not one to let defeat get me down. If I’ve learned anything from people it’s to get up when I’ve been knocked back. So I continued with my other job which slowly built my confidence back in my teaching abilities whilst I had my eye on other places.
And then I was made redundant. Sucks for me but it’s what happened. And around about that time my Son was born, so double sucks.
Luckily I had an almost arrogant air around me on my abilities to plough ahead with my work and to be successful. But, unfortunately, around the same time Natalie became really unwell too, and that left me with most of that winter and summer with Alex. Life was tough around then, raising a child, having a sick wife and trying to maintain an income. It was hard because we had none.
The little that was made wasn’t enough to survive on. I had managed to secure a few teaching contracts here and there, but it definitely wasn’t enough to live anywhere within our means. So I had to sit and wait it out. Lucky we had family to lean on. If we didn’t, we’d have been on the streets I have no doubt on that.
Whilst I waited I took to University and other things. I learned. I learned about all sorts, read books, completed courses and achieved quite awesome learning skills. It was a tough, yet inspirational two years, that weren’t without their massive pitfalls. But in the end, I landed an awesome job as a Project Coordinator.
And there I learned to let go of my ego. To focus on the right things and stop worrying about the little things. Or the things that I couldn’t change. Yeah, I expect that place saved my life in one way or another. Because if it weren’t for them I wouldn’t be here, writing to you guys. I wouldn’t have the focus or the drive to suceed. None of that.
I learned to think positive there. That place was great.
And then, again I was made redundant. Times are hard, governments are tight-fisted with their money.
So I took to the web-waves and here I sit, talking to you guys through my life experiences! I hope you enjoy 🙂