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The (My) Reality Of Every Day Life, Even When FI (Financially Independent)!

You may have noticed (or not) but I took another break from blogging and social media back in November, and got back towards the end of January. I find I get way too wrapped up with everything blogging if I don’t take regular breaks. And this time I had so much going on, it took longer to get back to it. Because YES, even when you are Financially Independent , you still have to deal with the reality of every day life! So what was going on this time?

Related post: Beware! Financially Independence Is Not All It’s Cracked Up to be!

And I know! It feels like I am always on break, doesn’t it? But I do work publish posts in between:)

Related post: Another Blogging Break, Again!

My Son’s Health & The Many Appointments!

My son started suffering from major migraines in November and it went on for a few weeks. It was getting real bad so I started worrying about his health. After a visit to the doctor’s, she ordered some tests but thought it was probably due to stress. At 17? Well I guess stress can come from various sources and his body was reacting to it. (Must have been all that pressure I put on him with the University applications). After going to several physio & acupuncture appointments, he was back to normal. It’s crazy what acupuncture can do!

But during the same time period, I found out he had a growth on the back of his tongue, the doctor didn’t know what it was, the dentist didn’t know either so he referred us to an oral surgeon who … had not clue either! But at least he sent us for an MRI (a few days ago). It could be nothing, or it could be something, we should get the results very soon.

Mental Health

My mental state wasn’t good, it was a very tough few months. Christmas was the five year anniversary of my husband’s death and this year seemed like one of the toughest.  His birthday was in early November and until Christmas, the entire period was extremely difficult to deal with. Things have settled down since and I feel better now.

Related post: Do The What Ifs And Whys Ever Stop When You Lose A Loved One To Suicide?

(Questioning My) Parenting (Skills)

The last few months of 2018 were more challenging dealing with my kids (older kids), I know part of the issue is that I wasn’t in the right frame of mind in the first place. Like “they” say, take care of yourself first before you try to take care of others. It applies to parents too.

Frustrated With My Oldest Daughter

I was so frustrated with my oldest one because she doesn’t seem to have a clear idea of what she wants to do yet and I was worried. I think I envisioned her doing things I always wanted to do and it affected my judgment.  She is a good kid and she is working hard. She needs time to figure out what she wants and I need to take a step back and respect the fact that she is not me! Easier said than done.

Middle Child Keeps Challenging The Rules

My middle child (daughter) has been going thru a roller coast of emotions and can get pretty nasty with me at times. Once again it is tough when you are already going thru a lot yourself. She is always pushing the limits and it is sometimes taken a toll on me. She is becoming an adult and doesn’t agree with all our rules (actually, mostly my partner’s rules).

Lack Of Focus From My Youngest

My son was getting side tracked a lot at the end of 2018, Grade 12, right when he needs to apply to University, the most critical year! I felt like I wasn’t doing the right things to get him back on track. But I must have done something right since because he is now 150% focused again.

Am I A Bad Parent?

I started questioning my parenting skills, am I doing something wrong? Am I a bad parent? Well I don’t do everything right but I don’t think I qualify as a bad parent (or I hope anyway).

I came to the conclusion that while I may not win the parent single mom of the year award , I am not doing that bad. My kids are doing ok even if they are not doing everything I expect them to do. I am definitely not perfect at it and I don’t have all the answers, but I try my best.

I do, however, have to remind myself that my kids don’t necessarily want the things I want for them and it’s ok.

Was I Right To Hire An Employment Lawyer?

With the monthly lawyer’s bills adding up and no end in sight, I was questioning my decision to hire the employment lawyer. It was really stressing me out plus the uncertainty about work was really getting to me.  But it all worked out by the end of December and I am glad it was so worth it at the end. You just never know.

Office Relocation

The company relocated us to a temporary office in January so there was a lot of planning and work to do. We were losing all our local IT support including our server and any space to store files.

Blended Family

Being in a blended family is not always easy. It was even more challenging toward the end of the year. I noticed the more my kids think about their dad, the tougher it gets. It affects the way they are with my partner and not usually in a good way. But even without that , our blended family is a lot of work!

I feel like a full time referee, not always fun.

Source: giphy.com

Finding My Purpose (One Of Them)

I always wanted to volunteer but never felt like I had the time, between full time work and my kids. Now that they are older, I feel it is a good time to finally start. I came across an amazing opportunity back in November and attended a 3 hours information session in December, submitted a full application (including police check and references) and did a 1 hour interview in January.  My application was accepted and I am now finalizing my required 25 hours on line training. When done, I will then go to the orientation session. I am almost there! The work involves volunteering in a palliative care unit for children. I am very excited about the opportunity.

Home Sick

I spent a lot of time on the phone with my sister (and my brothers). Thank you “WhatsApp” for the free international calls! She was supposed to spend Christmas with us but she got really sick before the holidays and we agreed she wasn’t well enough to travel internationally. She was diagnosed with skin cancer a year ago and her new treatment wasn’t working very well. They switched it back and she is feeling much better now. Next year, I may try to go there (France) with the kids but more difficult to schedule as they get older.

Not always easy to be far from our loved ones.

Landlord’s Business

It wasn’t that bad but the fact that one of my tenants is moving out at the end of February was stressing me out. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to sale or try to rent again. Looking for tenants in the middle of winter, including Christmas was not very appealing to me. Remember my goal is to own the three townhouses until I turn 55, which is coming very quickly by the way! Even so I did the very minimum, it was overwhelming me just to think about it.

(Signs Of) Aging

At almost 52, I am not old yet! But I can feel some of the physical changes associated with aging. I get tired much faster and getting up at 5:30 is not as easy anymore. I am still in great good shape but I must be getting thru a physical milestone and it’s scaring me a little. What? Did you say menopause?? Is it just downhill from here?

As a side note, have you ever seen Nancy Pelosi in action? (Disclaimer: nothing to do with politics at all, just her as a woman) Guess how old she is? She is a 78 year old mother of FIVE and a grandmother!  How inspiring to see a woman at that age being so active (regardless of your political views) and looking pretty damn good.

How about Jane Fonda? Not bad for 81!

Wrapping Up

As you can see, even being  financially Independent I still deal with the reality of everyday life, but at least I don’t have to worry as much about money! (But I still do anyway).

How about you? Do you feel you are getting older? Do you always worry about your kid(s) even as they become adults? Have you ever been part of a blended family? How was it?

26 thoughts on “The (My) Reality Of Every Day Life, Even When FI (Financially Independent)!

  1. life is hard sometimes, isn’t it? even without ever having kids stuff can get complicated. i’m 51 in a few weeks but still feel pretty good. it must be a miracle with this lifestyle.

  2. I loved this post Caroline! Not because you had some tough stuff to deal with, but because I can relate. Life just sucks sometimes. 🙁

    But you somehow made me LOL multiple times through this post! Please, whatever you do, keep blogging! I love your stories. 🙂

    1. Hi again—I’m kind of an idiot and wrote my comment after only quickly skimming your post. 🤦

      I somehow got humor from some of the things you said on my first read. But when I read it again more thoroughly, I want to take back that part of my comment.

      Sorry if it sounded insensitive. You’ve had a lot of serious stuff going on, and I totally didn’t mean to minimize it.

      I’ll stop blubbering now and will just send you a big virtual hug. 🤗

      1. You are definitely not an idiot and didn’t come across as insensitive at all, I do try to add some humour to my post and glad you could see that. Life is not all black and white. Even in the darkest moment, you can try to laugh, or at least smile
        Cheers

    2. Thank you! Sometimes I think I must sound like such a whiner. But really I just want to share with people how you can have your shit together (at least I think I do) and still deal with crap on a daily basis.
      And I do try to add a little humour because life is too short.

  3. Sorry to hear you’re going through all this Caroline. I think with your reflection on parenting, it’s a good thing you are doing a self-analysis on your parenting skills and see what you can do better. It shows that you are definitely not a bad parent by being aware of your actions and try to correct it. We all can learn by experience.

    1. Hi Kris, yes that the best we can do as parents. Learn by experience.
      But you will also find out (with your second one on the way:)) is that whatever works for number 1 may not work for number 2.

  4. I second what Chrissy said about continuing to blog. Your blog posts and sense of humour are unique. Aside from that, thanks for the honest post, Caroline. I am sorry to hear about your son and hope the test results turn out that it’s nothing. It’s good to hear your mental state has improved recently. Mental health is really important! I am not in a position to say anything about your parenting but I’m sure you’re doing a good job because you care. Cool news about finding your purpose! And I have been thinking about age myself lately since I have a bday coming up soon. I guess life just never stops coming. I have been embracing the idea that you can never truly get everything under control. I find the idea of continuous chaos to be somewhat comforting and it has been helping me get through the reality of everyday life. Thanks for the read, Caroline! Enjoy your weekend!

    1. Hi Graham, you have a birthday coming up? Big milestone?
      Totally agree, I don’t think you can ever get everything under control and health is definitely the big one.
      As a side note about blogging, you do realize with those kinds of comments, I will expect you to read my blog for as long as I keep blogging?
      Cheers

      1. Yeah my birthday is coming up in April! I will be 33 😬. I don’t talk about it much because I feel behind for my age lol. Agreed that health is a big one. I can already tell that it needs to be more of a priority now than it was in my twenties. And haha! I have no problems with your expectation that I will continue reading your blog. I always enjoy reading. Enjoy your Saturday, Caroline!

        1. Awww 33:) Why would you feel behind for your age? What are you comparing yourself to? Remember you are not supposed to make comparisons, it’s the thief of joy! From where I stand, you are doing just fine! Keep it up.

  5. Hi Caroline, yeah, as you mentioned, life is hard many times. You are not alone. When kids grow up, we think it will be less worries. Actually it is bigger worries, like their career, health, and future. About aging, I’m 53 now. During the last couple of years, I can feel it physically, which is not fun. Yeah, Nancy Pelosi doesn’t look like 78, good for her.

    Many people (including me) may not talk much about their life challenges, but it doesn’t mean everything is rosy. I hope your son is doing fine health wise. You take care.

    1. Hi Helen, thanks for confirming I am not the only crazy parent who still worries about her kids as they get older. I thought it would get easier!
      Sounds like physically we are in the same boat, so many changes after 50! Maybe it stops at 54?:)
      We all do have our daily life challenges and I do think it is important to share them, not to whine but to let others know that it is ok and life is not always perfect, even if you are financially independent.
      Have a great week-end. Cheers

  6. Oh gosh, palliative care unit for children, I could not do that, good for you for doing that, your bright personality will definitely brighten some sick kid’s days.

    Sorry to hear you are having a tough time, I think raising 3 children on your own and them being young adults is definitely a very difficult time!

    Acupuncture really is amazing- it helped my wrist pain that i had for 8 months (mommy wrist). That’s great you were able to get an MRI so quickly for your son!!

    1. Hi Gym, well I don’t know about my bright personality, doesn’t always feel that bright!:)

      I think the volunteer opportunity is definitely going to be a challenge. Some of the training was pretty tough. I am committing to one year for now and we will see how it goes. If I can’t do it, then they can move me to an administrative volunteer job for the remaining of the term. I already asked.

      Raising children in general is a tough job, whether you are a single parent or not. Sometimes it is just tougher than others:) I am sure you already experienced some of it.

      For the MRI, we were lucky because my son is still under 18 so we could go to CHEO and it is faster. But it still took almost 3 months. I should get the results this week. I assume if I didn’t get a call yet, it’s probably good news.
      Cheers

  7. You’re doing great, mama! Life can be such a slog sometimes and I’m glad that you’re taking good care of your and your family’s physical and mental health. I really enjoy your posts and hope that you can keep up with it when you’re able.

    Even though I imagine your volunteer work will be emotionally taxing, I think it will help you so much. I volunteer with Meals on Wheels and am building a website for another group and it’s so good for my mental health. Volunteering gives you a sense of purpose and connects you to something greater than yourself. I can’t wait to hear about all of the great things you’re doing and sending you an e-hug for things to be less stressful soon!

    1. Thanks Bec, you are always so kind:)
      Do you deliver meals or help with the prep? I was considering volunteering with Shepherds of Good Hope for a while but then this came up and working with kids was definitely my preference.
      I do hope it gives me a sense of purpose, I want to give back and feel part of something greater.

      1. I help with the prep. It’s such a popular position that I’m only on an as-needed basis when people are on vacation or sick, so I’m looking forward to the summer when they need me more and really hoping that a regular slot eventually opens up.

        I honestly think volunteering is one of the most selfish things you can do. I get so much more out of it than I could possibly give, and I hope that it’s a really positive experience for you. Keep us up to date!

  8. Yes, you are a good parent! If you weren’t, you wouldn’t be asking that. Sometimes we question ourselves the most when we care the deepest.

    I try to keep a young attitude, that’s probably what Jane Fonda & Nancy Pelosi do, too, lol. Yoga keeps me flexible & helps me to deal more effectively with stress. But I have noticed it’s a lot harder to lose weight now . . .

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