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Fuck Politeness

This is a revolution, not a public relations movement

This just in: when you grow up in working class areas and you get knocked up at nineteen with no employment experience beyond K-Mart, and without having finished your degree, your whole life becomes a stressful balancing act:

How to put food on the table when you’ve got a tiny baby and no partner to help manage child care responsibilities?

How to convince people to employ you on the basis of ‘But I’m awesome, promise’? (I did find that people interviewing for shitty retail/telemarketing  jobs were inordinately snooty, sneering at HSC marks, being arch about the difference between Customer Sales K-Mart style and the apparently infinitely superior experience required to travel an hour each day to work at the fucking Pine Warehouse).

How to get an education when you feel you ‘should’ just stack shelves forever if it pays?

How to model a brave and joyous life to your child when you feel like you’ll never get anywhere, and no one wants to let you prove yourself?

How to pay the bills on your shitty shitty income?

How to (when you finally achieve graduation in the Arts component of Arts/Law) to accept giving up the option of beginning Honours when you were told you had the ability to continue to postgraduate studies ‘and beyond’ because the government changed its mind and decided your education was not ‘participation’ enough in society?

Over the years the questions have changed, from laying awake shifting numbers in your head ‘If I wait to pay the electricity til NEXT fortnight, I can probably afford to get a new ventolin for miniFP’ etc, to ‘If I drop back in days at work to go part time and finish the degree quicker, will I be able to pay my bills, will I manage, will I get more into debt, will it be worth it, will it work out, why am I doing this, is it the right thing to do, what if I can’t afford it’?

But the uncertainty, the long hours of dissecting all possible ramifications of a plethora of interconnected decisions, the background fear that you’ll fuck it up and lose everything, the guilt (you feel like it’s hard because you’re not doing well enough), the difficulty in weighing up the pros and cons, the sadness at your child missing out, at your constant exhaustion; and the lack of an end in sight, well that’s familiar from the last twelve years.

So when it’s running in the background, as it is when you are reassessing in big ways again (I’m dropping back from fulltime work to three days a week so I can finish study quicker and have time for my son and potentially some freaking headspace and with longer term goals in mind) it can make for a pervading sense of anxiety that leaves you on edge and snappy.

Add to that that I haven’t had a fucking holiday since Christmas, and I’m pretty damned burned out/on edge.


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