I can’t believe we’re about to enter a new decade. It feels unreal. How is it 10 years since 2010?
It’s not an exaggeration to say that I was a completely different person back then. Ten years younger, in a completely different phase of my life. I was living away from where I grew up, not that long out of university, in a training scheme I was starting to hate (I work in the NHS). At that point I was single and spending what free time I had with a group of friends who are now friends for life, even if we don’t see each other often enough. I was in a moderate amount of debt, and working very long and arduous hours. In general I was a bit miserable!
Fast forward to now. I changed speciality (and though still busy I’m not miserable at work anymore), have moved back to my home town, am married and have just had a son. Our house is 50% paid off and are in a much better financial situation. I see less of those friends, but the time we do manage to carve out is wonderful.
I suppose my point is that in 2010 I couldn’t have planned for, or foreseen, the changes that would have happened to get us to this point here. Don’t get me wrong, in my bones I knew I would get married and have children, that was a given. Sounds daft but it’s true. But I’m lucky to have gotten here, and be happy.
So what do I want from 2020? And the Twenties? Given how far we are from where we were in 2010, it’s impossible to plan or even imagine where we’ll be in ten years time. But there are some general aims that I’ve been mulling over.
I’m currently on maternity leave, having had our little boy in April, and, as I mentioned in our last post, he’s completely changed our life and our outlook. I no longer want to be a slave to work (did I ever, really??), and desperately want to prioritise him when planning out our lives now. How this will look in the long term I’m not sure, but I have so many ideas percolating. I could leave my work and buy a farm to live a self sufficient lifestyle, or create a portfolio career and fit it in around his schedule, or even just work out of hours to allow me to do school drop off and pick up. So many options that I’m almost paralysed with indecision.
There are, however, some over-arching themes:
- Financial independence
- Flexibility to fit work around childcare
- Working towards a self sufficient lifestyle
The ‘how’ of working towards these goals isn’t clear to me yet. But what I am clear about is that I want to prioritise our son, both in time and in presence. I feel that I’ve put them in order, in which case gaining financial independence will be the first stepping stone to then give us the flexibility to work towards the rest of the goals.
So stay tuned, as I make plans and work towards our goals I’ll document the ride!