Now that we are FINALLY totally settled in our apartment, I spent the last couple of week seriously looking for a job (you can check out my portfolio here if you are interested in what I do). As a software developer, I’m pretty lucky in that I can look for contract work. There are plenty of jobs in software at the moment so you don’t have to look too far, as long as you are willing to put the effort in.
Career opportunities will appear through luck throughout your life, but if you want to make them pop up more frequently, then you have got to network. Since I am new to Perth, I really wanted to meet people, not only to find friends, but also to build a professional network. My strategy has been to go to Meetups. I have been to A LOT of them lately. This has been pretty tough in itself, for every 2 I went to I think I had to skip another. They can sometimes take a lot out of me (just because I am an introvert, never mind the CFS) and I obviously have to ration my energy. But it has been so much fun. I have met some awesome people, and as a result, I have been to meetings over coffee nearly every day for the last 2 weeks looking for job opportunities. As a result, I already have work lined up for the next little while, and I am pretty excited about it! Time to learn some new skills and work with new people!
I am still working part time for my old workplace back in NZ, but starting this week I am working another part time job. This is entirely on purpose and is hopefully what I am going to be doing for the rest of the year. There are a few reasons for this arrangement, and it all comes back to this damn illness of mine.
I just do not feel comfortable to get a permanent full time job. I just don’t. I am scared that it will be too much for me and after three months I would have worked myself into the ground, or more realistically, into bed. I’m scared of working too hard given my illness and ending up just as sick as I was last year. By doing part time short term contracts instead, if or when I feel that it is getting too much, I can simply insert a break between contracts. This is the ideal scenario of course, let’s see how this really turns out….
I keep bouncing around as to whether I am happy with this or not. I think the answer is yes. I am a very ambitious kind of person, so it does feel a bit weird not looking for the perfect permanent full time role with the intention of climbing up the ladder. But in saying that, I am really excited for the opportunities that await in terms of just developing my skills. Who knows what could happen, but I could end up working with 6 different teams on 6 entirely different projects this year, what a cool experience to learn different things and with different people! Or maybe I’ll find that I’m doing really well and I feel ready to get a more permanent position.
Regardless, I think I see a few more interviews over coffee in my future. In tech (and most industries I imagine), it is a lot easier to find a full time contract rather than part time, so already my options are limited. But on top of this I am super picky about the culture of the team and workplace that I am applying for. I believe in transparency (and also I’ve kind of forced my own hand by having this blog... ) which means that I announce up front that I have an unpredictable illness and an employer needs to be ok with this. The tech industry is pretty progressive so I am yet to come across anyone who considers this an issue, but still, it’s not fun having to tell someone who’s contemplating hiring you that you’ve been really sick before and they need to be aware that some days you just won’t be able to leave the house to come to the office. So far, I don’t think this has been an issue, and in fact I know it’s not at all for the work that I have lined up. But it is obviously something I wish I didn’t have to worry about.
I’m pretty nervous about working close to full time again, with my two part time jobs. But I’ve done everything I can to put myself in a pretty flexible position in terms of the amount of hours I need to work and where I need to do them.
I guess seeing as this is a recipe site I should probably talk about food for a moment… I’m doing my gut health program, again (this is the third time now I think?). There were a few false starts but I’m properly back into it and going really well. I absolutely feel better for it, but I really miss nuts and grains - I get them back in a couple weeks! I am also going to a naturopath in a few days. Will has a couple of family members who swear by him so I am going to see if he can offer any further wisdom. I am still sooooo much better than I was before I saw the herbalist way back in November, which I blogged about here. In fact I even did sweat therapy again a couple weeks ago as a bit of a reboot. It was someone even more terrible than I remember, and I was a zombie the next day, but after that I really did feel a whole lot better again. But still, I don’t quite live a normal life again yet and I am still living in hope that I’ll be able to run a half marathon one day, so hopefully the naturopath visit is useful, watch this space!