I am twenty-seven years, two months and twenty-three days old. I have cried twice this morning. I have made two coffees. And I have one cat with one eye asleep at my twenty-seven year old feet.
It dawned on me last night, over a bottle of sparkling French rose and a charcuterie board, that I am twenty-seven and starting all over again. Sitting across from my friend, a beautiful and wonderfully successful woman whom I love and adore more than life itself, I listened to her talking about her job. The lady has worked hard, she has done those hours of not getting paid even an inch of what she is worth, she has done the shit jobs and now, years later, she is in complete demand throughout the media world. She is being internationally headhunted, she has so much ground to stand on to pretty much demand whatever pay she desires and you know what? She has fucking earned it. She is the single most deserving human of all that is coming her way at the moment.
So I sat there, lathering my sourdough with fig jam and prosciutto, listening to her career prospects and feeling such overwhelming pride. But then, feelings of complete worthlessness and regret crept in and I felt super fucking sad, guys. So sad. I mean, I had alcohol and a meat board and my best friend so it wasn't all doom and gloom, but there I was thinking, “I am about to take an entry-level job that is going to leave me on a very tight budget.” And I am absolutely shitting myself.
The night passed with laughter, so much laughter. We watched a concert, and drank gin and we walked along the harbour and then holed up in a pub. She had a Bloody Mary. I had whiskey, and a sip of her Bloody Mary. First time I have ever had a Bloody Mary and I am hooked and love them and love the burn and would like one now. And by the time I got home, it was 1am and the carnage that is my life at the moment was but a distant, glorious haze. Meaning: I passed the fuck out. I woke up this morning - completely riddled with anxiety. I was already bored of myself. I was already bored of the mood and the thoughts and the general repetitive nature of my head and life. All I needed was the confirmation or the refusal of my salary negotiation. And then from there, either way, I start again. My palms were sweaty, my stomach ached and as I mentioned, I was crying. So I showered, counted the amount of new pimples that I have - which is a thing at the moment, stress pimples, so that’s fun - and headed to the shops.
My phone pinged with a message. And there it was. My offer. It was less than what I asked for, but more than what they offered. I had done it. I had, however successfully, managed to negotiate a little bit more money for myself, in an industry that is almost impossible to break into. Not only that, but through a teary voice, my incredible man assured me that we can make this work, both financially and in life, in general. He further made me smile and fall for him all over again by telling me to, instead of thinking of this as me starting all over again, think of it as finally being the time to find myself. He said that I am simply moving forward with my life in a direction that is going to completely fulfil me. And though I hate to admit it, he is right. Again. Always. He is always fucking right.
So yeah, maybe I am twenty-seven years old and just really starting my career. And yeah, maybe I am going to have to share tins of tuna with my cat for like, a really short (long) period of time. And yeah, I have a long way to go to get to where I want to be, where I see myself being. But I have a killer friend to look up to who is completely kicking ass and taking names. Also, I hate that phrase. I landed a job in an industry that is up there with the hardest industries to break into, a job that I am really fucking passionate about. And I have a man who has not, for a single moment, given up on me or lost faith in me. My name is Leah, I am twenty-seven years old and I cried twice this morning and on Monday morning, I start at Peribo Books as Sales and Marketing Administrator. Cheers to that.