Good news and bad news today.
I had the checkup appointment for my finger (snapped the tendon two months ago, lost the job I was due to start four hours later) today. The hand therapist was really happy with it: he asked whether I had kept the splint on faithfully and not let the top joint flop loose. If that does happen (and it is really, really hard to make sure that the splint doesn’t slide off and/or the top joint doesn’t bend, either through daily use and slippery life things like soap or sweat or shampoo or through just taking the splint off now and again to deodorize the disgusting situation), then you have to start again from week one.
I have been incredibly diligent about maintaining the straight angle of extension and he was impressed with my (very ugly looking and SO smelly) digit’s angle of flexion. Apparently, any angle below o.6 is considered a success and mine measured in at zero. I was told to continue wearing the splint at night and to use it when the hand might be in a situation where that finger could get active: it was emphasized to me how important it was to not injure the tendon whilst it was still healing. I was told I could drive again (but not lift luggage).
That’s all good. Now the bad.
Today I was in the fortunate (to most people) situation of being offered two jobs. One of them was the previously mentioned job I couldn’t start eight weeks ago; they wanted me and had tried to work rosters around me, without knowing whether or not the finger would be healed. This is a good job. I would enjoy it and it is based out of Perth and I would travel around Western Australia. However, it is fairly seasonal so I wouldn’t be working year round.
The other one was based in the desert, doing extended touring, with a lot of guided walking. I’ve always wanted to work out of Alice Springs and the camping outback experience is what I know and love. Trouble is, this job isn’t seasonal. I would have to move there. I assumed that it would be just the cooler months but apparently it goes year round.
If I wasn’t married, and so incredibly happy with my husband, I would take the second job like a shot. Originally, I thought it was seasonal, as I said, and I felt that six to eight months away was doable, especially as we had worked out a promise that we would make a way to see each other every four weeks at the very least. But permanent and based away? I don’t know.
He has a job here and there isn’t really anything out there for him. He wants me to go and I want to go but all I can think of him living here, in our happy home, all alone and it makes me so sad. I would have the job satisfaction of learning new regions and rising to the challenge of a new position. I know I would thrive on it. But he would be doing the same old things in the same old place and it is always so much harder to be the one who hasn’t left for work. I know this because I feel it in how much I miss him when he goes away; he is busy then and he doesn’t miss me nearly as much. Reverse the situation and it is obvious that the one away has the better deal.
If I was single, I would take the outback job with no hesitation. Financially, it would be indulgent but I would only be looking out for myself and mine and I could handle that. I’ve taken away jobs before with similar risks and I’ve always survived, no matter how much below the poverty line I was. It’s different when your economic power is mixed up with somebody else.
There is also my daughter to consider. I am really enjoying having her live with us and she wouldn’t stay if it was only her stepfather living here. I can understand why (she likes him but he isn’t her immediate family) but the alternative is living again with her father. He says he is okay with it (a total reverse of the horrible situation he initially caused by telling my daughters that he didn’t want them living with him and accusing me of deliberately trying to engineer situations where I could abdicate all responsibility for them and foist them onto him; I don’t think he understands that I see them as a privilege and a pleasure, not as pawns to try and hurt my ex- marital partner) but the man flips 180 degrees in his attitudes and standards every time the wind changes. I fully expect him to somehow find a reason that my daughter wanting to live with him, rather than here, is some carefully engineered scheme on my art, designed to score points in a non-existent game of “I will deliberately fuck up your life”.
There is the fitness aspect as well. I feel I could do it but my stupid body often lets me down. But it is only going to get worse as I age and I feel that it is now or never for this type of job.
All these factors and I don’t know which way it swings. I’ve tried doing the pros and cons lists and they pretty much come out even. Everybody I’ve asked for advice says that they couldn’t decide either.