Despite the car troubles and sleep issues (my mom has taken to waking me up every hour or two with her final wake up call between 4-6 a.m.), this has been an oddly good week. Not a morning person at the best of times, I’ve been exhausted, run down, and fighting a cold, and just generally kind of down lately, so it was nice to have a couple really good things happen this week in the midst of all that.
First is, I am now a freelance writer! I’ve always loved writing and people have always told me I write well. I have a bit of a stream of consciousness, dear diary approach to this blog, so maybe it’s not the best example of my writing chops. What you read is mostly just what came to me as I was typing without a lot of planning or editing unless I see something that is just grossly wrong. It’s meant to be informal, low-stress, and really just a place to vent and give people a window into what it’s like to be a caregiver for a loved one with dementia. But these new contracts are different. These are writing for other people and their businesses.
A couple months ago, I enrolled in a class called The Happy Writer to learn more about blog and copy writing for entrepreneurs and businesses. I do all of that for my own business already, but had never been formally “trained.” I just knew things from reading books and observing what other people were doing.
When I saw the course, I figured I could learn how to do it the “right” way and maybe even pick up a couple writing clients. In the past, I’ve never had the nerve to apply for writing jobs even though I’d always wanted to. Anyway, after getting half way through the course, I got cocky and applied with two agencies (each does a little different kind of writing) and got them both! It’s pretty exciting for me, because it’s a validation that I am skilled enough to make money doing it. I am still in the onboarding phase, so fingers crossed I won’t have to eat those words, but it’s a start. The pay is not as much as I could make going after my own clients, but I know I will learn in doing and in working with theirs, so I am really excited.
The second piece of good news is that I’ve been following Elizabeth Cronise McLaughlin and her work with the Gaia Project for a while now. Every time they advertise their RISE Activist/Leader Bootcamp, I find myself wanting to enroll then not being able to, because money is tight. So, when they announced that they were offering scholarships, I took a chance and applied, even though I did not think I would get one, let alone a leader tier one that will allow me to participate in expanded lessons and calls.
There are some people out their doing amazing work, who have bigger reach than I do, so I wasn’t holding my breath, because I’m sure they get a lot of applicants, but I GOT IT!!! I am so excited, because I just KNOW I will learn lots of things that will help me expand the activist work I want to do on behalf of individuals with dementia and family caregivers, who largely are women and who often give up lives, careers, social life, retirement — in short, just about everything — in order to care for loved ones.
The program starts later this week and I am SO excited to be a part of it and to learn from someone who is doing such impactful work in the world. It’s so important for us to make a difference and not just sit here like lumps thinking only of ourselves.
We’re all connected and we’re meant to help each other on our walk through this world. I’m excited to get to use what I learn in spreading dementia awareness and also with the women I teach in my own programs. It’s so nice to have something to focus on that is not just the world of taking care of my mom, which eats up most of my time and energy these days, but that just belongs to me and the impact I want to make in the world with my work and life.