I often get asked why I work so much. Don’t you do anything else? You sit at your computer up to 14 hours a day and work? Yup, I sure do. I work all damn day but you have to know, I really truly love what I do. For now, I can’t imagine doing anything else except for maybe playing with puppies and kids. ❤
I used to think that a freelancer life was a glamorous one. I’ve seen the pictures. You’ve all seen them.
Some chick chilling out by the ocean, some sitting in a hammock with a laptop in the mountains with a view of the world. It all looks so glamorous.
It’s not. Not for this freelancer anyway. And before I go on, know that I am in no way, shape or form complaining about my life. I fucking love my life hard. But it’s not glamorous. Not for me anyway. Especially because while I’m working I’m constantly battling addiction demons.
So in case you don’t know, I am currently residing in Guatemala for two reasons: 1) I’m from Northern Ontario and I hate winter and 2) I am here to help feed hungry bellies (which now includes puppies). I traded in my 25+ yr career as a hairstylist for this life. It’s what I wanted, and what I signed up for.
Was I hoping to be sitting in a hammock by the ocean with my laptop writing and drinking margaritas? Mebbe. Anyway, that so doesn’t happen.
A ‘typical’ day for me goes something like this….
Wake up whenever, usually 7 ish, hand on my heart and say thank you to God for another day. Smile, get out of bed, say my morning prayers, (do I have any cigarettes this morning?) scramble to find my jammies and go make coffee.
While coffee is brewing I check the door to see if there are puppies outside sleeping. (shit I don’t have any cigarettes, fuck) This article will explain why sometimes I have puppies and sometimes I don’t.
Saying Goodbye to Puppies and Hating My Neighbour
Ok I don’t really hate anyone. Not even my neighbour, especially considering he is at the beginning stages of dementia…
Turn on my computer, find a good YouTube zen piece, grab my iPad, click on Insight Timer, and chill out for 15 minutes. After that I’ll write in my gratitude journal. Just before I get to the comp I sit quietly for a few minutes and enjoy my coffee (I wonder what time the store opens so I can go buy a couple of cigarettes). This whole morning routine can take up to an hour because….squirrel!!
I frantically test all ecigs to see which one might actually work for me today, puffing like a fiend on all of them and after realizing they’re all fucking dying, I get to the comp and see what happened while I was sleeping (should I just go and see if any store is open now I wonder?).
So now the work starts. Check my Facebook page, check Tailwind, check Pinterest, check Medium (omg I need to smoke..no you don’t Iva no you don’t keep checking your online shit) check emails, check Instagram and check in with my best friend in London, who is 7 hours ahead, to see how her day is going. Check in with my other best friend in Florida, who is 2 hours ahead, to see how his day is going. Another hour gone by.
By hour 2 the cravings are driving me mental. I’ve been up for almost two hours now and it’s just about cigarette time. I suck on an ecig like it’s my life support.
Ok Iva how about we just go exercise for 15 minutes and take your mind off the cravings for now. I work out, I make breakfast (shit I’m really gonna want a fucking cigarette after I eat!) I sit down to eat and read some Medium stories.
Breakfast done (I’m done, I can’t take this anymore) I wash up the dishes, get out of my jammies, throw my hair in a ponytail, get dressed and out the door I go. Once in the parking lot I wonder if I should walk or drive to the store. I walk, puppies find me and suddenly I have company.
At the store the attendant laughs at me and asks me “cuantos hoy?” How many do you want today? He knows I’m trying to quit. Some days I buy 3, some 5, some days I actually make it through the whole day and don’t buy any (yay Iva).
I sit and smoke outside. That first one is blissful. Peanut waits patiently while I smoke.
We head back home. I buy 4 cigarettes today. That should last me the whole day if I’m smart about it.
Back to work. It’s now about 11 am. Squirrel.
Sometimes I put my jammies back on when I return home if I know I’m not going anywhere the rest of the day. I try to plan out the day.
What is pressing, what can wait, do I have to create images, what do I want to write about today (oh that cigarette was so fucking good). Oh shit Facebook banned me today. There goes the neighbourhood :/
I start writing. I’m in a writing mood. I’m already thinking about when I can have my next cigarette.
Lunch time comes around which is usually around 1 or 2 and, well, minus the puppies, read above. The whole vicious food/cigarette cycle starts up again. Dinnertime, same thing.
So by day’s end, which sometimes is 10:00 pm I sit and wonder: how much work did I get done today? Did I do anything that will actually bring me in any money? How many people did I reach today? Was I successful in getting my message out around the world today? I wonder if I’ll have enough by the end of the month to pay rent and maybe take one family grocery shopping. I wonder if tomorrow will be the day I go without smoking.
I’d like to get out to see my friends this weekend. I never go out anymore. All I do is work and think about smoking. I’ve become addicted to my work too now.
My life is far from glamorous. I work in my jammies most days. I battle nicotine demons all day. I am alone all day. I don’t actually speak to people unless I go to the market and even then some days I can pull that off without conversation.
This is a day in the life of a freelancer with an addiction but trust me when I say, I honestly do love my life (minus that goddamn demon).
Peace and Love
xo iva xo
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