A dad's journey into health


job loss

Getting lost & finding something new

So I am well down the ‘mews of change’, embarking on a new career.
Although I didn’t want to leave my last career, it was definitely the right
thing to do.  Change is a strange path to walk but, refreshing and
exhilarating in equal measure.

I loved being a youth worker, it gave me a sense of belonging and (I felt)
kudos amongst other professionals as I was the person that could talk to
and advocate for young people.  I was defending the future.  Yep that’s how
I saw it I was the Don Quixote of the youth work world and I was on my

The truth however is much different.  After I was made redundant I was very
angry for it happening and worried for the young people I had supported.
After being out of the profession for a week or so a huge amount of
pressure was lifted from my shoulders and I felt great, light as a feather.
Looking back now I know that was because the job I once loved, wasn’t there anymore.  It had been kicked and beaten into a shape that I didn’t
recognise, just covered over with a youth work shaped plaster.  I hadn’t
realised, being in the midst of it, what was going on.  I hadn’t been a
real youth worker for years,  as I just accepted little change after little
change.  I know right – two legs good, four legs bad n’all that.

There is still a little guilt there, like I have abandoned the career I
loved, like I’m selling out.  But I had five months with no work and to be
honest there were no jobs there, I was unwanted just like the profession.
It’s being systematically destroyed around the country and my family and I
didn’t have time to wait for it to come back into fashion.

I guess this post is my youth work swan song.  Me, finally accepting I’m no
longer officially a youth worker (despite being about to qualify at uni).
I will always hold the principles with me and apply them wherever I go.
This blog didn’t turn out the way I thought it would but it has been
cathartic, and I think it has given me closure.


So I carry on with my journey.  Proud of what I’ve achieved and excited
about I could in the future.

No matter how hard change may seem, you owe it to yourself and your loved
ones to be happy and have self worth.

Love you……….. Bye

The New Guy at a New Job

We’ve all been there, the new guy (or gal) in the office, being introduced to the team with absolutely no hope of remembering  any of their names, having to learn new, alien ways of working and trolling through reams and reams of policy, induction gubbins.

Well this week it was my turn, yea new-guy-me.  It has been so good to get back to the world of work after so long in the redundancy wilderness.  Not just get back to work, but a work that is very interesting and for a supportive organisation.  Things for me have definitely taken a turn for the better.

Unfortunately I started too late in the month to get paid at the end of March so we have a barren and fraught April to endure first.  But and end is in sight at least.

It was so easy to get out of work mode and truth be told I do miss a lot of aspects about being off, like having time to clean the house, spending more time with the kids and Xbox time (cheeky wink).  I will not miss, however, the stress, the rows and the lack of being able to afford anything.  I would like to take this time to say thanks to the government (I know, right……Whaaaaaat).  Honestly, the amount of money you get for being a job seeker is low but it also allows you to work 16hrs without impacting on that amount, so working a few days and getting the allowance really helped us to keep our heads above water, till more work came our way.

Hopefully those days are over for good but I guess you never know and I will never be so complacent about work again, look after number one.

But back to the positive.  I have a new challenge and feel like a new me, I feel good and have started working out again and it seems to have coincided with the sunny weather of spring, so positive vibes all around.  Now I can focus on fun with the family, completing Uni and for the first time in a very long while, booking a family holiday.

I have another week of new experiences and knowledge to gain and am looking forward to it.  We’ve had to make childcare changes to accommodate my new hours but we are getting there.

I really struggled through redundancy, listening to peoples wisdom.  They would say ‘something will turn up’ and ‘things will be okay’.   I felt it was bollocks and just people wanting to get out of an awkward conversation (and maybe sometimes it was) but this is just something every family goes through (or hardships in general), I guess, it’s all cyclical.  They knew, and now I do too, that things on the whole will be okay and if you have people around that give support and love, you find a way.

Stay lucky guys

Toodles muchly

What to do? Where to go?

I am finding that being redundant is actually quite difficult.  First of all having your first week off in the middle of half-term is not conducive to job searches, secondly there is the fine line between needing a certain level of income versus the type of work you want to do. Which one do I choose?  I think that the money is a short term fix but may lead to long term job satisfaction issues, whereas getting a job in the field I want may mean working further away (childcare headache) or a lesser income.  It’s a real puzzler.

There is also the very real worry that I actually like being at home through the week.  I can get loads done, home improvements, finally getting on top of the mountains of washing and playing the Xbox (a real job search killer).  But no, I must be strong and remain professional.  I can catch up on all this when I retire ha ha.  But seriously, I think the biggest problem with being at home all day is the lack of social interaction, it’s bloody lonely.  I never realised how important routine and people were to my sanity.

It’s not all doom and gloom.  If I flip these problems on their heads they develop a positive sheen.  It is quite liberating knowing that you can do anything and take any opportunities as they are no longer such risks as I’ve already lost my job.

This week coming up is decision time though I feel.  Kids back at school I need to knuckle down and make some choices about WHAT I ACTUALLY WANT.  It’s a harder decision than you might think.  I still need to do Youth Work in order to complete my degree and I feel it would be a waste of my skills if I didn’t, whether that’s part time or voluntary remains to be seen, but there just aren’t the full time positions out there.

Wish me luck and I will keep you posted.  SI still feel this is a blessing in disguise, only time will tell I guess.

Embrace change and enjoy the journey folks.  Kisses

Biggest Fear Realised

Wow it’s been a long time since my last blog.  A LOT has happened.  My worst fear came to pass this week and I have been made redundant, gone, binned, hung out to dry and so forth.  It was a hugely difficult time for me on the run up to doomsday.  Three of us were going for two jobs and whad’ya know I was the one that missed out.

After that I still had to turn up for two weeks and show my face. all the while cringing inside, desperately worried for what was to come (where the money was coming from and how the hell can I support my family).  On my last day, I turned up went through the motions, handed all my stuff back in and then just slunk off.  I was too miserable to say goodbye to most people and to be honest to ashamed and embarrassed to be the only one without a job.  I did get a leaving gift which I was surprised about, a voucher, that will go nicely towards an Xbox game to cheer myself up.

The rest of the day was weird and a bit miserable too.  But I was shocked to wake up this morning (2 days later), to feel like a huge weight has been lifted off me, and I have lots of new opportunities to pursue.  I hadn’t realised just how much the job had changed over the years, and how far away from youth work people had let the service drift.  So I am updating my CV, looking around for new opportunities and feeling quite positive about the whole experience.  Like I have been set free.


Okay, so there is still an element of worry there, as we only have enough money to last about three months, so I need to find work quick but that’s okay, everything will be okay. I know I have people around me that care (and at the moment constantly send me job advertisements).

Truth-be-told, I think that I had fallen out of love with the job, it was never clearly defined what it should be.  It started off perfect but after a few years and a few changes of management it was battered into a shape it should never had been, and squeezed into space that it didn’t really fit into.

I still love youth work and feel I need to get back to the traditional universal club atmosphere.  To keep my skills up and to complete my degree.  But other than that I have an opportunity to explore what I want, maybe even diversify into a totally different field.  Who knows?

All I know is that the future is looking okay for now and I hope to keep you all up to date with my different goings on over this strange time.


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