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The Birthday Present

written by Shelley Marsh 05/03/2013

On June 18th last year it was my birthday, a day like pretty much any other.  My husband and I dropped our beloved daughter, Miss Money at childcare and I went off to work.  About mid-morning, I passed a team mate in the photo copy room and we had a quick chat when he confided in me that he was scared that he was going to be made redundant.  I told him that if anyone in the group was going to be made redundant it was going to be me.  I returned to my desk to finish my research report and not more than half an hour later it happened to me!  My boss pulled me into a room and that was it.  I was told it wasn’t anything to do with my performance, it was cost cutting and there would be several of us who would be going.

For me it wasn’t completely unexpected, things had been tough since my return from maternity leave 11 months prior and let’s face it I am not the first mother to return from maternity leave only to be made redundant.  In our case, Miss Money had been sick a lot.  When I say a lot I mean at least every second week and to the point where I remember sitting in the doctor’s office on my third visit for the week saying “I am not the Munchausen lady, I promise” (Munchausen by proxy syndrome is form of child abuse that involves the overstatement or fabrication of illnesses or symptoms by a key caretaker.)  On the journey we found out she had an egg allergy, asthma and an intolerance to wheat all of which were not helping but we found juggling everything with a sick child very difficult.

 For me I saw my redundancy as one big birthday present – a great opportunity.  It was my chance to get off the merry go round for a minute or two, catch my breath and not only enjoy more time with Miss Money but assess what I wanted to do next.  They say you have several careers during your working life and I am just starting to embark on a new one.  From stock market analyst to mummy blogger with a passion for helping parents get the most from their money.  I have always wanted to run my own business so I am standing on the edge and have decided to jump, I might fall, I might fly but I am certainly not going to waste the opportunity my birthday present has given me.

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