Well after a long talk (on my part) and many panic attacks later (on Brian's part) we finally decided that he was not happy where he was and that he needed a different line of work to feel complete.
I can't say this is a surprise. I mean, he's told me multiple times that he only likes his current job for the benefits and the bennies are great. However it's caused him more stress than I have ever seen from him and I fear that he might crack one of these days.
We even ended up going to the dr last month to see if he was actually having panic attacks (he was) and if he wanted medication for it (he doesn't) so they charged us $70 (go figure)
I thought that maybe he was stressed out about money. We have had a bit of financial trouble this month (but really who hasn't?) and since he started doing commissions, we've been right on track again. He kept having them.
As an interesting aside- we both get panic attacks but they manifest themselves in different ways. I get light headed, dizzy, nauseous and if I don't catch it right away, I pass out. Like- THUD!- I'm all of a sudden down for the count. He gets chest pains. He has a muscle in his chest/back that spasms and stress is a trigger for it. He used to get them sporadically but now has them on a daily/constant basis. The dr did in fact confirm it was stress related. So... that's how I know he's still having panic attacks. He grabs his chest and freaks out for a moment or two.
I feel awful for him. I want to make it better. But there is one rule*.
Thou shalt not leave a job unless thou has another one lined up
He's getting up early tomorrow and he is going to talk to a previous employer and see what they can work out together. He really liked his last job, and I think I know why. It was never the same. It was constantly changing. There was not a lot of stress. There was busy and then there was busier. Not a lot of down time. This is the sort of situation he thrives in. He hates monotony, hates repetitive behaviors, and hates having down time. Which is all his job currently is.
Me? I like it. But this isn't about me. It's about him and what I have to do for him. I want my husband to be happy and mentally in a better place. I want him to be able to focus on his art work and concentrate on free lance, having a more flexible job will help that. I want him to do what he wants to do. I am concerned about finances, but I am still going to be looking for another job and honestly- we will be fine. I spend way too much time worrying about what might happen and then I realize- uhm it's already happened.
His other issue is he feels like he has to justify himself to friends/family. Especially my family, because he loves them so much and doesn't want them to think bad of him. But my family knows- You have to follow your gut instincts. He worries what his friends will think of him leaving a 'good job' when there aren't many out there.
I told him that there are only two people in this whole world he has to worry about pleasing. One is me and the other is him. If we are both on the same page, then that is what matters most.
And I am all for it.
Now he is all excited and wants to start this new chapter in his life and I feel like I have my old husband back. One who was passionate and strong willed, determined to follow his dreams. I feel like his creativity is coming back. I feel like he is becoming himself again. I actually saw him smile today.
But I am hella tired from our long talk all night. So I'm off for a nap.
*Thanks to Rachel for helping us own it and sticking to the rules.