As a columnist I’m always looking for ideas to write about. The news is always a good source of goings on, obviously. But does anyone really listen to it? A few weeks ago, as I was driving along, the news came on the radio. There was a bit about how companies want to invest in Northern Ireland because we work so hard and we always deliver the goods. The next random bit of news was a few days later. This time it was about the TV show “Game of Thrones”, people from the show were giving quotes, I admit I was only half listening. Whoever was being interviewed was saying that Northern Ireland is great and they hoped to have a good film base here, more productions being made, investment in the country….something like that. Then a few days later there was a piece about spending power in the UK. People who live in London have more to spend a week than everyone else, and Northern Ireland has the least. Again, I was only half listening. For some reason my mind kept popping back to these three small bits of info. As I was washing dishes after dinner one night, the penny dropped. They were all connected. This country is on the up, we have a growing film industry, we work hard, and people want to be here. But why are we at the low end of the pay grade? Now I’m no economics expert but if we work so hard then shouldn’t we be paid more? It only seems fair. But maybe we just aren’t asking. We need to have confidence in ourselves to speak up and demand more because we deserve it. We need to work together to get better wages, more investment in the country, and more jobs. We are not lazy people, far from it. There is no point in being modest about being a hard worker. After it a lot of thought I have decided I will be asking for more. It’s scary and there is always the fear of rejection but if we don’t ask, we don’t get. Hopefully someday soon I’ll be listening to the news and hearing that we are the richest country in the world because we work so hard and asked for more. That may seem far-fetched but it’s not impossible. Nothing is impossible.
Anyone who has kids knows anything can happen. What was once a beloved food can change into a plate of doom overnight. Kids are amazing, unpredictable and get sick. Children can get sick a lot which leads every working mother to the same dilemma- what do you do when your little bundle of joy is sick? Should you take time off to look after them, or leave them with someone trusted while you go and earn some money to keep the roof over their heads?