Very simply, this feels good.
It got me thinking: most of my adult life I've been underpaid for what I do. I've mostly gotten by financially, but the quality of my work and the quality of most of my paychecks didn't match. Ten years ago, I was doing one of my most difficult jobs, the admin assistant work for a company VP, and I was barely making minimum wage. And I was good at the work. I'm not going to be falsely modest about that. But I was good at a job where my boss had, um, er, shifting standards as to whether they thought I was good. After two years, that boss fired me. Two months later, that boss offered me my job back, at a notable pay raise. But I saw that the circumstances that led to that boss firing me in the first place were likely to stay; I wanted to say, but didn't, You didn't appreciate my work before; what if you don't appreciate my work now? You gave me a big reason not to trust you. So I walked away from more pay because it would not have been enough to compensate for the weirdnesses and difficulties of that job.
I've done my best to do my jobs well. Even the print shop job I did next (early 2012 to early 2013) that paid me even less. 2012 was a hard-working year; hard in a physical way, but manageable. Hell, sometimes it was even kind of Zen. Sometimes it was amusing, like when I could motivate myself by pretending I was doing a Survivor-style challenge. Again, I DID A JOB WELL. For almost nothing. Okay, I exaggerate: for not much.
I like to think I'm doing this job well. And now I can earn more while doing it. Which helps the motivation, I'll tell you.
Yes, this will mean more taxes for me to pay later, but here's the thing: I'm glad to pay taxes. Sometimes it seems almost radical to say that; so many of us piss and moan about them. I don't particularly like filling out my tax forms, so I'm with a lot of you there, but again, I can manage. I'll manage next year when I work out my taxes for this year.
Meanwhile, this will give me more breathing room. I'll be able to pay down my (self-inflicted, I'll be honest) credit card balance more aggressively. Maybe I can save up for nice and special things. Maybe I can save up just in general.
*breathes in some relief*