As of two days ago, I'm officially and completely employed by the company.
This was somewhat in the air (not on the ground level but legally) because I signed my work contract all the way in July, and I'd only arrived into Belgium to work in December. I'm not sure what the actual issue was, but now I have a new contract, and it's all good. I even got paid my first salary!
The social secretary (who runs the documents for my boss in the background) did a great job by giving me a higher-status position legally, which prompted higher pay for fewer hours. (Apparently all of that is not for my boss to decide directly, and is instead governed by employment rules of Belgium and/or the EU.) All in all, it's a significant bump to my available funds, and it's welcome even more so now that I think I have a good shot at celebrating Christmas and New Year in New York in 2023 → 2024.
Hearing a fair amount of Russian in Brussels. Mostly from women. Some of them were discussing the happenings in Ukraine from the position of (what sounds like) having fled the country. Hearing other people speak openly of the war and its consequences in my native tongue is somehow affirming, but also chilling: in as much as it feels like the war is that much closer to me, that much more observable, than it ever was when I was in Russia.
Having no money worry is a big relief. Being able to plan out more, and sooner, upgrades to self is a bigger relief still.