Working from home while I have a new baby has not been a walk in the park. In fact, since Markus was born last January, I think I have slept through the night twice. Twice! And not because of him, but because of my own body. My health has suffered (just one example: I’ve had four colds since the beginning of September, when I normally get one or two colds per year), my marriage has suffered (Husband wants me to quit, but then has no suggestions as to how we would make up the difference financially), my spiritual life has suffered (Quiet Time? What’s that?), my social life has suffered (I don’t have much time for hanging out with friends). I say these things not to complain, because I am so thankful to have work and to also be able to be home with my kids. But as they say, “something’s gotta give,” and a lot of somethings have.
Since we got married, our goal has been that when we had children, I would stay home with them. That didn’t work out with Anja, but my work was flexible enough to allow me to work two 10-hour days, and Husband’s employer let him work four 9’s and a 4. Anja only had to be in daycare one and a half days per week.
As of October last year, I was able to quit my other job and work from home. I thought this was a huge blessing at the time, and now I’m starting to wonder if it would be better for my health, our marriage, the kids, and my soul if I worked ONLY 20 hours per week again. Being self-employed has its benefits, but the fact is that you are never. away. from. work. As soon as the kids are napping, I’m working. As soon as Husband gets home and we’ve eaten, I’m working. Then, after the kids are in bed, I’m working. Usually until midnight or later, when I fall into bed stressed and exhausted. No time with God. No time with Husband. Time with the kids, but I’m often running back and forth between them and answering emails or packaging orders.
So here’s where the title of the post comes from…I still would love to make mothering a FT occupation (at least while the kids are young), but I have some fears and some legitimate concerns. Would you help me out, those of you who are making it work somehow? I’ve wondered how people manage to make ends meet for years, but I don’t know that I’ve ever had the courage to ask anyone in person.
- That if I don’t keep current on some sort of job, I will never be able to find work I like again upon re-entering the workforce.
- That I will grow bored with “only” mothering.
- That I will take my boredness out on my children, causing them to feel undervalued.
- Even with the new house (and lower monthly payments), there is no way we can make ends meet without me contributing to the family income. I cannot “penny pinch” $1000/month. We have no car payments. Our one luxury is a gym membership, which we’re not willing to give up (and wouldn’t make much of a dent, anyway).
- I don’t know that I could make enough doing a PT job outside the home to cover daycare for two kids. PT daycare is usually more expensive, too.
- I enjoy photography, and I don’t really want to fully give it up. But I can’t really do it halfway and expect to have any sort of client base.
So what’s a girl to do? Keep burning the candle at both ends at the expense of everything I hold dear? That seems to be my only option. Prayers and advice welcome.