Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Working thoughts

I should have finished the curtains by now for the living room, but I'm sitting here today thinking about work.

There are so many blogs that almost preach about the benefits of staying home with your family, or even if you don't have kids, just creating the space that is your home.  The peace that comes of having creating and maintaining a comfortable place full of love and fresh smells, nutritious food, gardening and generally providing for your family.

I'm all for that too, but there is one major drawback:  money.  I don't know of any dentist that will take carrots in trade for services, or a utility company that will take a homemade purse in exchange for natural gas.

Yvon works, of course, but as the girls get older their expenses are going up.  They shower more (yay!), they want to ski, or go to a movie, rent another instrument or take piano lessons.  It adds up pretty quickly and it's really hard to say no to healthy pursuits like music.  I increasingly make them pay for their own entertainment or clothing they don't "need".

I started a job just before Christmas that has it's boring moments, but it is flexible and pays all right.  Essentially the job is to supervise exam writing at a local college, providing a quiet or private space for people who need extra time and minimal distractions.  Sometimes it means reading the questions aloud for a student with a slight reading disability (dyslexia, or sight issues or just focus problems).  I enjoy the work and it doesn't really interfere with my life at home.   I've got six weeks of 4-hour days coming where I'll sit through classes with a deaf/hard of hearing man, writing his notes for him.  Maybe I'll learn a new trade!  It will never pay off our mortgage and buying a new vehicle would be a slow process, but it eases up considerably on the other finances.

Over Christmas an opportunity came up for a full-time admin position elsewhere with a friend.  I dream about taking warm holidays with my family, paying off debts quickly, braces for the two kids who need them, benefits and a pension plan.  Today is my interview and I'm not going into it with the right frame of mind.

There is a huge price to pay for me to enter a full-time job. I know many many people do it (it is the norm), but I can't imagine it.  Driving in rush hour, moving swimming and piano lessons to evenings, doing all laundry, grocery, gardening, crafting in the evenings (realistically I'd have to cut down on a lot of that), fewer field trips, cooking quickly, eating in a rush, hopefully not bringing work stresses home.  It's been a few years since I did all of that and I don't think I was a nice person to be around at the time.

Can I do that?  Am I ready for that?  There are so many good things about working full time, but they are all financial.  I don't know if I can do it.  Luckily my husband appreciates all that I do at home and doesn't think I'm just being lazy and selfish.   We'll see how it goes today.  It will be good interviewing practice, if nothing else.

Update:  I think the interview went well and now I'm suddenly very interested!  But are they?? 


Coralee said...

It can be such a struggle, ultimately you and Yvon need to do what's right for you and your family. You'll know and be at peace.

Unknown said...

Being suddenly *unable* to work, I get the financial aspect of things.

The price of having to work full time is indeed quite steep. May you find clarity. :)