Walk down Varick Avenue and take the 1, but which way? Towards Times Square, but is that Downtown or Uptown/The Bronx? I finally figure it out, swipe, my metrocard, and board the train. Next, I need to catch the 7 to 61st and Woodside, and then catch the Q18 to 65th Avenue and 50th Avenue. It’s my fourth week in a row in New York City. I have been on more busses, trains, and in enough cabs to last me a very long time. What happened to my life? I was a very satisfied SAHM of four, figuring out how to make homeschooling work for the 5th year. All of that changed with one phone call.
I have never been opposed to working. Okay, let me rephrase that. I have never been opposed to making money, but on my terms. I began to feel the very real crunch of our finances and tried to figure out what I could do that would not compromise my values of keeping family first and not disrupt the dynamics of our household. I started the typical Work from Home type of search and basically found a bunch of nothing. I started thinking about reaching out to some of my old coworkers. I worked in the technology consulting field for over 7 years with a major company and when I resigned (because I wanted to devote more time to my family), I managed to do some contract work the following year. I enjoyed doing the contract work because of the flexibility, and of course the pay was a huge, motivating factor. I began to think about how I could do contract work again. I was very specific about my requirements; part-time and from home. I was still nursing G5 almost exclusively and wasn’t ready to travel, especially without her.
Fast forward a few months later and I receive a call on a Monday from a Resource Manager from my previous employer and he wanted to know my availability to work as a contractor on a project until the end of the year. Before I could even wrap my brain around the possibility, he adds that the project has a pretty quick start date….the following Tuesday, and it’s in New York! (Not quite, the part-time, from home that I had required a few months earlier) I called ODC and we knew that this was an opportunity that we had to take. It wasn’t exactly what we wanted, but we were committed to making the best of the situation and keeping the big goal for our family as our focus.
I usually spend about 2, no more than 3 days away from home during the week. I would be lying if I said that I have not enjoyed staying in hotels, not cooking, and having some very quiet “me time”. I would also be lying if I didn’t admit that I feel very guilty for leaving my 18 month old. She still nurses when I come home, but I can’t help but think about what runs through her mind when I keep disappearing for two days. ODC and I went out on Saturday, and the way she cried when I left, really hurt my soul. It was if she was saying “Don’t leave me again”. That probably explains why we were back home before 8:00, lol!
More than once, I have tried to figure out how to bring her with me. I have great friends, and our favorite sitter, Brittany, living up here. Once I thought through the logistics, I realized, with the help of Lisa, from Wives On Purpose, that she was just fine with her Daddy and her big sisters. Speaking of her Daddy, there is no way that I could do this without him. He has stepped up in ways that I can’t even begin to explain. He has kept the girls on track with their homeschooling, cooked all the meals, and he has even washed the cloth diapers! Shout out to Scott for his help! ODC has also been interviewing sitters and of course the Gs must give him their stamp of approval 🙂
I still consider myself a SAHM. I’m just on a temporary assignment. I’m also not opposed to becoming a WAHM, with the right kind of support system in place. I know that we have not made the best financial decisions in the past. This is not our ideal situation, but we are grateful for the opportunity to restore “Financial Peace” to our family.
At the end of a work day, I usually head back to my hotel, grab a bite to eat, and I’m in my pajamas and in bed by 6:00. Yes, in New York City, I can’t manage to muster up enough energy to do anything! Maybe this is my earned vacation for 10+ years of mothering. Then I arrive home to the same bickering, lost library books, and undone chores. That’s when it’s back to reality.