Thursday, August 13, 2015

Going Back to Work After 20 Years as a Stay-At-Home Mom

Holy smokes!  What have I got myself into?!?

My First Day of Work!
After nearly 21 years as a stay-at-home mother, I have decided it's time to go back to college.  I'd been toying with the idea off and on for several years, but it never seemed to be the right time.  6 years ago, I was preparing to enter the work force full time.  My kids were in school full-time, my online business was BOOMING, and I was putting out feelers for people I could hire as employees.  I was ready to take the leap.  All the sudden, after 10 years of infertility, I wound up pregnant.

When we started having children the first time around, my husband and I agreed that we would not bring children into this world, if I was going to hire someone to raise them. So, I put my personal aspirations aside, and put all my energy into being the best mother I could be.  I'm certainly not the best in the WORLD by any stretch of the imagination.  But I was the best I could be.

When I wound up pregnant with our third, I put aside my aspirations again, and prepared for another round of motherhood.  Then, 6 months later, BOOM! The pregnancy bomb hit again.  We were going to have a fourth.  This time, he was special needs.  All my attention was needed to care for him, so I sold my online business and got serious about this mothering thing.

It's been nearly 5 years now, and little Jacob has one more year until he's in school full-time. This year he will be gone approximately 4 hours in pre-school and therapies.  So, after much discussion with my husband, and exhaustive research, we decided that NOW was the time for me to get my education so that I could re-enter the workforce next year when he starts school.

Luckily, I had one year of college under my belt from before we were married, and I had taken 12 courses (yes, that's 6 per semester).  Most of those classes still transfer after all these years (crazy, huh?).  So, I am going to major in Addiction Studies (or Sociology, depends on what the counselor says when I talk to her next week).

I am working toward getting my ISAS - Idaho Student of Addiction Studies certificate - which only requires 8 classes (2 quarters of classes for me) and 300 internship hours.  Rather than taking the courses and THEN interning, I'm doing this backwards.  I have 1 month to get my hours while my oldest is still home from school and I have family to care for Jacob and minimize his shell-shock of me being gone.  Then, when Elisha goes off to college, I will also go back through online classes so that I can do my work while the little ones are in bed. My daughter and I will both be Sophomores in college - AT THE SAME TIME!

At the end of my two quarters, I will in essence be just a few classes away from graduating.  Until then, I am working 40-50 hour weeks this month, as an intern, learning all the in's and out's of addiction, case management, counseling and what-not.  Wish me luck!  And pray for me!  It's been a really really REALLY long time since I've been in the work force OR in college.  And I don't want this new endeavor to affect my family too terribly much.  But I think the time is right for me and our family.

Cross your fingers!

...Oh, and by the way, I went to work with two different sized earrings on.  Yeah, that's how I roll! :)

1 comment:

Geri Gaddy said...

How exciting and rad!