Friday, December 4, 2009

The Work Saga

Well, my first week in cyberspace has been quiet on your end and loud on my end. I would have written sooner, but my head was swimming and I don't think I could have put together a cohesive post that made any sense to anyone but me! Here's a recap.

When Little Man was born in September of '07, we had two mortgages. I didn't want to work any more at all, but we couldn't stay afloat with two mortgages and one salary. The salary of a school teacher, nonetheless. So, I worked part-time at 20 hours a week. The reason we had two mortgages was that my Sweetie and I both owned houses when we got married, and we procrastinated about putting my house on the market. When I was about 7 months pregnant, we finally decided to get off our tuckusses and put the house on the market. It sold when Little Man was about 5 months old. So we made a huge decision, and I put in my resignation at work. I was going to be a SAHM!! It was what I'd dreamed about for years!

Then my supervisor (I'll call him Buck) calls me and says, "What if you only work 10 hours a week? I think that would benefit you and us." So, we made another huge decision and I decided to stay at work for 10 hours per week. We decided that the little bit of extra money would be good, and I'd get to do something "adult" for a little while twice a week. Success!

Several months later, 10 hours wasn't enough (for Buck) and now I'm working 14 hours a week. Never throughout the whole time Little Man has been here has the thought of wanting to go back to work full-time entered my mind. Then, last Tuesday, the f-bomb was dropped on me. No, not *THAT* f-bomb! The worst one - Full-time!! Buck told me over the phone that his hope for me was to be back up to full-time at work by January 1, 2010. I looked like a fish out of water, gasping. My mouth kept opening and closing, with no sound coming out at all. Buck thought we had been disconnected or something, but in actuality, I was as speechless as a person could be. My first reaction was to cry.....I did a few minutes later. I was told to think about it......over Thanksgiving. Nice.

I have been with my employer for almost 8 years, so I feel a strong sense of loyalty and obligation to them. They have been very gracious to me, letting me basically decide my schedule and all. There's been a pretty big change at work, and not only was I offered a full-time job, but a promotion as well. It was no small decision to make. The job that I was offered is pretty unique and requires skills and knowledge that I currently have, and has proven to be difficult to teach a new employee. Therein lies my sense of obligation. If I don't fill this position, who possibly could? Dilemma!!!

I decided that I'd have to fully know the financial implications of both possibilities. I guess I should mention that I was told that I could keep my current hours, if that was what I really felt was best. Again, I have a very gracious employer. So I made a spreadsheet. We've been wanting to move into a nicer house for some time, so we immediately felt that if I worked full-time, that wish would definitely become a reality. Here's what I found out.

I'm freaking stellar at managing money!!! We are way better off than we even knew we were. We're not the best people at keeping a really close eye on our finances. We know if we have money or if we don't. I don't have to lecture me about that. Anyway, with the money I've been saving with couponing, we're very comfortable right now! We're actually saving a bunch of money every month, even though we don't make much at all! And if we really work hard and try to pay off the Mommy-Mobile we bought when I was pregnant, we'll be able to afford the house we've been hoping for! We can actually afford it right now, but if there was some sort of big money emergency, we might be in trouble. And if I take the full-time job, we'll only add less than $300 to our pockets each month! Of course, I've taken into consideration that we'll buy a house. But a new house and $300 doesn't make it worth it to be away from Little Man full time. Especially if we can afford the new house if we're sans a car payment! So our goal is to pay off the Mommy-Mobile by the time Sweetie is out of school for the summer. We have some money saved up (because I'm a fru-"gal!") and we're pretty sure we can do it. Then we'll buy our new house, and actually have more money in our pockets than we do RIGHT NOW!!!

I was so anxious about this decision that my chest muscles started hurting. Every time I would think that I might have to go back full-time right now, I could hardly breathe. But when I envisioned myself telling Buck no, I could breathe. That should have made the decision easy, but my sense of obligation to my employer was a driving force in my serious consideration of the job. My MIL helped me rationalize the situation. She told me that other job opportunities would present themselves to me, but Little Man will never be 2 or 3 again. She's so right! I was thinking that this job opportunity was the once-in-a-lifetime chance. But in reality, spending as much time with my son as I can when he's young is the true once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

*Whew* So, there's a long version of a very difficult conflict I had to overcome. I'm so at peace with my decision. If you hung in there and read all of this.....sorry you lost about 10 minutes of your life! :P I'll try to do better about posting, even if I'm mid-dilemma. I wish you a wonderful weekend! I'll post again early next week.

Your Go-To Fru-"gal"

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