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Kids Come First

kids come firstHey, everyone!  My name’s Katie.  I’m 29 years old and am married with two kids, ages 2 and 4.  Before I had our first child, my identity was consumed by my career.  I mean, I worked ALL the time and in the very little spare time I had to eat and sleep, I was thinking about my work or replying to e-mails.  At the time, I really enjoyed the work I was doing and didn’t mind the fact that I hardly ever saw my friends or family.

I got pregnant, and while I still worked way more than I should have, I just knew that I would be able to balance having a successful career and still be a good mother to our child.  We found a great daycare for our son, and while I enjoyed my maternity leave, I couldn’t wait to get back to work again.  It was sometimes hard for me to get away from work to come home and spend time with our son in the evening, but for the most part, I did a really great job of leaving my work at the office in order to spend quality time with him.

A year and a half later, I got pregnant again, and since working a full time job with one kid was doable, we just assumed that the second child would follow suit.  Boy, were we wrong.  About halfway into my pregnancy, I started having issues with my blood pressure.  I was put on bedrest, so I obviously had to take a leave of absence from my job.  My poor husband ran himself to death for two months between working full time, shuttling our son to daycare, feeding, bathing, and entertaining him in the evenings, and trying to take care of me as much as possible.  We did have some help from my mother, but for the most part, it was all on him.

Fast forward a month and a half…I went to the doctor for an exam and my blood pressure was out the roof.  They told me I would not be going home that day and that I would be admitted into the hospital.  I was monitored, poked, and prodded for two days, and when they couldn’t get my blood pressure to go down, decided to do an emergency C-Section in order to prevent any complications with me or the baby.  So if you’re doing the math, our daughter was born two months early, at 3 lbs 6 oz.  She spent a month in the NICU while her body continued to develop.  She had to learn how to breathe on her own, drink from a bottle, and gain weight before she was released to go home.  That was the longest month of my life (besides the month and a half I spent laying in bed).

Because our daughter was a preemie, the doctors strongly advised us to keep her indoors, keep guests to a minimum, and basically keep her in a bubble away from germs and changes in temperature.  They told us putting her in daycare would be one of the worst things we could do and that the best thing I could do for her was to breastfeed until she was at least a year old.  Now, with our son, I breastfed during my maternity leave, but as soon as I went back to work, I couldn’t keep up with pumping and my milk supply dried up pretty quickly.  So all of this, along with the fact that hiring a nanny to come to our home and keep our tiny, delicate daughter scared me to death.

We knew that we ultimately wanted to do what was best for our little girl, so I made the decision to quit my job and stay at home with her so that I could continue to breastfeed and give my undivided attention to her care and development.  Since we would be losing my income, we decided to pull my son out of daycare because we wouldn’t be able to afford it, and that is how I became a stay at home mom.  Never in my life did I imagine I would be staying at home with my children full time, staying in my pajamas half the day because there was just not time to take a shower and get dressed, but I am, and am so thankful that I get to spend such quality time with my kiddos during their early years.

Now that our daughter has caught up developmentally, I could probably go back to my career, but after taking so much time off and after seeing how much I actually enjoy staying home with my children, I don’t want to go back to a 40+ hour a week job.  My heart wouldn’t be in it, and I feel that it wouldn’t be fair to whoever hired me.

We have definitely missed my income these past couple of years, and although we have gone without a lot of things to make it work, we are now at the point where I need to start making some money so we won’t always have to tell our children “no” when they ask for something.  We want to be able to take them on trips, buy them cars when they are old enough to drive, pay for them to go to college, and basically give them a better life than we ever had.

I’ve started doing a lot of research about working from home and I just know I am going to find the perfect job that I can do to help our family financially while still spending as much quality time as I can with our children.  So that’s where this website comes in.  I plan to post about my experiences of becoming a work at home mom.  Hopefully I’ll hit the job jackpot in the very near future and then I’ll be able to tell you all about how you, too, can become a successful work at home mom!

Gotta run…the kiddos are calling!

-Katie

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