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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

About Unemployment

In a few months I will be transitioning from an unemployed individual to a stay at home mommy.  The transition will happen whenever this little gal makes her appearance.  Besides actually giving birth I won't have to make any other changes....professionally.  The decision to be a stay at home mom was not a conscious decision.  I always figured I'd be a working mother simply because it makes financial sense.  Things don't always go the way I figured.

Back in 2012 I lost my job and began immediately looking for a new gig.  That search proved to be very difficult.  I didn't think I'd just magically conjure up a brand new job, but I never imagined how difficult it would be to find that new position.  For the last part of 2012 and into 2013 I looked and looked......and found nothing.  I was receiving unemployment at the time so that cushioned the blow a little.  I'll admit, it was sort of nice at first.  I didn't have to get up early, and I could do whatever I wanted to do each day.  My schedule was my own.  Like I said, it was first.  After the first few weeks I began to realize that sitting at home with the dogs was not all it was cracked up to be.  I love my dogs, and my free time, but no matter how many times I cleaned the apartment or ran errands I just felt so.....unproductive.

It was almost the middle of 2013 when I did finally get a new job.  My friend got me a job with her.  It was a good job with a very flexible schedule.  However, as I've mentioned before, my knees are not the greatest.  This was a very physical job.  We did not mix well.  Within a few weeks my knees were so swollen that I couldn't walk.  I was literally using a cane.  In order to attend a festival with my fiancee's family I had to be pushed in a wheelchair.  Luckily my sister was able to get me a different job with her.  I was working with kids, so it was still sort of physical, but not nearly so much that my knees couldn't handle it.

Things seemed to be going well.  I was in the final stages of wedding planning, and had a steady job.  Things were looking up for this girl.  Things were not what they seemed at that job, but I was offered another position to start immediately after my wedding.  That job was amazing.  In an unfortunate turn of events, however, I had to resign from that position in a relatively short amount of time.  An uncontrolled migraine made it impossible for me to perform my job, and working with management it was decided I could resign rather than being fired as a liability.  Awesome, right.

I've mentioned my run at Kmart in a previous post......and that brings us to now.  Unemployment and I are very familiar with one another right now.  I'm very lucky that my husband makes enough that we can still pay our bills while I'm out of work.  Things would be so much easier for us if I was working, but as I mentioned, there is a third person we have to consider now.  Any job I take now has to be worth it.  I don't want to take a position where my entire paycheck goes to a daycare.  What's the point of that?  If in the end I'm not bringing extra money home, I want to be the one raising my child.  I'm not against daycare at all.  I think it's a great way for kids to socialize and even begin the preschool process while mom and dad are out making a living.  My sisters both work at a daycare, I have in the past.  However, if the only reason I'm going to work is to pay for daycare, that doesn't make much sense to me.

I've applied to a few good jobs that would provide extra income even after paying for daycare.  I applied to one this morning in fact.  However, I'm a few short months away from having a baby.  I know that most employers are not going to want to hire a new girl to only have her take an extended leave just a few months later.  Granted, they can't discount me for employment simply because I'm pregnant, but that would not be the reason they give for not hiring me.  Especially if they have a ton of other completely qualified candidates who don't need leave so soon.

I was watching the news the other day and there was a report about job hunting.  They said to find a good job it's not only about your qualifications, but who you know.  I know that to be true.  In the past I've found several jobs because I knew someone who was already "in".  Unfortunately, out of all the people I know right now, none of them can help.  So, like I said, I will be a stay at home mommy.

I'm trying not to stress about the money and focus on what a gift it is to be able to spend time with my daughter.  I'm so blessed that my husband is very much on board with this.  He's not expecting me to continue to apply for jobs right now.  He's not opposed, but wants me to focus on the special little lady that will be coming into our lives this summer.  If I find a job before she's born, great.  If not, I'm exactly where I'm meant to be.  This stretch of unemployment is for a reason.  I've always wanted to be a published writer and devote more time to this blog.  While I know my free time will soon be occupied, maybe this is my opportunity.  Maybe I'm meant to be home for my daughter (and any future children).  Maybe just maybe this unemployment is not a blow to my professional life, but a vital opportunity for my and my family's future.  Guess I'll find out.