When I began nursing school, I was a young, 21-year old woman who was eager to heal the world. I wanted to become a travel nurse and work all over the United States. I also never wanted to have children.
Then, after I graduated nursing school, I began working in the field. I loved my job and was still very invested in being the best employee and caregiver possible.
However, soon after starting my new nursing career, I met and fell in love with my husband, and we married in three short months. Nine months later, we had our first child. It’s funny, ironic, and also grounds for a nervous breakdown for someone who’s life just changed in the blink of an eye.
So, back to the drawing board. It was time to consider different options for my new, improved life.
I kept asking myself, “Do I really want to leave nursing?” Part of me knew that I wanted to be the main caregiver for my new bundle of joy. However, I would risk losing my nursing skills and would undoubtedly fall behind in the fast-changing medical field.
The cost of daycare is usually the game changer for many new parents. I know it was for my husband and me. But it wasn’t just the price of daycare that had me worried. The guaranteed “what if’s” seemed to be right up there with our financial worries.
- Who goes home if the baby gets sick?
- What if the baby gets sick a lot?
- Who takes off work to take the baby to their regular check-ups?
Some call it worrying, but I call it planning.
Like many people, I wanted it all—a family and a career. Even if it meant that I had to change my career, I was determined to make it work. That’s when I realized that I needed to become a work-at-home mom.
So, I got to work.
I Got Organized.
First and foremost, I tackled our finances. We cut back on our spending, stuck to a strict budget, and I began couponing.
Next, I created a list that included everything I knew how to do well, whether it was a skill that I acquired from a previous job or something that I considered a hobby.
I Compared My Skills.
Even if you don’t think you could ever make money off of your hobby, it’s still important to include it on this list. Hobbies are also something that you can consider an “expertise.”
Trust me; even the craziest hobbies have money-earning potential. My first writing gig was for an extreme couponing website, where I got to showcase my mad money-saving skills.
On the flip side, I have also been fortunate to find several jobs in which I could utilize my nursing degree. I have written several articles as a freelance writer for nursing-related websites.
I Revamped My Resumes.
You read that right: I had more than one resume. In fact, I had about five resumes saved to my computer. Each resume was for a different type of position: Nursing, clerical, couponing, writing, etc.
That way, I didn’t have to edit my resume each time that I wanted to apply for a different position. I mean, my perspective couponing employers wouldn’t have cared about how well I could draw blood.
I Never Gave Up.
“When One Door Closes, Another One Opens” is a very important reminder for any work-at-home mom.
Although I consider myself extremely lucky to have landed so many work-at-home jobs, I will never forget the struggle that is involved when you’re starting fresh.
I did a lot of “trying.” Some things worked out, and some didn’t. While I’ll admit that I have been discouraged more times than I’d hoped for, I can proudly say that I never gave up.
Although I am no longer in the nursing field, I still keep my nursing license active. I still have my stethoscope and scrubs that I used seven years ago. And I am still interested in the medical field.
I know that I can always go back to nursing, which is comforting. I may start back as a brand new nurse, but there is security in knowing that I chose a field that is in high-demand.
On a personal end note, one thing that I learned when I became a mother is that life is too short to be anything but happy. Raising my children makes me happy and fulfilled, while others find happiness in other avenues in life. So any job, no matter what it is or if it's done at home or outside of the home, is just a job to me. Do what makes you happy—whatever that may be.
Wondering how to become a work-at-home mom? This post will give you an excellent place to start your journey!
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Emily Belcher is the blogger behind TheUnextreme.com, where she enjoys writing about various topics from toxic mold to life as a work at home mom. She also writes for some of the top coupon and nursing websites as a freelance writer and editor. Some of her hobbies include hiking with her husband and young son in beautiful North Carolina, practicing yoga, and reading tarot cards.