To Stay Or To Work

I always imagined myself as a working mom. Its how I was raised. My parents both worked outside the home. Its how I imagined myself, especially after the time and money I invested in myself entering EMS (Emergency Medical Services). With 10 years in EMS and plans of completing my Paramedic training, I couldn’t see myself doing anything else.

When we moved to Texas from New Hampshire with just the cash in our pocket (that’s a story for another day), we had planned on my husband working for a bit to get us on our feet. I would then start the process of transferring my EMS license. Well that plan hit a small snag. A 9 month snag.

The very week we arrived in Texas we discovered I was pregnant with our first son! A miracle in its own (yet another story for another day), but now my plans had to change. A high risk pregnancy, first time mom anxiety (panic attack landed me in the ER at 13 weeks), and hip pain that made walking very difficult, meant that for the time being I was staying home.

My goal was still to get back to work, but my long term goals had changed. I had dreamed of becoming a Flight Medic. Trying to pursue that dream would mean a lot more schooling. Something I just didn’t see happening without putting my son in daycare. After he was born, I had mixed feelings about returning to work. I missed it but I also did not want to leave my infant in a daycare or with a nanny. I had been abused as an infant by child care workers, and I did not want my child to endure that. I really applaud the great child care workers that are out there. I certainly do not want to group all child care workers together. I worked with children as an LNA (Licensed Nursing Assistant) for many years. Its not an easy job, but very rewarding for those that care about what they do. As with all professions there are bad apples and great shiny apples! Unfortunately the horror stories are what make the news, and there are plenty. For me personally, I did not want to take the chance, hoping the person caring for my child is the shiny apple.

So I stayed home for the first 18 months. Then I was offered an EMS job! Luckily the pay was about equal to my husbands salary, and he was unhappy with his job. So we switched roles. Sort of. I was the active stay at home mom, playing on the floor, teaching letters and numbers, growing my sons vocabulary and taking walks through the park. My husband was the “I made it through the day and we are both alive” stay at home dad. For someone who was never really around children much besides an occasional visit from cousins and their kids, he did the best he could with the little knowledge on child rearing he had. I got multiple “what do I do” calls almost every day. Some were rather funny to me, but emergencies to him.

One evening he calls me several times in a panic. I couldn’t always answer my phone in the ambulance so I had to wait until I had a spare minute to answer. My son had tripped over his own feet and fell backwards, hitting his head. My husband was 30 seconds from going to the hospital. I laughed. “Kids fall darlin’! He’s fine!” Fast forward, our son is almost 4 years old and our youngest is about to turn 1, when they falls they now get the “well I told you not to do that” look. He’s come a long way in parenting!

This lasted 3 months, then my husband was offered a job we could not pass up. A salary much more than I could make in my position. So we switched back!

I continued to look for jobs that would allow me to stay home and do something I was passionate about. Finally I was introduced to Usborne Books & More by a friend. After a year of purchasing books from her, I took a leap and joined the team. I love reading, and I’m so glad my boys love books as much as I do.

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