Thursday, June 25, 2015

Big Changes Ahead

In October of 2012, my husband's company laid off his entire division. In the space of one phone call, we went from stable, steady, and predictable to the land of unemployment.

At first, my husband did the usual job search. Emails, phone calls, employment agencies, the works. Nothing turned up.

After a while, he decided to pursue a long-time dream of owning his own computer repair business, and that has been his occupation for the past two years.

My husband has learned a lot, and he has had a wonderful experience of learning and growing in a way that only independent employment can generate. It's been a great growing experience.

But despite that, the business has not developed into a self-sustaining income. And over the past half-year, my prayers have degenerated into one disorganized mess of, "Lord, please get us out of this mess!" In other words, please make this business succeed, or please provide some other source of income.

This past week, God answered our prayers.

On Monday, my husband ran into a friend who mentioned that he was hiring for new positions with his company. On the spur of the moment, my husband asked, "How about me?"

On Wednesday he interviewed for the position. Twenty minutes later, he was hired. In thirty-six hours, we went from owning a struggling small business back to the corporate world.

I think I'm still in a state of shock.

When my husband was laid off, it took about a year to get used to having daddy home. It was honestly a very difficult adjustment. And I know that having daddy go back to the corporate world is going to be a similar shock, and mostly likely a much harder one. There are lots of perks to having daddy home, and we are going to lose those.

Additionally, the children hardly remember a world in which daddy has not been home. The littles, indeed, have never known anything different. And before we had daddy home full-time, he had a job that had two work-from-home days per week. So it's been many, many years since we were in the full-time corporate world.

For us, this is (at least temporarily) the end of a dream. When my husband first came home and we discovered how different it was to do life together, we decided that we infinitely preferred to have daddy home. Starting a small business was as much about having daddy home as it was about the desire to be independently employed.

That dream is on hold for now, and I know that it is going to be challenging for our family to adjust to having very little time with daddy at home. I think that both my husband and I have a long-term goal to have him back at home again, if it ever becomes possible.

But for now, this job is a godsend. We knew that something had to change, and we are so thankful for God's provision for our family.

The job makes about 75% of the salary that my husband made before he was laid off. Our family size has doubled in that time, so this is definitely not riches! But it is much better than we could have expected after nearly three years of unemployment, and we are very thankful for it.

In the few weeks that we have before my husband's start-date, we are scurrying to finish up several things:

* We're trying to work on household projects.

* We're trying to cross items off of our to-do list.

* We're rearranging our weekly schedule so that my husband's evenings are clear to be with his family (instead of running errands like he often does now).

* I am rearranging my schedule so that some daily items like children's baths can be done before daddy gets home in the evening (again, to clear daddy's evening schedule).

I am also trying to rearrange my head into the mindset of operating more independently again. Frankly, I'm spoiled. I'm used to the luxury of having my husband available for help. I need to get used to single parenting during the day, not having help during pregnancy (ack!), and running my own errands. (I am the world's laziest errand runner.)

Similarly, my husband is also used to having me around. And he will be getting reaccustomed to traffic, commuting, work politics, and set hours.

This is daily reality for most families, and we'll be rejoining that reality.

Some day, we hope to have another opportunity to have daddy working from home. For now, we'll be working on regaining some stability (health insurance, yay!) and rebuilding our finances.

In the meantime, I will most likely have even less time for this blog than I usually do! Thus, you'll know why I'm not around if I'm more than usually absent-minded with regard to keeping up this blog.

Mamas out there with work-outside-the-home husbands, any tips for keeping sane? I can use your advice!


  1. You have every bit of my sympathy for liking life with Daddy home! My husband's work schedule is erratic, so here and there we get many days with him gone and then we get many days with him home. I love it when he's home! I miss him terribly when he's gone. My sister's husband teaches school (and they homeschool :) ), so after he's been home for the summer it always takes her a period of time to get used to having him gone. Daddies are wonderful!!!

    Be patient with yourself and the kids. You'll find your groove. :)

    In the mean time--congratulations to your husband on his new job!!!! And isn't it a miracle that God answers prayers?!?!

    1. Thank you, Anne! Yes, I'm all about having daddy at home! We have talked about the fact that we hope to have him back home after our finances stabilize/recover and we're able to talk about trying this whole thing again. It's going to be an interesting couple of years!! :)

  2. Congratulations! I know we've had many instances of those prayers that have become just a plea to just 'do something - anything - God'. When you reach that moment when He moves it always is unexpected and unsettling and ultimately just what you need. ((HUGS))

    So life with Daddy working outside the home regularly - yeah, everyone will have an adjustment. I would shift routines that you can now, so bathing begins happening during the day, you figure out an errand day/time to combine things into. Also, meal plan really well for those first few weeks back - even consider freezer cooking. You are going to be very much in demand with the kids when Daddy is gone and won't have as much time at first for cooking.

    Put a "pick up before daddy comes home" routine in place too. Play it up with the kids, that you're doing something special to welcome daddy home and that they can do it.

    If your husband is like mine, on stressful work days he'll need a few minutes in the house without the kids or momma clamoring for his attention, so maybe consider making a routine that he comes in for hugs and kisses and then escapes to change out of work clothes or to take a quick shower. I'm usually worse than the kids...ahem.

    1. Tristan, thank you for the encouragement and the good suggestions! I have brought up each of your suggestions to my husband, and we have written them into our new schedule - which we will be starting tomorrow (two weeks of practice). I'll let you all know how it goes - thanks!! :)


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