I read a great book a few months ago called “Home-Alone America : Why Today’s Kids Are Overmedicated, Overweight, and More Troubled Than Ever Before” by Mary Eberstadt. Reading this made me want to thank my parents all over again for making the necessary sacrifices so that Mom could stay home with us when we were growing up.
Unfortunately, our economy is no longer geared towards single-income families, which makes the burden greater upon those of us who choose to stay home to raise our kids. I understand why so many moms feel they have to return to work — either to “get some use out of that expensive degree” or just to help pay the bills. I wish that we could say “well, if we cut back a little, I can stay home permanently” but that is simply not the case. Where do you cut back when you don’t live extravagantly? We have an older home that we’re remodeling so as to save money; we shop at Target, Wal-Mart, thrift stores and resale shops. I cook as much as possible (it’s been more difficult this past year, what with the remodel and the new baby), but I intend to buy in bulk, cook once a week and can tomatoes & fruit this year. This will enable us to save more, but time is also a factor.
So we’ve come to the decision that I’m going to have to return to work, at least on a part-time basis. And after lots of prayer and discussion, it looks like medical coding & billing will be the best option. Once I am certified and have appropriate experience, I’ll be able to work from home. Flexibility is key, since George’s schedule is so varied. If he’s on afternoon shift, I can work in the morning while he watches the boys. When he’s on days, I can work in the afternoons & evenings.
So I’m beginning the arduous process of applying for financial aid. Fortunately, there are a lot of grants and scholarships available to those pursuing education in the medical field, so we’ll see what is available.