Movin' on up

Bella's little body does amazing things. It crawls over people to get to whatever object she wants at the moment. It bangs on the window and tries to wriggle out the door. It waves, claps, clucks.

And increasingly, it walks. She's not ready for a 5K, but she's definitely taking some major steps. Billy counted 17 yesterday. Yes, that's correct - he counted each tiny, hesitant, wobbly little step. I believe those 17 steps got her approximately 2 feet from her starting point. And yes, we had the urge to throw a party afterwards. We've yet to get it on video, mainly because she recognizes the whir and beep of the camera and immediately loses focus.

Javier's accomplishing a lot these days, as well. He has begun writing and illustrating his own chapter books. He's even managed to end some of them with something other than a HUGE MONSTER JUMPS OUT AND KILLS THEM! The End. His most recent book features bike riders and is very biographical. Every day he comes home and begs to ride his bike somewhere only an adult could manage: a friend's house, Walmart, San Francisco.

Unfortunately, I got some news today that may make it harder to remain as intensely aware of everything my children are doing. I found out that my company is killing my publication. That leaves me with two choices: Find another job or piece together freelance jobs that will keep us on track financially.

I'm not making any big moves yet, but it definitely brings my earning potential into sharp focus. Sure, I could freelance - but can I do it full time with my monkey on the prowl? This is the same monkey that I have to fight to keep off the laptop - you know, the laptop that I depend on for my portion of our daily bread.

Reality check: I could go back to work, bring in double or triple my current income, and avoid worrying about deadlines, debts, and getting work accomplished while simultaneously feeding, changing, rocking and marveling over a baby. But that would mean hiring someone else to do that for me - whether it's a nanny, an in-home childcare provider or a daycare.

And while I know first hand what a wonderful job others do in caring for children (hello, Javier spent his formative years in daycare), I really love knowing the ins and outs of the kids' days. I think this stems from knowing that Bella is our last baby. There won't be another opportunity to spend every waking moment with her, to watch her grow from baby to big kid.

Also factoring into this equation is that I'm in such a better place both emotionally and financially than when Javi was a baby. I had to outsource his care so that I could provide for us. This time around, Billy and I are working together to keep me home without the fear of the poor house.

So, part of me says (in the immortal words of Tim Gunn) MAKE IT WORK! Keep freelancing even if it means working a 30-40 hour work week ... because at least I'm home with the monsters and I'm honing my writing skills while working with a great group of gals. But the other part of me says YOU COULD WORK SMARTER! Go into a job 40 hours per week and then be done. Have your evenings and weekends to spend with the kids without the pressure/pressing worry of the next deadline, the next article idea, the next source and who's called back and when will you transcribe that 30 minute interview?

I don't know what to do. There are options and I don't have to make a snap decision. Billy and I have decided to see how things fall with my company because they are offering me other jobs to make up for the loss of my baby/pub. Does anyone have any insight/advice/job offers they want to shoot my way? :)


  • Stroll

    Hey Boo Boo. Still working on something for you. Having some "what the crap do I do now" moments myself. We have to catch up soon. I'm in NC by the way until Monday.

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