The kids are grown…now what?

When you and your husband {or significant other} decided to have children did you really think it all out?  When my husband and I agreed that I would stay home with the kids because paying for daycare would just be pointless for us financially, I really didn’t think twice.  I always knew I was going to be a mom…I always knew I wanted to stay home with them too.  I also had big dreams before I had them.  For instance, after I graduated high school, I wanted to open up my own boutique.  I wanted to carry fun and trendy teen/young adult clothing, accessories, and handbags.  Anything that a teen/young adult would want in their wardrobe, I wanted to carry.  I went as far as looking at spaces all around my surrounding home town.  Life threw curve balls at me and I ended up going down a different path.  I am not sad or upset with the path I choose because if I was, that would be saying I wouldn’t want to be a mom to the three beautiful children I have.  I have spent a majority of my adulthood as mom.  I love being mom.  I also started a home-based business {because I needed a creative outlet} and while it is holding its own, I still long for a brick and mortar store.  Which at this time, I know I cannot possibly do, mostly due to finances or I should say, lack there of.

So lets fast forward 14 years.  Now you have been home full-time for a good 12 years.  You no longer have “active” experience {in the real working world that is} and your resume shows a 12 year gaping hole.  You have turned 40+ and now you are faced with…what do I want to do with the second half of my life?  Where do I want to go from here?  Should I go back to school?  If so, what do I go to school for?  Everything that I have learned has been self-taught.  I needed to learn how to build a website, so I learned HTML coding  {not extensive coding, more so the basics}.  I needed to learn how to get my websites visible on Google, Yahoo, etc… so I had to learn how to apply SEO and use proper keywords.  I needed to start a blog, so I learned Blogger and WordPress.  I needed to edit photos, so I learned Photoshop Elements.  I needed to learn how to market my products {which is where my degree in marketing and retail come into play}.  I needed to learn how to do accounting, so I taught myself Quickbooks.  You see, everything I learned, I learned on my own.  I have no technical training, no big certificates to display on my wall, and certainly no degrees.  I have life experience and have had many real-time experiences in business.  I have applied for jobs left and right only to find out that I am either under-qualified or over-qualified.

The only reason I am even entertaining the idea of finding outside work is because my husband is in construction and honestly, this year alone, he has worked about 5 out of the last 10 months.  I cannot continue to live under the day to day stress of wondering if his field is going to pick up.  If his old employers are going to call out of the blue and hire him back on.  I cannot keep up with this stress of not-knowing where the next paycheck is going to come from.  It leaves me with a lot of time to wonder…. “What do I want to do with the rest of my life”?   I might just follow my 14 year old to college…that ought to be fun, huh?  What are your plans after your children are all grown to the point where they don’t necessarily “need” you as much as you “need” them?

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