Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Great Debate

For the last couple weeks I have been engaging in "the Great Debate" with myself - to work or not to work?

I left a full time job when my son was about 6 months old. The leadership was changing and I wasn't sure it was the right place for me any more. Around the time I left, I started doing some consulting work, which I was able to do from home. I wrote 5 units of adult Sunday school curriculum over 5 years. I worked under a Lily grant, helping social service agencies assess how well they were doing their work. I subcontracted with a friend who was working on some federal grants, doing some of his data analysis and reporting. I worked part time for a local branch of Big Brothers Big Sisters. When my son started kindergarten, I taught part time at his school and filled in some hours with subbing. This year I have been subbing, but usually not more than once or twice a week.

So, honestly, there haven't been many moments when I haven't been working. But it has mostly been from home or when my son has been in school and I have been just down the hall from him.

Then I got an email from a friend asking me to consider a full time job. I was torn. Work means money - a precious commodity in this economy and something my family could use right now. But work also means walking away from summers and school breaks with my son, and walking away from the students I have grown to love over the last two years spent subbing in almost every class in the building. I wasn't sure how my son would react to not having me around like he's been used to. This choice seemed monumental - a complete shift in where I thought my life was going. I wasn't sure I was ready.

After prayer and consultation with family and friends, I interviewed for the position. I start my new part-time job today. 

Part-time seemed like a good compromise for our family and I think I will be able to do the work they want done during the hours my son is at school. Our summers will be different, but we decided as a family to go ahead and make this change. I am excited about the work to be done and the potential in this opportunity. So today marks a new season for our family.

Have you dealt with "the Great Debate" - work or home or some combination? How did you make your choice?

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