(Hi, I’m still talking about career stuff and work situations and whatnot, so if you’ve had enough of this blather may I recommend visiting this website instead, which, if you’re like me, will leave you shaking your fist at the screen and mumbling darkly about how that is too a wizard, you know a goddamn wizard when you see one.)

I have wasted a big chunk of my life succumbing to inertia. Whether it was drinking, not getting in shape, sticking with an unrewarding job because it was too much work to make a change, not pursuing my personal interests beyond cursory distractions — it’s only been in the last few years that I really feel like I’ve started to break out of my holding patterns.

A big part of that has to do with parenthood. For me, the sea changes parenthood brought to my life have been so challenging it’s helped kick my ass out of my comfort zone. It’s reminded me that big rewards often require big sacrifices, it’s helped me realize that I am able to accomplish so much more than I tend to give myself credit for.

For the first time I truly believe I can do more, careerwise, than I’m doing now. I believe in my abilities and I believe I am marketable. I believe that given the right set of circumstances I could take the big terrifying step into freelancing full time — and for once, fully owning my professional success. My career aspirations boil down to this: I want to get out of it what I put into it. I believe the path for me to achieve that goal is working for myself.

There’s little to complain about with my job as it stands. I have a good salary, I get cushy benefits, I have a completely relaxed and malleable schedule. If I were to make any big adjustments I’d have to face all kinds of challenges, starting with the financial ones — if I made less than I do now but spent the same on childcare, the impact on our budget would be significant, maybe even insurmountable. I know from my experience being unemployed or on maternity leave that being at home full time has the potential to make me unhappy: lonely, resentful, and downright weird. I harbor no illusions that eliminating the physical separation between work and home would be without its difficulties when it comes to maintaining a sense of schedule and focus.

On the one hand, I think, why even consider trading comfort for the unknown? Why take on the dangerous possibility of making a change for the worse, especially when I’ve got my family to consider?

On the other, the knowledge that success takes hard work and risk.

I could tell myself that I’ll pursue my dreams at some later date, maybe when the kids are older, but why? There is no better time for me. I am strong and capable and I can do it all — I can be a great mom and I can make a happy life for my family and I can delight employers and I can run my own business. I know this.

I also know this: you can’t sit back and wait for good things to happen. When it comes to anything worth doing, you have to be willing to step up. I’ve gotten my shit together in so many ways over the last few years. The question I’m mulling over is, what else am I capable of?

Do you have a story about taking on risk in order to pursue a dream? I’d love to hear it.

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mixette
mixette
15 years ago

When I turned 30 I decided I wanted to go to graduate school in a certain very competitive program at a top university in CA. I’m not a super-outgoing person AT ALL, but I just decided to give it my best shot and make it happen. I even asked the CEO of my company (a big computer one; rhymes with “smell”) to write me a letter of recommendation, and he did! I was accepted, left the boyfriend and dog (sob) for 2 years. I worked so incredibly hard, but it was a fantastic experience and has completely changed my life.

In the next year I expect that your experience will sound just like Susan @6:15am. YOU can do it.

Holly
15 years ago

I got a 14/16 on the Dog/Wizard . . .and I see LOTS of us did. Your readers are a savvy bunch of broads so clearly some dogs ARE wizards.

Anne
Anne
15 years ago

To repeat what a few others have said: the most rewarding things I’ve done were the riskiest. Probably the biggest leap of faith was meeting someone who lived a time zone away from me, being long distance for the better part of a year, and then getting my company to agree to let me move away, live with him, and just work over the internet. Huzzah for online work, is what I say. It hasn’t been easier – there are days when I miss going out for lunch and office happy hours – but I’m unspeakably glad I did it.

Logistically: it is EXTREMELY difficult to go from having money direct deposited into your account on a regular basis and employer-provided health insurance to being a consultant who has to wait for a check to arrive in the mail (and god help you if the only person who can sign the check is away for three weeks) and having to cough up the money for self-insurance. I’d check to see if you can get covered under your husband’s job for the insurance and figure out what rules you’ll establish for the money situation (I kept on digging into my savings every time I came short, figuring I’d “pay it back later.” Not something that actually happened).

Melissa
Melissa
15 years ago

Well – my experience doesn’t exactly apply but it supports your idea. In my early twenties, I found myself in a so-so relationship with a very nice guy. Long story short – I was absolutely miserable and was just believing that I couldn’t do better and that things had to stay the same. I was terrified. Well – one day I literally woke up and told him that I couldn’t marry him (we were engaged for a few months). He thought I had lost my mind and called my parents to tell them so, etc. My parents supported me, thank God, but I found it was tremendously hard to leave. In this in between period, I drove around crying and seriously thought about driving into a tree…scary. I didn’t eat for weeks and lost tons of weight. The whole thing was awful and hard and very humbling. But after a time, things got better. I got a great new job and attitude. Started making better money and could support myself. Ended up making lots of new friends and moved to NYC. Met my unbelievably wonderful husband and now have two amazing kids. If I had stayed…..I don’t even want to think about it. If moving on is on your mind, Girl – it is time to go for it. You have fabulous potential and you will be a better person, wife and mom for it. Even if it is super-hard….You already know that. Can’t wait to see what you do…it’s inspiring! :)

Liz
Liz
15 years ago

When i was 26, with a B- in high school chem, a C- in trigonometry, and a B in the single college science class I had taken on the way to my liberal arts degree, I decided I wanted to be a doctor.

I remember vividly the night I made the decision: I was tossing and turning and having the following conversation with myself:

Voice of Reason: What the hell am I going to do with my life?

Inner Voice: Be a doctor.

Voice of Reason (whining): But that’ll be really HARD.

Inner Voice: Yeah. You can do it.

2 years of premed science classes later, I was admitted to a top-10 med school. 4 years after that, I started an Ivy League residency. 3 years later, I’m a general internist taking care of some of the poorest, least educated, and neediest people in the country, and I love it. I have some quibbles here and there about the specifics of my job, but I have never, not even for a second, regretted my decision to switch careers or to spend nearly a decade getting qualified to do what I do.

Melissa
Melissa
15 years ago

My husband did this very thing…he decided to start working from home/working for himself a month after we found out I was pregnant with our first child. It’s do-able…he’s making good money. For the most part he is happy. However, due to his decision I had to go back to work in order to maintain our health benefits. If it’s something that you believe you can do, and that will make you happy, just be sure your husband is 100% behind you. Resentments have been forming here because I’m not 100% behind my husband’s decision…he gets to do what he wants to do, but I don’t. I know it sounds childish but after awhile it starts to grate on you…

Just food for thought!

mnerva
mnerva
15 years ago

Hey Linda,
I know I don’t comment often, but I wanted to tell you that my vote is to go for it. I am in a job that I hate right now. I mean it is seriously a soul-sucking place to work. We even have a “table of negativity” for Jebus’ sake. I need to get out, and reading this just makes me more sure of that. I’m putting in my two weeks notice tomorrow.

You are a great writer, and have only improved in the 6-7 years that I have been reading your blog (can’t believe it’s been that long). So I think that you would be very successful at freelancing. AND I want you to write a book, dammit.

On a total sidebar: I know you are a big Anne Tyler fan. Have you ever read “Digging to America”? I just bought it and would love a thumbs up or down from you.

kristylynne
kristylynne
15 years ago

I’m a freelance writer. I took the plunge eight years ago. It was good timing. I’d just moved in with my husband and he had a decent salary. We had a small mortgage, no kids yet. The insurance thing was a bitch at the time, but then we got married and that problem went away.

My first clients were from the company where I’d just quit. It grew from there – clients came out of the woodwork. At first I was horribly worried that the work would go away at any moment. But it never did. I’ve made a good living at it. I’ve never had to seek work or advertise … it just seems to come. When I hit a dry spell, the phone rings and voila, a job.

I would never go back to work for the “man.” Best thing I ever did.

I can tell from your blog you have talent. I say, go for it.

Kath
15 years ago

Five years ago, I was 44 years old and newly married. I quit my (good) job of 20 years, sold my/our house, sold a lot of my stuff and moved with my husband to a new town because he had a great career opportunity. I had never lived anywhere else before, I had spent my entire life in one city. I took a risk, leaving family and friends not because of a job, but to maintain a dream come true, something I had been dreaming about for a long time, a good & healthy relationship. I have never been happier.

As you say, there’s no time like the present. Do it!

Cali911Gal
Cali911Gal
15 years ago

In 1998 I took on part time contracted work from home for the Evil Empire. In 2000, that turned into an opportunity to move to Redmond and seek my riches at corporate HQ. I left the security (albeit low paid security) of 12+ years in Public Safety to venture north, leaving my family behind, all in an effort to be part of the cash cow that was the Evil Empire. Turns out, my position was being phased out even as I drove north, and I didn’t have the background, education, or mad leet skillz to compete with chosen ones half my age :) I did my 6 months there, gave it a good go, and decided to return back to my old life.

I DO NOT regret it for an instant. I grew immensely. I gained courage I never knew I had. I came to realize my true calling in life (which happens to be public safety). I returned back to my old job a much happier and better person, grateful for what I have. But it took me leaving and trying something new to see that what I had wasn’t so bad. Since that time, I’ve promoted twice and gotten 8 more years under my belt, and am over half way to retirement :)

Linda, follow your dreams. You won’t know until you try. If for some reason working from home drives you batshit, you have marketable skills that can take you back into the corporate world. Try it. Give it your all. If it doesn’t work, at least you tried. Don’t sit and wonder, for the rest of your life, “what if”.

Just.Do.It.

zdoodlebub
15 years ago

All I have to say is good for you. It would be so easy to stay where you are. Thanks for the reminder that I also don’t give myself enough credit and I can do more.

Amy
Amy
15 years ago

I stayed at my part time office job entirely too long because it was comfortable. But then I got unexpectedly laid off and everything changed. I now work from home doing freelance websites, writing and marketing materials – and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
The money is less, yes. But I save time and money by not having to commute and I get to see my family more. I have a sitter to watch the kids while I work, so they’re home with me and I see them, but I can concentrate on my job. I also have the freedom to work on weekends and in the evenings when my husband can watch the kids for free.
Before taking this leap, I never gave myself enough credit to think I had the skill and creativity to do this work professionally. But I do, and I’m doing it. And loving it.

:::::::::::: wife mom maniac ::::::::::::

You might like this guy’s blog, it’s all about this. http://financeyourfreedom.com/blog/

justmouse (or Chaosmomm..whatever)

i take no risks, career or otherwise. it’s probably why i find my life stagnant.

also, i got 13/16 on that wizard quiz. i would have done better, but i second guessed myself.

jonniker
15 years ago

I used to make a lot of money. Like, a scary amount of money. I had a “great” job and whatnot, and it was all happy happy, joy joy on paper, but I fucking hated every second of it, and oh, by the way, had NO EFFING TIME to enjoy all the money I was making.

I quit for a lesser paying job that I LOVED, then quit to start a freelance career, which I also love. I wouldn’t go back to the MONEY MONEY MONEY game in a million years. Yes, this life is hard, and yes, it impacted our bottom line like, IN A HUGE HORKING WAY, but the quality of life and incremental improvements in almost every aspect of my whole person more than make up for it.

The thing with a full-time freelance business, and I know you know this, but a lot of people don’t, is that to make a decent living, you have to take on unglamorous projects. I think a lot of people think freelance writing is all blogging and fun stuff, but it isn’t. The other stuff pays a shitload better.

H
H
15 years ago

I felt pressure to climb the corporate ladder and the moment that pursuing my career made sense in terms of my position, was also the moment I had my first child. I tried it and couldn’t do it. I was in a meeting about my career when my manager and I were interrupted by an urgent call from my daycare provider because my son had his umpteenth ear infection. They needed me to come and get him. I left the meeting, got my son and the next day, I told my manager I couldn’t do it. I needed to stay where I was for my sanity’s sake. I’m a fairly bright person with a strong desire to be the best, so it was very hard to step back in my career but I needed to do it and I haven’t regretted it once. I can’t say I’m super fulfilled at my job but I feel like I have a good work-life balance and am happy I was “here” for my kids. My son is now 20 – hard to believe that was 19 years ago. Time flies – enjoy your kids when they’re home with you!

amber
15 years ago

You can’t tell me the second one down on the right side isn’t a wizard. Look at those ears! Seriously. Obviously I suck, though – my score was 11/16. Pretty sure that’s a failing grade.

Melanie
Melanie
15 years ago

You totally named this blog post after a Firefly episode, didn’t you?

Josh
Josh
15 years ago

Dude, seriously Sundry, you got it going on. You’re wicked talented, and trust me when I say that I don’t just hand out compliments. I think you could do great at whatever you put your mind to.

You want an inspirational story? (or possibly demotivational depending on how you look at it) I met a girl on the internet. I liked her. I wanted her. I got her. End of story.

OK technically I still have to deal with a potential prison stint and the tiny little matter of crossing the border as a multiple felon, and moving my entire life 800 miles away to a different country, and finding work in a completely different market, and getting used to different weather and food and stupid ass unions. Sure we still have to find a place to live together, and we haven’t exactly told her family about my criminal status, and sure I have no higher education, and sure at the moment I can’t support two people let alone a child or children. But I found the girl of my dreams and won her over, so as far as I’m concerned the hard part is over. All the rest of that shit is just red tape.

Same thing with you. You already got past the hard part. You have wicked skills. You have an awesome family. You beat alcoholism. You lost all kinds of baby weight and turned into some crazy fitness ninja. And to top it all off you like zombies, the coolest of all monsters. (btw, you ought to go check out a game called The Last Stand 2. It’s fucking swee-heet) Patching together the rest of the things you want in life should be a walk in the park for you after all that other shit. You got this. Don’t fret about the little stuff man, it ain’t nothin’ but a chicken wing on a string.

stephany
15 years ago

On the inside, I’m like, “Yeah, Sister! What are you waiting for?!” But my sensible side, and what I have practiced, is to pad the savings account ahead of time. It does kinda sound like you have the best of both worlds right now. Either way, as long as you’re writing, we’ll be reading!!

Missy
Missy
15 years ago

You are such a great writer, and obviously so moti-fricking-vated, that if you decided to freelance full-time, I bet work would fall right into your lap.

That said, I think you have so many different options. A few years ago when I was working full-time and going bonkers trying to squeeze my freelance writing in during nights and weekends, I decided I wanted to find more time to write. I was single at the time and too scared to just quit cold turkey to freelance, so I asked my boss to let me cut down to 30 hours/week and she agreed. It was a great compromise for me — some tightening of the belt required for sure, but it didn’t put me into financial ruin. And since I telecommute most of the time, I don’t have the dreaded daily commute.

Have you considered anything like that? Asking to telecommute or reduce your hours even further?

Or maybe for you the 100% leap of faith approach is the answer. I have a friend who quit cold turkey and is now making double the money as a freelancer — I bet it would be that way for you, too.

Regardless, you have so many options, and you’ve shown that you have the talent and dedication to make it work no matter what. Can’t wait to find out what happens. I really enjoy reading about your life. Good luck. :-)

Kim
Kim
15 years ago

I do have a story, even though I am showing up late to the party.

4.5 years ago I lived in D.C. I am an esthetician and was working at very large and successful day spa. He is a computer guy (solutions integrator) that gets to live your dream of working at home with occasional travel. We had a pretty easy life, made fantastic money, and were miserable. We were seeking out an investment opportunity and looked at things like apartment complexes (Can you say SLUMLORD?) and laundry mats (much classier).

My husband went off to a Microsoft conference in San Diego and got antsy, so he left to visit his cousin about 2.5 hours away in Arizona. He was driving around this tumbleweed town lamenting to me that this too was another failed hunt for some place stable to grow our little nest egg. He had given up and was driving to his cousins home when he said, “Oh wait, here’s a day spa, you could work there.” It was kind of a joke, because it was a dinky looking place from afar. Upon closer inspection he found it was closed, and more importantly FOR SALE. 3 days later we owned it, 3 weeks later we lived here, having sold our house in DC within 24 hours, at asking price, no contingencies. (should have asked for more I guess…)

We bought a house sight unseen (ouch, still remodeling after all these years) and put our heads down and plowed forward. I always say if I had time to think about it I wouldn’t have done it, I would have over thought it and freaked myself out to the point of not taking this leap.

2 years after we opened our doors we had outgrown our little spot. We were also attached to a biker bar (great place to party after work, not so much of a mix when stepping over puke trying not to mess up freshly polished toes) There was an addition being built into our shopping center, and we had the opportunity to build our OWN dream design. We also thought with the stress of opening a new location it would be a good time for me to get pregnant. we have now been in this location for 2.5 years and have become the big fish in a small pond that we always dreamed of.

THEN (because we are nuts) we remodeled in May (the same month I gave birth to our daughter)to take on the Aveda brand. Moving boxes and putting together retail displays = ON TIME birthing of the girl. YAY!

I forsee many challenges in our future, it is never easy and always exhausting. The upside is it’s for US and it has stretched my beliefs in what I am capable of and challenged me in ways that FORCED me to grow as a mother, wife, boss, and friend.

I guess I just want to say YOU CAN DO IT. Go with your guts, it sounds like you have a husband that is supportive and smart, and together I am sure you can accomplish whatever you set your mind to. Keep on truckin’!

Oh, and my house always looks like a toddler bomb went off in it. Give up the ghost!

эльдар
15 years ago

Бог кормит птиц, но не сыплет корм им в гнезда.

инна
15 years ago

Мы делили апельсин: много наших полегло.

Ирана
15 years ago

Съел бобра – спас дерево.

TherryTedSibe
15 years ago

Привет !!! :) как вам вчерашний драматический матч между ЦСКА и Спартаком ? ;) Очумелый Футбол !!!

Прошу-Внимания

https://www.sundrymourning.com, админ. Кто писал про последнее китайское предупреждение ? Извини. Я надеюсь мы найдем компромисс ? 1. Поставь на блог-комментирование хорошую каптчу. 2. Пошли урлы своих блогов сюда chezanah@gmail.com и ты избавишься от меня. Ещё раз приношу извинения. издержки производства…

TherryTedSibe
15 years ago

Привет Только что по первому каналу показывали первая серия фильма 12. Каковы ваши ощущения ?

TherryTedSibe
15 years ago

ну да, вполне неплохой пост :P. как думаете, завтра Арсенал победит Манчестер ?
з.ы. жаль по обычному телевидению не посмотришь… :( придётся идти в бар, где есть спутниковое

TherryTedSibe
15 years ago

я думаю сегодня в 15-45 по Москве Арсенал победят Манчестер !
Вот так ! хотя жаль Адебайора не будет :(

Вперёд Арсенал !!!

TherryTedSibe
15 years ago

пока я жив, я буду помнить ваш ресурс :( заношу в букмарки….

buinaanesse
15 years ago

друзья, а как вы думаете, когда наступит дефолт в России ? имхо после нового года :(

Apospishids
15 years ago

Сегодня буду болеть за Московских Армейцев ! Вперёд, ЦСКА ! :D

также, жду не дождусь, 10 декабря. когда Реал Мадрид против нашего Зенита….

Diappeagompox
15 years ago

Незадолго до сегодняшнего ВВС из сектора Израиля было выпущено 60 и минометных снарядов, упала в районе городов и Нетивот , которую в субботу в секторе Газа, ракетным обстрелам со стороны палестинских ни простой, ни сказал министр
Боевики ХАМАС территорию Израиля на авианалет на cektop AFP.

Carter
15 years ago

Приятный блог, добавил в ридер.

Godyears
15 years ago

Интересный блог, добавил в rss-ридер

Aroubsson
15 years ago

Отличные новости, так держать, удачи в будущем.

Aroubsson
15 years ago

Стоит ли ждать обновления?.

Aroubsson
15 years ago

Могу предложить много инфы по данной теме, нужно?.

Aroubsson
15 years ago

Как часто публикуете новости по данной тематике?.

essediatoto
15 years ago

Супер. Спасибо, так давно искал этот материал. Ну просто респектище автору. Никогда не забуду теперь

bellamind
15 years ago

Кризис, говорят, в марте усилится. Хотелось бы знать, кто затеял все это
и как вообще мы докатились до такой жизни.

saunypon
15 years ago

Как дела обстоят с увольнениями в условиях кризиса? И реально ли в условиях кризиса найти работу?

illundskisk
15 years ago

Спасибо

Salulcelp
15 years ago

спасибо очень интересный сайт

effixheseerax
15 years ago

узнал много нового тут

wimiMyday
15 years ago

замечательно

ремонтник
15 years ago

Достаточно интересная и познавательная инфа

Nekssudge
15 years ago

сколько банков еще лопнет в течение кризиса?

Keyncgedy
15 years ago

странно, где то это я уже видел