Just before we left for vacation, a job I had been counting on fell through.
As it turned out, however, it was probably best that the job did not work out. For one thing, I got to take my first non-working vacation in years. For another thing, I took the opportunity to take a hard look at my plans for the coming school year.
Was the work-at-home schedule that I had planned actually reasonable? (Not really.) Did I actually want to be taking the Critter to and from school every day? (Not really — the daily commute alone was making my schedule seem daunting.) So I’m reworking my schedule, and we’re considering various options for child care and the Critter’s schooling.
In my five years as a freelancer and nearly four years as a work-at-home mother, I have learned nothing if not flexibility. Not only do jobs come and go — most of my freelancing gigs last a few weeks or months at most — but our family’s needs are always changing.
My original plans for the coming year would have made sense for our family as it was last year — or even as it was just a few months ago. But now that I’m ready to end my so-called maternity leave and take on more work, I have a bright, alert, five-month-old Gnome!
Of course, my new plan for the coming year will likely not work for the following year. In fact, perhaps I’ll be finding the need to revise the plan by January or February — or earlier — or later. We’ll just have to see. Indeed, the key to my flexibility as a work-at-home mother is to pay attention — and really see what’s going on in our family. What are the children needing? What is my husband needing? What am I needing? What needs to change so that we all are thriving?
For now, though, I have other questions on my mind. Should we keep the Critter in his school, but on a more limited schedule? Or will we get a space in a local preschool coop? Or what might homeschooling look like for us? And how will my new schedule actually work out in practice? I don’t know, but one way or another, I’m going to find out.
Even now, I’m still a fool!
In what ways have you recently had to adjust your plans in order to meet your and your family’s needs?