Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Two Thousand Dollars

Changes are coming.  The air is starting to get that twinge about it and there are even tree leaves falling down the block.

Change is coming to my family too.

Ever since I took my job, I've up front about my desire to work days and how it would benefit my little family - less reliance on Grandma's Babysitting Service (more self-reliance on the childcare scene is a necessity for thriving in a house of our own, in our minds), normal hour bedtime routines, more home cooked meals, etc.  I thought I would have to wait about a year for something to come up, but it looks very promising that I day shift will be coming open soon and my supervisors came to me first about it.

We've been weighing all our choices - the pros listed above, and the cons; daycare or more appropriately the cost of daycare, working opposite schedules for a while, etc., etc., etc.

One of the choices that I thought would be the most difficult to make, turned out to be the easiest.  I originally thought the morning line would be 100%, but alas it is 90% which means I get 90% of the pay that I could be making.  Daycare (1/2 time for a couple of hours in the afternoon) will be a set rate so being 100% wouldn't mean more daycare costs, which would amount to over 2k extra each year (at my current salary) and who wouldn't love an extra 2k in the bank when they're hoping to be come house owners?

But then I did the math.  Being 90% means I get two days extra off from work a month, give or take.  This might not seem like a lot, until you add it up.  That extra day every other week adds up to almost an entire month of extra time I get to spend with my son (husband too if he's off).

Work mother or SAHM, what would you take if offered - two thousand dollars a year or an extra month a year of time with you kids, particularly when they're young.

Needless to say, it wasn't a hard decision.

My husband and I will keep working hard, one day there will be a comfortable amount coming to the bank each month, one day it won't cost 1/4 of that monthly amount to send our kids somewhere safe and encourage when we're not around, one day there will be better schedules, but what won't come around again after it is gone are those extra days.

So we'll cut a few corners, eat out a little less, pack our lunches, we'll go to the library and wear out our shoes and pants and I'll know that when I'm old and on my way to the next adventure I won't be wishing I had chosen the two thousand dollars.

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