Getting Back to Work after Being an At-Home Mom

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I left my career to be a stay at home mom when my daughter was three.  My husband and I worked hard to get into a financial position to make that a reality.  Between the cost of daycare and the hefty taxes on the second income, we were surprised at how quickly we adapted to the loss of income.  Being an at-home mom also allowed us to homeschool for the first year of kindergarten, which we all relished.

Once my daughter was in full-day school, it took me about 2 weeks until I felt the urge to work again.  The dilemma was that none of us wanted to get back to a lifestyle of paying for after school care,  emergency meals out due to lack of planning, and fights about who would stay home with a sick kid.

I knew there was no way I could fit into a schedule at a national company with shifts.  I was available from 8:45 until 2:00, not during Christmas break, or summer.  Sounds like just what you want to hear as an employer, right?  The upside is that I had a sales background and am a responsible person that likes to work.  My solution – a local fancy bakery!  In my cover sheet I laid out the whole situation, and offered that if they needed to slot in a college student to cover when I couldn’t work, I would be happy to give them my hours when they were home for winter break or summer.  It worked!

I really enjoyed the work, the customers and the 50% off discount!  The bakers were a crazy fun bunch.  The money I earned helped us in our last push to pay off the mortgage.  While we were getting our financial house in shape at home, the bakery was headed in the other direction.  Too much debt, creditors calling… you were afraid to answer the phone!  The bakery trimmed back to one location and that seemed to help.  I worked there for 1 year, but no regrets… and I still usually get a discount when I get to the other location!

What I learned from the experience is that even though you may not have the most flexible schedule to offer, an amazing work ethic and people skills go a long way for employers, especially in part-time jobs.  It’s better to be honest up front about your scheduling limitations.  I will bring you up to date on my current employment soon.

Have you returned to work after being a SAHM (or Dad!)?  What did you do to re-enter the workforce?

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9 thoughts on “Getting Back to Work after Being an At-Home Mom

  1. Eva @ Girl Counting Pennies

    One day I hope to be a stay at home Mum too as I think it is important to spend time with your children, help them with their homework, cook, etc. This is what my Mum had done for us, and I am glad she was staying at home looking after us. She got her University degree through distance learning during that time, so it was a win-win for everyone. On a side note, I would love to work in a bakery and get 50% off all their yummy food. Sounds like a dream job to me! 😛

    Reply
    1. healthfulsave Post author

      I do miss that bakery discount! Plus we spent a lot of time standing around drinking coffee and eating broken pastries. My mom stayed home too, or when she worked it was when I was in school. It’s a blessing to have enough income to be able to stay home, and it is worth the budgeting and discipline to make it happen.

      Reply
  2. Country Lady

    I was an at home mom for 19 years. I left being a pharmacy technician when I was pregnant with my first born. Sometimes during those years it was pretty lean, but we did enjoy me having dinner cooked every night and there was no stress of finding a sitter. I went back to work when my daughter was a junior in high school and at least she could help with dinner when I had to work a late shift. I started back to work as a cashier in a grocery store and it was convenient because if I needed a day off to go to a function at school there was always someone willing to cover and make more money. Now I am still part time and I am back to being a pharmacy tech. I can’t say that it is the same as when I did this work years ago, but it does help the budget.

    Reply
    1. healthfulsave Post author

      Oh, I feel for you, MummyPenny… it’s a lot of bits to keep track of every day. Just since getting back to work this Sept I feel like I have to spend a lot more of my free time on organization to keep everything going. I have to make a list of where I am supposed to be after work and what I am making for dinner. Less time to blog too!

      Reply
      1. mrsmummypenny

        I know!! Thank god for anydo app on my mobile!! Im sure ill get better with time..im the queen or organisation at work..I just fail at home!! Def less time to blog and do my website!!

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