After yesterday's National Housewives Day, I started thinking about how truly lucky I am to be able to stay at home with my kids. Of course, Buddy is in school, but Sissy won't start preschool until the Fall of 2010.
Buddy was born 3 months before his due date (2lbs, 5oz), spent 6.5 weeks in the NICU and came home weighing in at 3lbs, 12oz. I had taken my maternity leave after he was born and my employers at the time were kind enough to give me 12 fully paid weeks at home after he was released from the NICU.
I did some typing and various things from home for them. Then, the time came when we had to make a decision. 12 weeks had gone by and he was still only 5lbs, 5oz. Obviously, day care wasn't an option.
My parents would have cared for him, but he had so many doctors appointments, physical therapy appointments - he was still tethered to his heart/apnea monitor, too. We felt like that was too much of a burden on them.
So, we ran the numbers and realized that after taxes, I was only bringing in about $500 a month. It just wasn't worth it. He was OUR baby. I wanted to raise him.
The Evil Twin had a steady job with good insurance (he has that same job today, I think he's going on 17 years with it...), so even though I have a college degree and the Evil Twin does not, in every year that we both worked, he out-earned me anyway, so the decision was made for me to stay at home, indefinitely.
Buddy started pre-school, then Kindergarten and we started trying to have a 2nd baby. It took almost 2 years and 3 miscarriages, but I finally got pregnant with Sissy. She was born in February, halfway through Buddy's 2nd grade year.
Over the years, I've done some work from home, but nothing steady. I've lost my ability to file for social security disability because I haven't worked (outside the home) in over 10 years. All because I valued my family more. That's a nice "how do you do?", don't you think?
We've managed to get by just fine. We don't have lofty ideals or needs. If I can find a way to cut corners, we do it. I can pinch a penny until it screams uncle.
I am very grateful.
Bruise Watch 2009, day 3 (but I got the bruise at some point last week, so it could be day 9 or something).
Nice, huh? Also, yesterday, when we returned home from picking up Buddy at school, we found this leaf bug on the door by the carport. I had to get a pic:
Buddy actually touched it and it didn't run away! We love opportunities to explore nature and talk about the beauty that surrounds us every day.