Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Employability Project

Welcome to my blog!

My name is Jordan and I am a twenty-something new mom to a wonderful 6-month old baby boy, (who is amazing!) And while I am thoroughly enjoying being a mom I am struggling with the highly controversial debate of what kind of mom to be: a stay-at-home mom or a career mom. For some this question is very cut and dry, however, I think that there are many of us out there who really struggle with this. We love our kids but we love our work.

The mantra of my childhood has always been work hard so you can get a job and so I did. I have spent over 18 years in school to get a "good job" and I have held some sort of a full/part time job or internship since I was 14. I have basically spent my entire life "career" oriented.

But something happened several years ago, I met this guy...and I liked him. When he asked me out, I told him, "I don't want to be your girlfriend because I am focusing on my career," and that worked for a while, but he wore me down, and since he was pretty amazing and I love him, we decided to get married. "First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage..." And here we are.

Well and also...we moved to a new city, in the state that has the highest unemployment rate in the nation AND my current career field (education) isn't particularly looking to hire AND we will be moving back to our old city in 2.5 years AND we want to have another child before we go.

Despite all this, since we moved I have been working and I am currently working (part time) as a contracted tutor for a small local company that supports our area schools. This job has been working well for the past year for several reasons, it's got a flexible school year schedule, it's during the time my husband can be off to watch our son (so no daycare) I really like the people I work with, it's in my career field, I have really gotten to know the ins and outs of our local schools and their curriculum; the pay is an added bonus.

However, I'm bored with it, there isn't a whole lot of opportunity to move up in the company or learn any new skills, the hours are late into the evening, I feel pressured to bring work home or spend unpaid time there, and I'm not really sure I want to stay with teaching. Most importantly, I can't shake the nagging feeling that I am compromising what I want to do for this one short blurb on my resume. I feel like I have been clinging to this position because in this economy - I'd be an idiot to throw a job away! I have no new job to go to, plus, between being with my son all day and working at night (albeit only two days a week right now,) I just haven't had the time to dedicate to a proper job search.

My husband told me I should leave if I wasn't happy; (I love him.)

But - what to do!? I feel like job searching here is kind of fruitless because I don't know what I want to do career-wise. We are going to be moving so soon and we want to have a #2. I feel like this is the perfect time for me to "stay at home" but can I afford a major break in my career!?

So that brought me to the question - can I, or any mother/father/caregiver, really afford a major break in their career? So I went to the natural source of all things wise and knowing - google - and I searched for about a bazillion different things and I found lots of tips to maintain employability while on a career break but had a really hard time finding a person who had documented their experience of taking a significant number of years away from their career to spend as a caregiver and then successfully returning, (especially in this economy!) I'm not just talking about a one-person-did-this blurb because I know this exists but I want documentation, people! (And maybe it's out there...but I'm going to err on the side that google would not fail me.)

So this is me and this is my blog and for the next 2.5 years I'm going to document all of my efforts to maintain my employability while being a stay-at-home mom; in hopes that after all is said and done, I'm going to be "The Employable Mom."


P.S. - I'd really appreciate it if you would follow me and send some love because everyone needs a cheering squad to stay hopefully and motivated! Thanks! Check out my profile for contact info.