So, I am experiencing a dilemma of sorts in my life. I love working, and more specifically I love teaching. The problem, however, is that the province in which I live is glutted with teachers and there are no jobs for people like me, who are not able to just up and move to the remote communities to 'get my foot in the door'. So, I am here, with a 3 (almost 4) year old and a 2 1/2 year old, trying to figure out what to do with myself.
There are lots of things that I enjoy to do, lots of jobs that I could probably work at and enjoy. The problem, is that there are a number of problems with me doing this. Number one, I don't want to just 'work a job', I want a career. Something I can build and work on, some field in which I can gain experience and expertise that will move me forward and better my abilities. For me, with my training, that would be the education field. I am, however, hoping to do a masters program in counselling psychology. This would give me a leg up in the education system in our province, but would also leave a number of doors outside of the education system wide open for me. It does, however, take time to complete this. Not to mention actually getting into the program.
The second problem is childcare. This is something I often complain about, and I'm sure you'll read about in the future. Childcare for me would cost at least 300-400 dollars A WEEK. That means 600-800 dollars bi-weekly. In order to justify me leaving the house and paying childcare in order to work, I would have to take home (after taxes and whatnot) at least 1500 dollars bi-weekly. I cannot justify putting my children in childcare and going outside of the house to work unless I'm actually making some money after it's all said and done. Finding a job that pays that much is not just improbably, but nearly impossible. That being said, right now I am able to receive employment insurance benefits, because we moved for my husbands job and my contract in my previous position was up. When that is out, I have to figure something out. We just can't survive on one income these days.
So, what are my options? Obviously I can't just stay home and take care of my kids until they hit school-age. Though, it's pointless for me to go out and get a "job" as well, since I won't be making enough money to justify it. I can go back to school, but that's going to take a while to finish and I need to make some money while I'm doing that. We can't really move for a job, because my husband just started this really great job that he loves and that can be really beneficial for us. So what does that leave me with?
I guess I can take kids into my home and provide childcare for other children, as well as my own. Even then, with my two, if I take two more children, I'm still only making about 600 every two weeks, plus having to spend extra on groceries for snacks and lunches. It's not a huge amount of money, but it is a help. It is an option.
I would love to be able to start up my own sort of stay-at-home business, but I really don't have any ideas for one. Cake decorators are a dime a dozen (and I'm not sure I'd be able to do that well), there are photographers everywhere you turn these days (and I'm not sure I'd really enjoy that). I'd love to make things to sell, or to plan things like birthday parties and baby showers, but I'm not sure how much demand there really is for that around here. I just don't know what my options are for this. I guess, as well, I'm not really sure what my abilities and skills are, or if I even have anything to offer anybody.
I tend to think that I'm not alone in these problems. I can't imagine that there are many people that can afford childcare at the prices that are being charged. And I can't imagine that these people find it any easier to live on one income than we do. It's nearly impossible to have children and to financially survive these days, unless you have two solid incomes coming in, and perhaps some family around to fill childcare gaps.
I'm sure we'll figure everything out, and maybe I'll come up with something to do at home. For now, though, I'm at a crossroads.