I’ve been a stay-at-home, work-from-home mom for about 8 years now. When we moved to South Carolina from Arizona for the last 3 years of medical school, I was unable to find a job working in Nuclear Medicine. The town we lived in was small and had only one hospital.
With already having 1 baby, no family around, and a fiancé that worked crazy hours, it wasn’t really possible for me to be commuting close to an hour to a from work. After a few months of not really doing a whole lot but taking care of our daughter, I decided to start blogging and my online business was born.
Over the years, the blog has grown exponentially and beyond anything that I could have imagined and I am forever grateful that this is what I get to do for work. It’s also been amazingly beneficial for each of the subsequent moves that we’ve done and also the three other kids that we’ve had. I can take time off if I need to as well as work from anywhere that has an internet connection.
Of course, my work status is still somewhat of a mystery to others when explained and I get mixed comments from friends, family, and people that I’ve just met. Yet all the comments are geared towards the luxury of wearing pajamas to work and getting to spend more time with the kids.
Yes, I am super lucky to call this my job but it is also a job and hard work. Which becomes even more difficult when kids are running rampant around the house getting into everything, asking you for a third and fourth snack, or spilling all the food all over the floor when I’m trying to shoot.
Yes, being a work-from-home parent is great with great flexibility but it also comes with its disadvantages. Today I’m sharing with you my pros and cons of being a work-from-home mom.
Sure, I can of course work in my pajamas all day but it honestly doesn’t motivate me to do much work. Plus, now I have to walk my kids to school every morning so getting dressed is a must.
However, since I do get to work from home the dress code is leggings and a cute top. I usually just brush my teeth, put on my tinted moisturizer and mascara so I don’t look like death, then put on my leggings.
Morning Appointments and Deliveries
One of the most frustrating things about working out of the home is making appointments for your kids, scheduling repair people, or missing (re: worried someone might steal) a delivery package.
Not anymore now that I’m home. I’m here for all the appointments, deliveries, and anything else that we may need to schedule during regular business hours.
I used to be a traveling tech and would sometimes have to drive and hour or more, depending on the day, to get to work. Then depending on what time I got off, traffic would be horrible.
I am super thankful that now my daily commute is just to the coffee maker to get some coffee and then walking into my office.
During the school year this is radically different than during the summer. When the kiddos are in school “sleeping in” is 6am wake up calls to get the kiddos ready then off to school. However, during the summer I can sleep as late as the kiddos sleep before having to get up and do any work.
Also, if I had to get the kiddos off to school and get myself ready for work I would need to get up at least an hour earlier so yay for the extra hour.
Since I run my own blog and photography business, I am able to make my own hours which is amazing. Since the hubby does shift work and his schedule changes day to day, this is great for our family. I am able to “take off” when he has time off or when the kiddos don’t have school.
Of course, I have a daily schedule that I stick to but it’s nice to have the flexibility to take time off when I need to and not feel super guilty about it. Then I can just make up the work when I have the time.
Turning Work Off
Even though I have great flexibility in my work and can do it anytime, anywhere also means just that. Sick days, vacation days, appointment days all become one big grey area when working from home.
Also, when you aren’t physically leaving work it’s hard to shut down “work mode” especially when I feel like I haven’t accomplished anything at the end of the day. The work that I do not do during the week during “normal business hours” bleeds into nights and weekends also.
Kids and Schedules Are Difficult
As much as I try my best to stick to a schedule, it’s just difficult with kids running around. They don’t care too much that mommy is working and still want to play, read, go to the bathroom, or need food and snacks.
It’s also especially difficult when it’s a beautiful day outside and all they (and you) want to do is play in the backyard or go to the pool. Things like that are hard to say no to and I have to find a good balance of saying yes and no.
Your home is now your work and your work is now your home. You’re constantly faced with dirty laundry staring at you every time you go to the bathroom or dirty dishes in the sink when you’re getting the kiddos their 4th snack of the day. It’s hard to not pull double duty just to make sure things get done.
Plus, since I am home all day the hubby usually expects me to deal with most of it too. Some days I’m just too tired and work or housework doesn’t get done like it’s supposed to.
You Feel Isolated
Working from home means that I interact with either myself or the kiddos all day. I don’t have any co-workers to talk to or make friends with. There’s only so many gossip columns to read and online shopping to do before you’re bored again.
This is the one thing that I desperately miss about working outside the home. Talking to random strangers on the internet doesn’t replace that personal connection you make with someone.
What are some of your best and worst things about working from home?