The Future is Wide Open (and That Scares Me)

I often complain (half jokingly) that there are too many choices out there. There’s an entire aisle at the grocery store devoted to potato chips. As much as I like having 50 options for chips, it can be overwhelming at times. I’ve narrowed it down by trying to be healthy though (that means I skip them altogether). I actually prefer to shop at places like Aldi where I still have some variety, but I’m not completely overwhelmed.

So you can imagine that having to decide what I want to do with my life again is at least as complex as trying to decide on potato chips for me. And deciding on potato chips is overwhelming at times. This is completely overwhelming.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m thankful that I have choices. I’m aware that there are places where choice (especially as a woman) isn’t a factor in life. This is a first-world problem. But it is a problem.

I have several ideas. I could make those ideas work. I’ve crunched numbers and investigated what it would take and it certainly isn’t impossible, but the truth is that I’m scared. I’m not even sure of what. Failure maybe? Looking silly definitely. Wasting my time and resources is real fear. I wanted freedom, but now that I have it I’m a little overwhelmed by it.

I do have some constraints. I have my son with me when my husband is working, which is most days. And due to his schedule I’m never really  sure when he’s going to have a day off. So until my son starts school in August I have to do something where he can go with me. If I’m making something in my home, then I have to wake up before him do it after he goes to sleep or make sure he’s entertained while I do what I do. If I talk to people then he’s going to be right there. Ever try to conduct business with a 5 year old? How did that go?

People say to make a job from your hobby. Well my hobby has been home and work since my son has been born. I work out, but no one is hiring the slightly chubby personal trainer. And I thought about guiding people on hikes, but who wants to go on a hike with a 5 year old?

I really, really looked into my own granola business. I crunched numbers for days. I looked at all the laws. I looked at all the vendors and the cost associated with those vendors. And I decided that the profit margin really didn’t make it worth it. Granola will remain a delicious, delicious hobby for now.

So far nothing feels right for me. My husband suggested that maybe I should just concentrate on being a mom and taking care of the house until school starts in August. Part of me thinks that’s a great idea. But part of me is restless. Other that being pregnant, I’ve always either had a job (or two) or I’ve been looking for one. I’ve been a mom, working and in school. I’ve worked during the day, came home to eat and worked at night. I’m not saying mom and home isn’t enough work (it is!), but I want to contribute financially too.

I’m sure I’m not the first person out there to feel a little lost and I’ll eventually find my way, but it isn’t comfortable. Part of this is becoming comfortable with uncertainty. That isn’t my strong point. I’m type A. I like organization and structure. This change can be described as anything but that.

So I take it one day at a time and do what I can. I cherish these days with my son because he will be in school in August. And I’m thankful that my husband is working hard so that I can have this opportunity to figure it all out.

Have you ever had a career change that wasn’t so smooth? How did it turn out? Any advice for those of us going through it? I’d love to hear from you!







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