Working Virtually by Kelli

I work from home or “virtually” as I have heard it phrased recently because I don’t want to miss one second of the
joyous, often chaotic world at home with my 2 boys. I never thought I
would say that! As a single working woman living in San Francisco I
never thought I would trade in my exciting career, dining at terrific
restaurants, designer clothing, weekly movies and parties, in exchange
for flip flops, diaper bags, home-cooked meals and Mickey Mouse
Clubhouse. I never thought I’d enjoy being in bed at 10pm, up at 6-
changing diapers, cleaning messes, fixing broken toys, potty training,
rarely a moment alone, with a long shower being my little luxury.

My life as a mother began aboard a cruise ship. When I met my husband,
I left my career and joined him at sea where he worked 8 months of the
year. When we were not at sea, we were visiting family and
vacationing. We had no mortgage, no car payments, no bills, no
cooking, no cleaning. It was a life full of excitement, adventure and
happiness. We returned to California when I was 8 months pregnant and
had our first son. No one can really describe the joy of having a
child, and how it changes your values.

Our return to sea was wonderful. Together my husband and I were able
to spend such quality time with our son. Living in close quarters and
spending every minute together strengthened our bond as a family. Our
son learned to walk and talk aboard the ship. He was exposed to many
languages and cultures, not to mention he saw the world- and we did
this all as a family. After the birth of our second child, we returned
to sea life. This time was just as rewarding as with our first son.
Being together, exploring together, was our life- and I couldn’t image
it any other way. Most of my friends with children worked long hours
and complained how they were missing out on their children’s life, I
knew I was lucky. I was there for every minute and I loved it!

Some months ago, my husband was promoted to a shore-side job. We had
to make a choice- at sea with no expenses we were able to live nicely
on 1 income, but living in California- well that was another story. I
knew there was no way I would put ours sons in an expensive daycare
with strangers and spend hours commuting, only to spend the weekends
together. After all the time we had spent on the ship together, I knew
that it was not an option, I never even considered it. I had to look
for ways to have some income while working from home. I met a mom who
was starting her own company- she had 3 children and like me, she
couldn’t bear to send them to daycare. I began working for her and was
able to stay at home and work my own hours (usually when the boys were
napping.) I became inspired by her ability and drive to build her
company and care for the children. Why don’t I do this, why not take
my skills and determination and put them toward my own business. I had
after-all enjoyed my career, I just didn’t want to leave my children
to do it. I am just starting out on my own and with the help and
support of other mothers like me, I can only succeed. The rewards of
being home with my children and witnessing their creativity, wonder,
and growth can never be measured and no career that takes me away will
ever be worth it.