I was late for work. Really late. I couldn’t afford another late.
I had my infant in my arms and my toddler at my hand when I opened my door and came face to face with a 4 foot rattlesnake sunning itself on the mat. I stashed my baby in the playpen, put my toddler on the couch and took my husband’s hockey stick from the garage and slapped the snake away. The snake slithered over my sidewalk, but did not leave.
By this time, my baby was howling and my toddler was somewhere in my kitchen making ominous clattering noises. I grabbed my keys, kicked off my heels and darted to my giant SUV climbing in the passenger door to avoid getting bit. I gunned the V-8 engine which fueled my irrational and insane fear of snakes, and steered toward the snake. I must not have closed the house door properly because my toddler wandered out at the same time. I panicked, jumped out, grabbed my son and together we ran the snake down with my truck.
I still had to get both kids in their car seats with bottles and sippy cups, and toys, and their in-flight movie. In gold medal time, I got it all done and backed out my truck. Crunch! Right into my husband’s car.
I got to work that day with holes in my panty hose, gunk on my suit, no diaper bag for the first stop and no day-care bag with lunch for the second stop. I also forgot my cell phone so I could not alert my office of my tardiness or call my husband out of town on business to tell him I had an accident with BOTH our cars.
Driving home that night, my toddler had a massive nosebleed when we were bumper-to-bumper – 4 lanes deep during the Los Angeles rush hour. As I sat in the heat and exhaust mopping up blood and tears, I started to cry myself. I couldn’t do this anymore. I needed a way out.
I will always remember that day; because it was the day I left Corporate America.
The decision to stay at home with my children was not an easy one after a successful business career and achieving (and paying for) both my undergraduate journalism degree and graduate business degree from Northwestern University.
Being able to see my kids anytime she wanted was priceless. Not having the money, financial freedom and stimulation of other working people was not. I started freelancing and before long I had a small but steady stream of clients.