Work-At-Home Mom-me: Part 1 - How It All Started

I realized that I have yet to write about my experiences as a work-at-home mom, so I decided to write a series of posts about my experiences about being a work-from-home mom. This first post shares my back story and how I stumbled into working from home. Upcoming articles will talk about the challenges I faced, a typical day and the benefits of working from home.

Before, moms only had two options: work at the office or stay home, taking care of your family. But now the best of both worlds are at our fingertips, mommies.

A short background. Fresh out of college, I worked as a high school teacher for four years. While teaching is a noble profession, it is not a lucrative one, and I was already supplementing my income by providing tutoring services and writing for online services. When Big C and I decided to get married, we decided that it was best that I stop teaching and instead focus on online writing, since it paid better and was less stressful and tiring for me. I loved teaching, but it took so much out of me, physically and emotionally and I just didn't want to bring that home to my husband every day.

The work eventually dwindled out and as a new homemaker, my energies were focused towards learning the ways of running our little household. We didn't have a maid then; with only two people in the house, Big C and I felt that it was an unnecessary expense. It was all just me. We only hired a maid to help me out when I was 4 months pregnant with G. That left me a lot of free time to do nothing but grow my baby in my tummy.

But after we lost G, I was adrift and looking for something to distract me. My sister, D, at that time, a graduating engineering student, was recruited by a US-based data consulting company. She was doing statistical analysis, helping out foreign MA, MS and PhD students with their theses and dissertations. It paid really well on a per project basis and if you worked hard enough, you could earn more than $1200 a month just writing from home. For a college student, that was a lot of money. For a stay-at-home mom who is looking for supplemental income, especially one who sorely needed to be distracted from wallowing in grief, it was a godsend.

My youngest sister, K, and I decided to apply together, sharing one work account and dividing the projects and income between the two of us. Although I was a bit skeptical at first (Math and statistics are NOT my thing. At all.), my sister was patient enough to coach me through most of my first projects. With time, I got the hang of it and it got easier. Plus, it really was no different from all those papers I had to write as a college student, and writing has always been my forte. Sometimes, our data analysis work included basic editing and revisions of papers already written, or making presentations for defenses. That's the easy part. The data analysis part is something that I had to work on, and I still work on learning more about it up to this day.

I had very little money saved when we got married; like I said, teaching is a noble profession, not a lucrative one. But although I never reached my sister's earnings level (She works really fast since math and statistics are right up her alley. It takes me a lot more time since I still have to do research.), the money I made was more than enough for me, and I soon built up a little nest egg of my own, even while sharing the work account with K. Since Big C takes his responsibility as the provider very seriously, I never had to touch the money I made and it was tucked into an account for a rainy day.

I kept working while pregnant with J. (I think that's why I gained a lot of weight during that pregnancy. I got no exercise since I was in front of the computer for almost 8 hours a day.) I stopped working a month before I gave birth to give myself some much needed rest time and to prepare the things J needed. By stopping, I meant not taking on any new projects, but still working on revisions from my old ones. K was taking over most of the work, and keeping the account alive until I could come back in a few months.

After J's birth, I didn't go back to work until about 3 months after, when our household had finally settled into a routine and I managed to work out a schedule between nursing my son, spending time with him, managing the house and pumping what I could of my breastmilk. Work production, needless to say, was at an all-time low, but it didn't matter to me. Important thing was, I was earning again.

Now, at almost 32 weeks pregnant with Little C, I am still working. Things are a little bit more complicated now that J is an active toddler who demands more time and attention, but luckily, we've been managing. I'm still pulling in a decent salary, not much, but enough to set aside in our rainy day account or for surprises for Big C and J. I plan to stop taking on new projects after April and just work on revisions in May, while I rest in preparation for Little C. Hopefully, as I did with J, I'll be able to come back to work in a few months. Based on previous experience, it won't be easy, and it will take time, but that's another post for another day.

Have a great day, all!


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