Re-Entering the Job Market

GeekMom
Kai-Lan and a Resume (Image: Mandy Horetski)

I talked about being a stay at home mom in my last post, but I’m preparing to re-enter the job market. The thought of working outside the home is a rather terrifying thought to me.

I’ve been in school for the last two years and I’m due to graduate with a degree in Medical Office Administration in December. Even though I still have another semester to get through, I’ve been starting to apply to at home medical transcription jobs.

I picked the program because my husband and I figured that I could get a job more easily in the medical field than in other fields. I didn’t pick it because it’s something I really enjoy. In fact, one of my fears is that the job I do get will be one that I hate.

While my degree will be in medical office, I’m really hoping to be able to get a medical transcription job. I took a class in transcription last semester and I loved it. It was fairly easy for me to do because I can type very fast.

The majority of these transcription jobs are at home jobs, which is what I would prefer. Because of the internet, the dictation files can be uploaded to your home computer. As long as you have the right software and equipment, you can work from anywhere.

This type of job is ideal for me for a variety of reasons. For one, we wouldn’t have to pay for daycare. My husband works 2nd shift, so I can work in the morning until he has to go to his job. Also, I like working by myself, even in an office setting. Plus we are planning on moving to Charlotte in a few years, and it would be nice to work a job that I could keep after I move. Things are so different now since I had my daughter, that I can’t really picture myself in a traditional office anymore.

But I will suck it up, even if I do have to get a job outside of home. My husband has been working in a job he dislikes for years (though it’s not really the job, but the company he works for), so it’s my turn to bear the load some.

It is hard to apply for jobs when your toddler is crawling all over you. That’s what happened when I first started to send applications out. I was trying to get my resume set and apply for jobs online, when all my daughter wanted to do was sit next to me. We managed to get in a position where she was sitting with me, but I could still type.

I haven’t had a ‘real’ job since before my daughter was born, so I’m more than a little nervous about entering the job market. Do any of you have any stories (good or bad) about re-entering the job market after an extended leave?

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12 thoughts on “Re-Entering the Job Market

  1. I’m going through the same thing right now. My husband is getting out of the military and going back to school, and I’m trying to fill out job applications, update my resume, and fix up our house to sell while meeting the needs of the kiddos…not easy! My degree is in education, but with the budget cuts this year, I’m probably not going to be able to find a job teaching, so I’m having to look in other fields. I’m really afraid I’m either not going to find a job, going to find a job I hate, or going to find a job I have no idea how to do! Best of luck to you.

  2. I am nervous to be away from my kids, my last work day was almost 3 years ago before my daughter was born. I have an almost 3 and almost 1 year old now so with school looming it is time to rejoin the workforce next year. I think if my applications don’t pan out I will just open my own (law) practice. It is daunting but remember you have survived a newborn and then a toddler so this work thing should pale in comparison. That is what I keep telling myself! As a mom I have learned to switch gears faster and juggle more responsibility so I am optimistic when I am not worrying. Good luck!

  3. Last year I rejoined the workforce after staying home with my daughter for 2 years. I started working through a temp agency and was recently hired on permanently by the company I was placed at. I’m a graphic artist.

    There are definite pluses and minuses to working outside the home. It’s hard not to be able to see my little girl all day, and to leave a lot of her care and education in the hands of the teachers in her day care. And there is the added expense of the day care. And getting both of us ready in the morning and out of the house so I’m not late for work can be a little frustrating at times.

    On the other hand, she’s made several new little friends – we’re even going to a birthday party this weekend for one of them, and she does dance class through her day care now (meaning I don’t have to sign her up for separate classes somewhere). And it can be fun to see what she comes up with that she learns from the other kids. She is currently on a “wow” kick. It’s also nice for myself to have time away from her, where I am my own person again, not her mommy or my hubby’s wife. I am able to feel pride in accomplishments other than things that have to do with my house or family, and I am able to meet new people.

    The hardest thing is just getting out there and doing it. I do suggest that you start your child in day care gradually, either a week or two before you start working, or (in my case both my husband and I were hired for new positions in the same week without a lot of warning), getting a family member to come up and help take care of her and introduce her to day care over a week of increased time spent there. And start looking around for child care now, if you haven’t yet. It can be very hard to find a place at the last minute.

  4. Hi, I left my work after my maternity leave and stayed at home with my daughter for a year. After that it was fairly easy to get a job, it wasn’t very well paid tough but it led me to another and from full-time jobs, independent jobs, now i h ave a part time translating job, independent sales one among other things, I’m a single mom so I have to find ways to keep enough time for my daughter while making enough $

  5. I, too, am a stay-at-home mom, though I prefer to call it being a “domestic engineer.” Anyhow, when my children were small, I did data-entry from home for my husband’s then-company. It was mostly either entering information from returned mail to a database so no further mails would be sent to that address, or entering survey information for various medical companies. Mind-bogglingly boring work, but it was a paycheck and it allowed me to stay home with my kids. The paychecks were small, but we were able to tuck them into savings or to pay off bills.

    Of course, it was difficult to work, sometimes, when the kids wanted to be up in my lap, but I did eventually get them to realize that climbing in Mama’s lap while she was “at work” was not helping, and soon, they were content to play next to my desk while I worked. That way, they could see me, talk to me, and be happy, and I could work, talk to them, and not feel like I was abandoning them. And I do have to admit, it was a huge lift to my self-esteem!

    I no longer do data-entry, but I have been pondering other jobs that would allow me to “telecommute.” Because I, too, am looking at a return to the job market.

  6. have you tried searching companies in different regions of the country. Many companies silicon valley are using distributed workforce models. Also, I know a lot of people who use Amazon’s Mechanical Turk to earn money in their free time.

    1. Jobs like that just don’t pay enough and have no benefit plan.

      I have two at home jobs right now and have looked into Mechanical Turk, but it’s not enough money to support a family.

  7. I just (as in 2 weeks ago!) started working outside the home after 7+ years as a SAHM. It is a huge and difficult adjustment for the whole family (the kids are 7 and 5), but I think it is going to work out. I also got a certificate in a healthcare field (phlebotomy) thinking it would make it easier to find a job. It did not. After about 7 months of failing to get anywhere with a phlebotomy job, I was offered a completely unrelated job with an amazing company. It was, literally, too good an offer to turn down. Life is suddenly very different here, but I am confident the change is going to be good for all of us.

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