Do I Still Get to be the “Barren Librarian”?

It’s time to address the elephant sitting in the corner, blowing it’s elephant spit at me with it’s trunk.

We need to talk about my moniker. Both parts of it (intrigued yet? Read on).

So, to state the obvious, I’ve got this kid now.

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She’s pretty great. Maybe you’ve met her-her name is Charlie.

So, by the simplest definition of the word, I can no longer be considered “barren”. I have born a child. I grew her and stuff. I pushed her out of my body and she’s here, in my house. Being a baby, being my kid. Basically being my whole world.

Which brings me to my next issue: that tricky librarian part.

“Librarian” isn’t just part of my blog name. It is inherently part of who I am. I’ve been working for libraries since I was 16. I’m now 27. That’s a lot of years for a relatively young life. I have a masters degree in library science. I have quite literally devoted my life to libraries.

But this kid:

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Basically she’s changed everything. My life, my world, my focus, my heart. Everything about me. And I started thinking about my job and how my kid was going to play into that. I saw myself doing story time and playing with babies while my baby was….probably sitting in a swing at daycare. Maybe being comforted by a very nice daycare worker. But let’s be honest, probably not getting a lot of mental stimulation. She’d be taken care of, but with a ratio of 6:1, I doubt she’d get much more than that.

And then I started thinking, do I really have to go back to work? How much can Chief and I get by on? I pay a few very important bills with my salary, and Chief can’t just pick those up. Then we got a few important pieces of information:

  1. We got notice of Chief’s GI Bill and other school benefits through the national guard and they were more generous than usual.
  2. I heard about a few information related jobs I could do from home.

So I applied for two jobs: a search engine evaluator and a social media specialist.

And I got both of them. One is twenty hours a week and the other is basically as many as you want to work. I don’t 100% have them. I have to pass my training on both. I’ve completed the work for the search engine evaluator and will get my results next week, and I’m working on the social media specialist one, but if I do well (and I think I have) I’ll have two jobs. And did I mention that they pay almost what I was making at the library? Without me having to pay $4-500 a month for daycare? And gas to get to and from my workplace?

So that pretty much made up my mind. I chose to not go back to my traditional work in favor of staying at home with Charlie and working these jobs during her naps and when she goes to bed at night. With my freemie system I can even work while pumping.

So on Thursday of this past week I officially resigned. I cried on the drive to what used to be my work. I cried just now typing that sentence. I loved that workplace. I love those folks. But I just love this kid so much more:

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I’m keeping my job at the law firm and my cousin S is going to watch Charlie one day a week for me. That will keep my professional side alive and keep my resume from having a big gap of library related work. So now I’m just a law librarian (and a search engine evaluator and social media specialist).

I am afraid as any sane person would be. I am afraid these jobs won’t work out in the long run. I’m afraid that by giving up this part of myself I’ll eventually make myself unhappy. I’m afraid we’ll run into financial difficulties. But I was so much more afraid that I would regret not taking this chance someday when Charlie is walking away from me, going to college, getting married, having babies of her own.

So I’m really not the Barren Librarian anymore. I’m really the Infertile Law Librarian/Stay at Home Mom Who Finally Got Pregnant, but that just doesn’t roll off the tongue, so I’ve decided to keep my title even if it doesn’t really fit anymore.

Because I think in a way I’ll always be the Barren Librarian.

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29 thoughts on “Do I Still Get to be the “Barren Librarian”?

  1. I think keeping this name is good because it is indicative of your journey to having Charlie 🙂 Huge congratulations on the roles! That is amazing news! I think this will be great for you and how awesome that you can work from home.
    I think there will always be times for anyone where money is tight and one must get creative with ways in which they save on living expenses (trust me I have been there and I am about to be there again!), but the truth is that it could happen no matter what job you have right?
    I think listening to your heart is important and you are giving yourself a great challenge working from home with a bub 🙂

  2. Just because it’s part of your past doesn’t mean it no longer applies to your present! I’m glad you’re keeping it!

    Also, I totally hear you on day care. We visited a day care on Friday and I cried the whole way home. (At least it was a short drive.) Ever since then, we’ve been trying to figure out if one of us can stay home. So far, the answer is no, but I’m going to keep trying to figure it out!

    • One of the ways in which I’m fortunate is that I live in one of the poorest areas of the U.S.-so I didn’t need a job that paid much to give up the one I had. I imagine it would be much harder in California! I feel for you momma. Daycare had me in serious tears. Even leaving her with my cousin makes me sad in a relieved sort of way, you know? I know she’ll be loved and snuggled and smiled at all day, but I’ll miss her. I’m convinced it will be good for both of us though. Hugs to you! I hope you find a solution that works for your family!

  3. So happy you get to stay home with your sweet girl! I have serious anxiety about going back to work because I’ll have to leave him with daycare. Will they love him? Sing him his favorite songs? Be patient with him when he cries? Ugh my heart hurts already! The end of my leave looms over my head.

  4. That sounds like a best case scenario in my books! Win win win win! I love that you’ll be able to do exactly what your heart wants, you’ll make more than enough money in less time AND you’ll be able to avoid that often unavoidable gap in your resume of non-mom activity during your time off from “work”. I’m very envious!

  5. I’m so happy for you! I want to stay home so badly but we just can’t afford it on one income. I’m fortune to only work part time and my family watches him then but I miss him like crazy.

  6. I’m glad you were able to find a way to stay home with Charlie. You will not regret any of the time you spent at home with her. I am happy for her and for you that this worked out!

  7. (And fat fingers on my tiny phone!) What I was about to say before I hit reply… Congrats on finding a way to make staying at home work. It took some creativity, but it’s clearly what you and yours need!

  8. Charlie is lovely. When she is a bit older I suspect you can hire a babysitter to help while you are at home working too, and at a more affordable rate than the daycare you mention. AND, you will know exactly what is on-going with both of them! Glad you are keeping the name and continuing to write to and for us. Thank you.

  9. I’m so happy for you!! You won’t regret your decision! I had my daughter in 2012 and I have been a stay at home mom ever since! My husband and I downsized to a smaller house, we got rid of one car, and my husband was able to get a better job so we could afford for me to stay home. It was the best decision we’ve ever made. Since then we’ve gone on to also have a son and I’m so thankful I get to be with both my kids every day. The years when they are small go by so quickly!

  10. Awesome decision!!!! I am so happy for you. DH and I have been talking about some changes if this pregnancy sticks. I’m the main breadwinner and were in Canada so I’ll get a year of mat leave. I can take the standard govt rate and of 80% of my pay and if I want, I can choose yo get a top up from my employer (but that means a big tax hit). We’re thinking of doing the 1 year leave then taking a 6 month to 1 year unpaid leave for me. It will be very tight, but daycare is 1200 a month – basically I don’t want to be working insane hours to pay for daycare, be too tired to see her and buy some middle class comforts, if I can scrimp and be a mother to Smoochie.

      • People always ask if I’ll move back to the us and yeah, I do miss it. I feel like it’s easier in the U.S. to ‘get ahead’ – if you’re willing to kill yourself in the process… Plus there’s so much choice! You can choose almost anything.

        Whereas here, there’s a glut of highly educated people everywhere around you, because education is affordable, so no one sticks out and we’re all in this ‘pack’ together- competing for the same limited resources. Sometimes it hard to feel like you’re getting ahead and I feel unsettled, wondering if I’m missing out.

        But the middle ground in Canada is also an ok place to be, because there’s more of a safety net and benefits and services. So i always remind myself of that – though if anything I wish we’d push to get back to our progressive roots here and fight for universal daycare. I’d happily pay higher taxes if everyone had access to a good system.

  11. Congratulations on finding a way to stay at home with Charlie. I knkw that was what you really wanted so I am so pleased for you. They are only little for such a short time. Before you know it she will be going to school (I’m almost at that stage – it goes so fast!) and then your time with them is just so reduced. Anyway we all do what is best for our families and I am glad you have what works best for you. X

  12. I’m so excited for you that you’ve found not one, but TWO jobs that you can do from home so that you can stay with your little! I’ve been wracking my brain for months trying to think of a way to not go back to work after having kids, I haven’t come up with anything good yet. I think you should keep your name though…it’s who we all know you as, it would be strange to try to learn you as someone else. I don’t think you’ll regret any of your decisions about work at all. She’s only a baby once, you can’t get any of that back. 🙂

  13. I just want to say THANK YOU for posting because this gave me some desperately-needed hope for the future. I am SO unhappy at work, and I’m in full-on “operation tough-it-out-until-the-baby-is-born” mode right now. I’m terrified that I won’t be able to find anything when I’m on maternity leave, which is my #1 goal. I really needed to hear that this has worked out for other human beings, and especially for other human beings with similar educational backgrounds to my own!

  14. This is amazing!!! Congrats on finding something that works for you with being a new mummy!!

    I also think keeping your blog name is great too 🙂

    I always wonder whether I will get to where you are and do something similar with work, but I don’t think you really know it until you get there. I am excited for your two new jobs AND keeping your third legal job too!! I look forward to hearing about them soon 🙂

  15. It’s hard to come up with a name as catchy as yours…why change it? Andplusalso…there is a very short list of things in life that we will never regret. Time spent with our children is one of the most precious. Kudos on finding options that allow you to do it!

  16. I only just saw this, but congratulations! I can understand it being scary, but those jobs sound like the perfect librarian work-from-home jobs. I vote you get to keep the blog name – once a librarian, always a librarian, and the barren part will always be part of your history, too.

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