Sunglasses: Karen Walker ‘Number One’
Today was my last day at my job. After working as a software developer for almost 11 years (6+ years at HBK in Dallas and 4+ years at National Instruments in Austin before that), I’m hanging up my hat for the corporate world. For now, at least. The move was something I’ve been considering for awhile now as I’ve lost some of my passion for software development over the past year or so and the long 10-hour workdays didn’t align with the work/life balance that I wanted to have. Buying a house, gettng married, having a baby — my priorities in life have changed and I’m not the same person as I was back then who actually enjoyed spending night and day hacking away at a computer.
In less than 2 months, Dylan will be turning 2 and looking back I feel like I’ve missed out on being a mommy to this sweet little boy. In the 2-3 hours that I spend with him after work, I know I’m already tired/stressed/hungry and Dylan is only getting the scraps of whatever’s left of me by the end of the day. It just didn’t seem fair. Spending so much time at work was making me resent my job. And when I experimented with cutting back on my hours for awhile, I just couldn’t get enough work done to keep up and it was frustrating to say the least. And so, 2 weeks ago today, I put in my resignation.
I’m not sure what my next move will be. To be honest, I’m not sure if I’m cut out for the stay-at-home mom thing, but I do know that I want to spend more time at home with Dylan. I’m really lucky that our current financial situation is stable enough so that I can have some time to figure it out. The plan is to start by trying out the SAHM / blog on-the-side gig and see how I like it. I’m not quite sure what to expect going into to this full time… Will taking care of him day in / day out be too much for me? Will I be ok without the adult interaction that I get every day at work? Will I still crave something technically challenging to do? I’m toying around with starting my own business and while I have a few ideas, nothing is solidified yet. The idea of working for myself really resonates with me so we’ll see where that goes! I actually have started meeting with a career counselor (first session was last week) and took a couple assessment tests this past weekend to determine where my interests lie and what types of opportunities might suit me best. I’m excited for our follow-up meeting this week and hoping to maybe see what other possibilities are out there that maybe I hadn’t even considered before. Let’s see!
As you can imagine, this is a pretty scary time for me right now. I’ve always been one to have a plan and a sense of direction for where I wanted my life to go. But, I’ve learned that life doesn’t always progress in a straight line and it’s ok to hit some speed bumps and detours along the way. Having so much uncertainty in my life is unsettling for me, but I’m taking advantage of this time as a mental break from the corporate world at the very least and using it to recharge and figure out what’s next. Maybe I’ll love being a SAHM or maybe I’ll go back into the corporate world in a different field or maybe I’ll start my own business. Either way, in the short term I’m really looking forward to spending more time with Dylan and see this little man grow up. My career has always been important to me so I’m also glad that I have some breathing room to try something new. This new chapter of my life is daunting and exhilarating all at once. Thank you so much for reading and I’m so glad you’re here to share the journey with me!
P.S. In case you missed it:
- Hair Tutorial: Twisted Milkmaid Braid – A boho-chic look that’s quick and easy.
- White Plum Giveaway – Enter to win store credit to this cute shop!
Shopping My Closet says
Congratulations on making a brave decision and good luck in whatever it is you pursue!
Liz @ http://www.shoppingmycloset.com
thank you so much!
Merrie K. says
Wow! I'm in the same field as you (literally…I'm a PM) and I curently going through a similar crisis of faith. What do I want the rest of my life to be? what do i want to do with it? I would love to hear how the career coaching sessions go and if you think they were helpful. Keep in touch!
Best of luck Kileen! I'm sure spending more time with your little guy will be a great experience for you both 🙂 You will be successful no matter what you do!
Good luck with your new career direction! 🙂 I'm in IT as well, it can be a very demanding industry. Hope you enjoy spending time with your son while you plan your next move! 🙂
Away From Blue
Daily Express says
Wow, what a big, scary and exciting change Kileen! I'm sure you're in a whirlwind of thoughts and emotions on this. Best of luck to you and I hope you will keep us posted on your life as a SAHM and potential business ventures! I'm excited to see what you have in store. 🙂 -Gina
Wow! You go girl! Congratulations on making a change instead of plugging away being miserable! You should try freelance work and/or web design. I know a lot of programmers and they find they are happier with one project on their time frame (obviously with a deadline – but a reasonable one). Good luck in whatever you find in life!
I've been thinking about freelance work too! Thanks so much for the tip! Will definitely be looking into that. 🙂
Good luck, Kileen! I can say from experience that there are software development jobs out there that have good work/life balance and do not require 10 hour work days. I bet you can even find ones where you can work from home, just depends on the industry.
Take your time and enjoy this new chapter of your life!
Good luck Kileen! Excited to see more casual outfits as you retire your work clothing for a while:)
Thank you Cee! Part of me is also tired of the isolating nature of work that is software development and I don't think I want to just sit and code all day long either. Maybe thing in project management or marketing if I go back to the corporate world? I'm still figuring it out. 🙂
Natalia Restrepo says
Congrats and good luck with whatever you decide to try, at least for now enjoy the time with that little munchkin and his adorable cheeks (hey, this mean more zoo time and cute pics for us)
Lindsay Templeton says
Ahh congratulations how exciting to start a new chapter!! Good luck! Can't wait to see what happens with the blog as I already love it so much and you're working that much (:
I believe in you, momma. No matter which path you take, you're going to be amazing and I'll always have your back.
I'm so excited for you! I recently left my job in audit so I share your feelings of uncertainty. But at the same time it's such a good feeling to be able to start a new chapter in the book we call Life. I'm sure Dylan will LOVE having Momma around more!
witsicle – a life & style blog
Thanks b! Best husband ever. ????
Thanks Jen! it's good to know you've gone through something similar. So far so good and I guess we'll see where this goes!
Congratulations, Kileen! I know you'll do well in whatever you decide to do. It's nice that you're financially stable so you can have the option to explore the world. Good luck in whatever you decide to pursue! ^_^
Debbie Stinedurf says
Wow Kileen! How huge and exciting that is! I have so much respect for you for having the bravery to take that giant step…good for you!
Love the colors in this outfit. The cardigan is beautiful and it pairs perfectly with the skirt.
Congrats Kileen! Whatever it is the future holds, I know it will be amazing for you 🙂
I'm so happy you are following your heart and will get to spend more time with your baby. I also live in Dallas, have a 7 year old boy and recently quit my job! I'm planning to take a few months off before making my next move. Enjoy your time with your son! I know you will find a creative solution where you can be fulfilled as a mother and as a professional! Best wishes!
Kaiyo Aino says
You are so beautiful! This is my favourite post ever! Love it!
Keep in touch!
Kaiyo Aino Blog= Black and Mint
Kaiyo Aino Blog- OOTD: Black
Good luck Kileen~~ I studied Software Development and know the pressures of coding and all that jazz 🙂 Good on you for putting your family first and all the best for the future 🙂
Best of luck to you Kileen! I've been reading your blog for awhile now and have yet to comment. I just wanted to say that I love your fashion and your positive writing style and I'm also so encouraged by women like you who are never afraid to change direction in life no matter when or where or how daunting it may seem – it's very inspiring! As women, the balance of motherhood and our careers is such a delicate balance, but the pursuit of the right balance that makes you happy is ongoing I feel and we should never feel like we have to to be 'stuck'. WIshing you all the best and enjoy this wonderful time you have with Dylan!
Brooke Ober says
Congratulations! I commend you for being a working mother for two years. I tried it for about 5 minutes and knew it wasn't for me. Staying at home with my children has been the best decision I've ever made (definitely not the easiest), but rewarding in and of itself. Good luck in whatever your future holds!
Wishing you the best! I'm sure you'll figure out what works best for you- congrats! 🙂
Miss Hot Couture says
This is so cute!
Miss Hot Couture says
Congratulations Kileen! I am nervous and happy for you at the same time! It is very rewarding to be able to spend time with Dylan before he gets older and becomes a tween and hates you (just teasing)! 🙂 Please keep us posted on how you are doing, about your next meeting with your career counselor! Good luck!
Cheresa @ http://www.misshotcouture.blogspot.com
Kim Yu says
You are so brave to make such decision! I do wish you the best of luck in whichever direction you choose! I wish I can afford to quit my job and spend more time with my kids.
Jane Fitfabfun says
Very brave move, Kileen!! Wish you all the best no matter what you decide to do later. For now, enjoy your best time with your little boy!!
I had to make a similar decision when my son was young and I have never regretted it. Spending time with him during his early years paid off. Now his is 14 and we have a strong relationship built on the trust and security of his knowing that I will be there for him. Congratulations for trusting you heart.
Lady of Style says
I love this colour combination and actually I find myself wearing the exact colours today! Beautiful skirt!
My children are almost 22 and 20 now and according to German law parents have the option to take 3 years parental leave (they can share the time) without giving up the job. Whether you want to do that and whether you can do that financially is of course an individual decision and there is financial support depending on the income.
I stayed at home with my children for a couple of years but soon started working from home before I actually got back into a new job. For me a balanced life is very important and being at work 10hrs a day is not an option – although I spend a huge amount of time on my blog!!
Enjoy the precious time with your son, that is most important!
Annette | Lady of Style
Wow. That's brave. Good luck. I also struggled with that decision. Also in the IT which is sometimes very demanding. My daughter is now 4 and sometimes `I regret not being their for her. Unfortunately financially we are not so lucky so I had to work. Love to hear what your going to be doing next. Greetings from Alkmaar, Holland
Sarah C says
Congrats! What a change, a great one! I'm sort of in the same boat, not sure if I want to stay where I am, but too afraid to do the SAHM thing. Good luck! Looking forward to following your new journey!
mark a. says
pretty lady, you made the best decision a young mother could make! i applaud you for being both brave and courageous to do what you just did! i hope the path you choose will allow you more time with your family and especially your son while he is in those ever precious formative years! you won't regret it!
Rathana @FabFashionaire.com says
That's a big move – wow! I'm very excited for you! Working as a freelancer could be an option for you, which I am thinking of doing this as well. But I'm not sure yet. Wish you all the best and I hope your next career direction will be full of joy, motivation and success! <3
Rathana xo FabFashionaire.com
Inge Yuwono says
Kileen, congrats on the brave decision! I know how hard it is. I am also a fellow petite Asian software engineer. I recently switched job with a different company to work from home. At least I don't have to get ready every morning and drive to work. I know how you feel! *hugs*
thank you so much Beth! that really means a lot to me!
that's so wonderful that you can work from home! i'm really glad to hear you were able to work something out that works best for your family.
LeeAnne, Style N Season says
That's a tough call, Kileen! I've been in the same transition myself for the last one year. Since January, there were two times when I almost submit my resignation, but after praying about it, somehow it's like God said: "Wait, wait, wait!" It's difficult when you've made a very good career and loving it, but yes, I too sometimes feel like not spending enough time with my little boy, who is 1,5 years old now, but there are also times when I know I'm doing the right thing and my career has helped me to be a better mom and wife. So yeah, let's see!
Anyhow, I just want to say that I admire your bravery. And I wish you lucken in all your new endeavors, whatever that would be. I'm sure you will do great in something related with fashion and wardrobe and shopping, you are so good in it! You are my favorite fashion blogger, and I've been getting a lot, a lot, a lot of ideas from you. I hope you don't mind that I plan to post some pictures from your blog to my upcoming post, giving you credit of course, about a look that I got inspired from one of your looks, and your Kate Spade purse that I finally got for my birthday this month. ^__^
Just one thing: please please please keep blogging! The selfish me missed reading your posts a LOT while you were on hiatus during your pregnancy.
Good luck and wish you all the best, Kileen!
LeeAnne, Style N Season
LeeAnne, Style N Season says
By the way, I think my company paid much much more per working hour for freelance consultant than full time software developer. Perhaps it's something you could consider. ^__^
thank you so much for this message LeeAnne! I'm hoping to figure out what my next career step is soon as I want it to be something fulfilling yet still lets me spend time with Dylan.
and happy birthday too!! i love the Kate Spade bag and i'm continuously surprised by how easy a bold red purse is to pair with outfits! and i'm definitely going to keep blogging! if i got anything out of my break it's that I realized that i love blogging and don't want to give it up. worse case is that i'll cut down on how frequently i post. thanks so much for following along all these years!
Tosin AK says
Wow congrats Kileen. I am sure it's such a huge step, but you will do great. So happy and proud of you! And happy almost birthday to Dylan!
Thank you Tosin! I can't believe it's been almost 2 years since I had him. Time certainly does fly! Hope you and your little one are doing well! 🙂