Both my husband and I agree that we ought to have kick ass careers to fill the void left by not parenting. But we have no idea how to arrive at that point. The problem is neither of us particularly like our current careers. My husband just fell into his (commercial audio visual and building integration) and spent his youth as a work-aholic. As a result he got many promotions and progressed to mid level in his career. Then he met me and his career progress stalled. Making it any further would require him traveling all the time and he isn’t willing to do that anymore because he wants to see me sometimes. Also the upper management at his current employer can’t make up their minds about what they want from his department-to grow or not to grow.
I sort of fell into my career too, I wasn’t my first choice career but I chose it for purely pragmatic reasons. It paid decent money, jobs were readily available and stable, and I liked working with people. I went in to the job with the work to live mentality not that nursing would be my life. The problem is that nursing takes over your life and its almost impossible to not take your work home with you. Its a really demanding field and it is plagued by the motto of of all jobs in the 21st century “Do more with less”. All jobs say that I know, but in my job the stakes are higher (human life) and its really stressful to not be given the resources you need to do your job.
Needless to say neither of our current employment situations are long term career options. I am currently exploring the Nurse Educator option by getting my masters degree but I am not sure this is really the answer for me. Its kind of my last ditch effort to stay in the nursing profession. Jack has ideas of careers he’d like to get into but they all involve starting at the bottom again and taking huge pay cuts. We can’t really afford this right now since we have his student loan to pay off (its a big one too) and our IVF 401 K loan to pay back (or face the wrath of the IRS). Not to mention the complete draining of our savings thanks to IVF and all the money we dumped into our second house just to sell it.
It seems like our only options right now are to just suck it up and keep going in our lackluster jobs for the next few years until we can financially recover but I don’t want to. Life is short people! I don’t want to start a new awesome career too late and I honestly feel like if I can’t have kids I ought to have some kind of fulfillment in life. I know there are no guarantees or entitlements in life but I really don’t think it too much to ask from the universe.