It seems to be the week to report major life changes in the blog-sphere! :-)
If you've been following along since the beginning of this project (way back in September), you'll know that I've been really motivated to make substantial life & career changes. These changes are because my work doesn't allow for much/any work life balance, requires a lot of personal sacrifice (weekend/evening work) & international travel, and isn't a good fit for our current lifestyle. At the same time, M's career has grown & is much more demanding than it's ever been.
All of that said, M & I are still very much in process of figuring out our next move (both literally & figuratively). We have about 18 months left on our rent here, and after that, we know that it will be next to impossible to find another house to rent within our school district.
As much as I'd love to stick to my original end date at work of June 8th, it's just not realistic at this point. I really, really need to understand our next step with regard to housing, mortgage payments, budget, etc before I'm comfortable leaving such a high paying job. I am a woman who needs a plan! :-)
The stress of making one decision (my job) without fully understanding our next step with regard to housing has been keeping me up at night. For example, if I worked another 6 months & was able to save $50K towards our down payment, what if that's the difference between buying a house in or near our desired school district? The wrinkle with my job is that I get a substantial yearly bonus that I could apply to a down payment, and monthly stock vests that we'd also apply. If I have a range in mind of how much money we need in a down payment to create a reasonable mortgage payment, I can do the math to back into that & then come up with a realistic end date.
Until we have a pretty firm plan on housing, I don't feel it's in our best interest as a family for me to leave my job. When I make this change, I need to be confident that I'll be able to understand the financial impact on our family, and we're not there yet.
So, what's next? M & I are going to be actively looking at houses & areas near us, as well as spending much more time in conversations about: selling our house in Bellevue, our house at the beach, etc & determining what we can save for a down payment to hopefully create a reasonable mortgage in this area.
Last week, when I had time to myself to sit & think quietly (perhaps originally fueled by some pain management ;-)), I realized that I absolutely have to push back on my job & see if I can make something workable here before I go. Can I reduce my travel? Hours? Work from home every Friday consistently? Until I have those hard conversations with my manager, I don't feel that I've done what I need to do to evaluate my options.
I, surprisingly, feel really, really good about my decision. I don't think I understood how much anxiety I had about leaving my job before the housing decision was settled until I actually took that off the table. Knowing that the decision is mine, and that I'm going to create changes in my role makes me feel much better. I don't feel trapped - I know that this is a decision with a lot of thought and planning, and it's best for the family. Once we have a plan ironed out, I'll again be back with either 1) my job has changed for the better & is manageable or 2) another exit timeline. Either one is in the cards at this point.
It's hard to be moving completely down a path & need to change course along the way, but such is life, I suppose. I'd say the biggest challenge for me since we've moved to California has been my anxiety about our plan with housing. It's a really, really big wild card that influences all of our other decisions. It's helpful to set that as the first problem to solve, with my work being one of the influencers on that decision.
And, that's my update on the 40 week plan! Thoughts or advice?