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Thread: What to do after 20 years of being a homemaker

  1. #1
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    Default What to do after 20 years of being a homemaker

    Have any of you been a stay at home mom for a very long period of time and then gone back to school or work?
    I've been at home for around 20 years and my youngest is going to be a junior in high school next year. He still needs me but not like a little one does. I am at such a cross-roads as to what to do next.
    I'd like a job that has a decent pay without getting a degree. I wouldn't mind going to vocational school or getting certified for something.

    Honestly, after all this time at home and being older now, I am worried that I couldn't keep up at school. All those young whipper-snappers might fly right by me and leave me in the dust.

    I'd love to hear any of your experiences with this kind of situation.

  2. #2
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    Home health aide.

    A lot of them are basically housekeeping and a little companionship. Take Mr Jones shopping, clean up, fix a few meals, clean the bathroom, make the bed.

    You can be clear on what you will and won't do.

    Ideally they have a little course that is about 3 months, home health aide. Just teaches you basics like what to do if they fall, or are bugging you to buy them liquor, stuff like that.

    You are basically being paid to be a "mom".

    " I have had an increasing burden to engage in some down and dirty, street evangelism." March 6, 2010

    Isaiah 6:8 I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “ Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?”

    Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”

    Matthew 22:9 NIV
    'So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’


    I'm praying for you daily!
    I get my Bibles here

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    I always thought it would be fun to cut hair or to make something and sell it or remake things that I find and sell them...I like to create but there must be a market. I have been a stay at home mom for 30 years and can't imagine holding down a job with regular hours.

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    For me, over 21 years of my life have been spent helping "the blind". I can't imagine working with a boss who can see.

    Lucy, take it from a self-employed - it's a lot of work to make it a living, plus you will probably have to pay your own social security, medicare, and sales tax. Keep records, etc.

    Ron and I are a little "geeky" - we don't mind the accounting; but it's there.

    " I have had an increasing burden to engage in some down and dirty, street evangelism." March 6, 2010

    Isaiah 6:8 I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “ Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?”

    Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”

    Matthew 22:9 NIV
    'So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’


    I'm praying for you daily!
    I get my Bibles here

  5. #5
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    I was a stay at home Mom for 13 years before going to work part time in a deli/bakery. It's hard work but I was able to use cake decorating skills I had learned to turn it into the job I have now which is as a cake decorator. I'm blessed that I enjoy what I do and have been able to do it for as long as I have without burning out or developing carpal tunnel. It pays well enough and I just passed my 20th year of employment at the same place...

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    Thanks for the ideas. I had a talk with hubby last night and he tends to feel I should stay home for another year or two until our son is fully independent (driving, working, school). He thought maybe I could volunteer somewhere for a while.
    It's a relief that he's not pushing me out the door but at the same time I feel like I should be training for something so when the time comes I'm ready to work.

    Anyway, looks like I've been given a little reprieve to think about it some more. I really need the Lord to show me what I'd enjoy and be good at. Acts5:41, I don't think I'd be very good at the home health aid position. But wouldn't mind maybe being a medical assistant or maybe drawing blood or doing x-ray. It's just scary to jump into a program after all these years. I feel like my brain cells have shriveled up. lol

  7. #7
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    I'll be praying.

    My Dad had never intended to retire, until he was fired from his last job. He loves being at home with Mom now.

    " I have had an increasing burden to engage in some down and dirty, street evangelism." March 6, 2010

    Isaiah 6:8 I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “ Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?”

    Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”

    Matthew 22:9 NIV
    'So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’


    I'm praying for you daily!
    I get my Bibles here

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    Quote Originally Posted by OnTheHorizon View Post
    Thanks for the ideas. I had a talk with hubby last night and he tends to feel I should stay home for another year or two until our son is fully independent (driving, working, school). He thought maybe I could volunteer somewhere for a while.
    It's a relief that he's not pushing me out the door but at the same time I feel like I should be training for something so when the time comes I'm ready to work.

    Anyway, looks like I've been given a little reprieve to think about it some more. I really need the Lord to show me what I'd enjoy and be good at. Acts5:41, I don't think I'd be very good at the home health aid position. But wouldn't mind maybe being a medical assistant or maybe drawing blood or doing x-ray. It's just scary to jump into a program after all these years. I feel like my brain cells have shriveled up. lol
    sweet hubby! i think volunteering is a good idea for a transition. it gets you back in a sort of outside the home routine. and back under a role where someone else gets to decide when to come in and what tasks are needed for you to do.

    i think that is the route i'd go. i'm hoping i could get back into retail again, it was hard and the pay was almost insulting at times but since i worked at pet stores and craft shops, i found a way to love going in every day.

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    OntheHorizon, I, too, think the volunteer suggestion is a good one. You can learn a lot that way, while still helping. You could volunteer at a hospital, to see if you think you'd enjoy the medical roles you mention in your recent post. If so, some of the health occupations don't take 'forever' to train for, such as Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) or maybe the ones you mentioned such as drawing blood for the lab or doing X-rays. Medical jobs are rewarding, because it offers an opportunity to be an encouragement to other people at a time when they need it.

    -Lynn

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    I think your husband is wise. These are still critical years for your youngest and giving him as much time/attention as possible will be good. You'll have plenty of time to focus on new adventures once he is out of the house.

    Our area has a ministry of feeding the homeless. A meal is prepared at a diff't downtown church each night plus sack lunches need making. They also have almost all volunteers working inside. You may have something like that in your area; try googling "feeding the homeless" or 'ecumenical homeless ministries' and something might come up.

  11. #11
    LilyWhite Guest

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    I couldn't imagine being anything other than a housewife.

    Who says you need to become a career woman because there's no kids at home? You'll have grandchildren soon enough, and you'll want time to spend with them

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    Stick a toe in the water. Look into your local Community College and try one class that is interesting to you. It is not very expensive. You'll get legitimate college credit and find out if you can keep up with those whipper snappers. If you do it while your child is in school, you won't be taking any time away from him...plus you can do homework together! That can be inspiring to your child. My SIL did it, got her BS degree by the time the kids finished high school. Her kids loved that mom had homework too.

    If you don't try it, you may regret it forever. If you do try it and don't like it (doubtful) at least you'll know.

  13. #13
    madeNheaven Guest

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    What to do after 20 years of being a homemaker
    Have any of you been a stay at home mom for a very long period of time and then gone back to school or work?
    I've been at home for around 20 years and my youngest is going to be a junior in high school next year. He still needs me but not like a little one does. I am at such a cross-roads as to what to do next.
    I'd like a job that has a decent pay without getting a degree. I wouldn't mind going to vocational school or getting certified for something.

    Honestly, after all this time at home and being older now, I am worried that I couldn't keep up at school. All those young whipper-snappers might fly right by me and leave me in the dust.

    I'd love to hear any of your experiences with this kind of situation.
    Hi! Well, I was feeling the same way about 2 1/2 yrs ago. I went to a hospital to train as a phlebotomist (person who draws blood) through a short program (3 months). Was $800.00 & the best thing I've ever done! I have been working in an out patient lab for over 2 yrs & really love it! It pays a little over 13.00/per - not a whole lot, but better than I've ever made. Its a really fun job. I only work a couple of days a week now because I am homeschooling my high school daughter for the first time this yr. - thats a little hard, but worth it! btw, I thought needles/blood would not work for me, but turns out I do just fine. Hope you are able to find something also. ysic

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    Quote Originally Posted by LilyWhite View Post
    I couldn't imagine being anything other than a housewife.

    Who says you need to become a career woman because there's no kids at home? You'll have grandchildren soon enough, and you'll want time to spend with them
    I am with you. I really love being a stay at home mom and now that 2 of 3 are grown , I already have grandkids. My dh is self employed and has been for many years so when he says, "Let's go!" I can just go with him. He wants me home and I WANT to be home. Sometimes I think it would be nice to have some earnings that I created myself but our needs are being met and I have plenty to do to keep me active and happy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by madeNheaven View Post
    Hi! Well, I was feeling the same way about 2 1/2 yrs ago. I went to a hospital to train as a phlebotomist (person who draws blood) through a short program (3 months). Was $800.00 & the best thing I've ever done! I have been working in an out patient lab for over 2 yrs & really love it! It pays a little over 13.00/per - not a whole lot, but better than I've ever made. Its a really fun job. I only work a couple of days a week now because I am homeschooling my high school daughter for the first time this yr. - thats a little hard, but worth it! btw, I thought needles/blood would not work for me, but turns out I do just fine. Hope you are able to find something also. ysic
    Really? That sounds like me. My son is homeschooled. He will either do independent study or take classes with our charter school.
    I am not sure how I'd be with the blood and poking people. What made you decide to give this a shot? (Pun!)
    Can I ask what kind of school you went to to train for this? Was it very challenging? Was it full time to go to classes and do homework? So many questions!

    I can totally relate to LiliWhite and Lucy about just staying home and it's nice to know there's support for that also. My husband may also be ok with that.

    I may worry too much about what others think. I get the feeling some of my family may feel like I'm letting my husband work himself to death while I stay home. I also worry about having a way to help out in the future if my husband can't work in the future.


    Thank you all for your thoughts and suggestions. I don't have a lot of people to bounce these thoughts off of so I am thankful for your thoughts.

  16. #16
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    I have been a stay at home for almost 22 years. My youngest is going into high school this fall. I was thinking I needed to go back to work too, but my husband wants me home. He likes the idea of me being here for our youngest son and for him. He has grown accustomed to me being home and loves it. So, I will stay as long as we can afford it. I have learned to quilt, I have volunteered and done so many things I would never get to do if I worked outside the home. So thankful. Now I have 2 grandsons too and I help with them while my oldest is completing nursing school. So I may be helping rear this next generation too. Sounds good to me!!!

  17. #17
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    i remember in college, the nursing students... sticking oranges as practice

    i have blood tests often and i really appreciate a pleasant "vampire", i get really nervous and slaphappy when i'm getting poked so a cheerful person who is willing to at least humor me is a blessing!

  18. #18
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    I am a mother of 3...18,14, and 3 are their ages. I stayed at home for most of my older kids childhood.

    I decided last year to go back to school so I could make a living for us. Im a single mom now and need to be able to support us. Im currently living with my mom, which is nice because Gramma is around.

    Im 38, and Im close to receiving my two year degree in paralegal studies. I will be done in early springtime. I have to say that I am so glad to be doing this. I was nervous about going back too, but it has worked out really great and found that it wasnt as bad as I thought it would be.

    It nice, because I appreciate what I am learning so its exciting, ya know. So it can be done. There are options now where you can take courses on line through the colleges that are fully credited college classes.

    I hope this helps and now maybe its time for you to do something that you really want to do. Once the kids grow up a bit, we have more time to focus on doing other things.

  19. #19
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    I've been a stay-at-home mom for 20 years now. Although my situation is different because our child is disabled, I don't think I could go back to work now. I'm too used to doing things my own way in my own time and not having a boss. If I'm not feeling up to par I can't take the whole day off because my child has to be cared for, but I can take it easy and let other things go for a few days. I'm also used to things being relatively calm and less stressful because no one is breathing down my neck waiting for things to get done. Frankly, I love being a stay-at-home mom.

  20. #20
    madeNheaven Guest

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    Really? That sounds like me. My son is homeschooled. He will either do independent study or take classes with our charter school.
    I am not sure how I'd be with the blood and poking people. What made you decide to give this a shot? (Pun!)
    Can I ask what kind of school you went to to train for this? Was it very challenging? Was it full time to go to classes and do homework? So many questions!

    - sorry I didn't get back to you sooner. What made me decide? Well, some of it was from a need to be able to support myself if needed. (home issues) I looked up medical tech. type careers online & phlebotomy popped up. For some strange reason, it really interested me & I just couldn't read enough about it! weird. I bought used books online & started studying about it and learning all I could....I called around everywhere to find a training program.....finally found a hospital fairly close by that offered a training course. I was put on a waiting list for 6 mos. because only 6 people were allowed in a class & the class was only offered 2 times a yr.

    For me the challenging part was getting myself out there I'm quite the homebody! I was 44 at the time and had not been working outside of the home for many yrs.....so, I was a bit nervous! Not much homework. We were told which textbook to buy & it just happend to be one that I had already bought used & had read. We listened to about 1 hr of lecture each day, then each of us were sent to various local labs associated with the hospital as student trainees to practice on real patients This particular St. Lukes Hospital in downtown K.C. is known as a training hospital - the patients are aware of this also, so it makes it a little easier for people that are new to the medical field to get experience.

    If I remember right, the classes met each day for about an hour, and then we each had different schedules to get our 200 sticks in. Not every day was 8 hrs...& I was lucky to go to the summer class. Lots of days my dd, who was 12 at the time, stayed at my mom's house while I was at school. I really hate leaving kids alone.

    An older lady I was in class with got a job with a lab right out of school.. I really didn't start looking for one until she called me several mos. later. She put in a good word for me and I was hired where she worked! At the time, dd was still in public school, so I worked PRN 2 yrs. for this very busy out patient lab during school hrs. & got lots of experience! I put in my 2 weeks notice when we decided to homeschool, but my supervisor gave me a position for just Thursdays & every other Sat.! perfect!

    Anyway, thats my story......its terrible to get me started talking about phlebotomy, because I still love it so much I get a little carried away! hope this helps, ysic

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