Monday, July 14, 2008

Should I get a paying job or not?

We've been living here for about two months now, and I've had a couple of job interviews but haven't heard back from them, and at this point I am wondering if I should even bother with trying to get paid employment. It may not be worth the hassle. It might. If I get hired with either the company I interviewed with two weeks ago or the tax preparation firm I worked with in Virginia (surprisingly, employment is NOT as portable as they'd have you believe), I'll take the position, but I'm trying to decide if I should even try for more.

Reasons I should get a job:
  • Boredom! I have quite a bit of free time on my hands, and while I am engaged in volunteer activities, I could easily handle a part-time job and not sacrifice any family time or fail to accomplish any of my regular errands.
  • The gap in my working resume is only getting longer with every day I fail to work. Same thing with my salary history.
  • A supplemental source of income would provide Mr. Dimes and me with greater ability to fatten up our short-term and long-term savings (and a matched 401k would be totally awesome if I could get it). We've got the three-month emergency fund taken care of, but a car-replacement fund or home down-payment fund would be great to get started on.
  • My student loans, which I have earnestly been paying off with my income, are now starting to become my husband's responsibility with no earnings coming into the household from my efforts. Even earning $200/month would enable me to fully cover the loan payments.
Reasons not to get a job:
  • Potential lack of flexibility. I am doing hundreds of practicum hours for my AFC certification, and a full-time job would cut off my ability to do those at the pace needed to complete them on time. A part-time job is ideal, and what I'm looking for, but even some part-time schedules are unworkable with my volunteer commitment.
  • Interference with family planning: Mr. Dimes and I are thinking about starting a family within the next year or two. It would be difficult if I were to start a job and then immediately get pregnant, as I have no plans to work after giving birth.
  • Possible relocation. As I mentioned a few posts ago, we might be relocating onto base housing. Currently we live about 20 miles away from the base. If I had a job close to where we currently live, it would be just as far from our new residence as his workplace is from our current one. In that case, we'd just be trading commutes. My car gets better gas mileage than his does, but do I want to drive so far every day for supplemental income?
  • Allegedly, there is a lot of nepotism in this area for jobs. I've heard that a lot of people get passed over due to internal hiring decisions or choosing friends or acquaintances instead of the most qualified applicants. While this wouldn't keep me from applying for jobs in general, it would probably cause me to throw in the towel sooner than if I weren't thinking the process was rigged.
So I'm not sure. I guess another thing to keep in mind is that Christmas is coming, and a new job might keep me from being able to go and visit family in December, though I'm not sure that's necessarily a bad thing. ;-) We'll see what happens.

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