Tuesday, August 9, 2011

my not-full-time job

(Lulu at work with me last week)
You all know I work part time as a speech therapist.

I love what I do.

I visit dirty, smelly daycares and my boss told me when he hired me that I needed to remember that in many cases, I would be the most enriching part of that kid's week. But I love it. It has been such an answer to prayer, fitting into the flexibility of my life with toddlers and now a preschooler while still paying the bills, getting me out of the house and stretching my skills.

In June, anticipating Hawaii, I started feeling pretty desperate for a break from work.
I knew I needed a vacation. I needed a break from the reality of miserable house selling, packing and moving apartments to escape hellish neighbors, and general life frustration. I lumped my work into that and ran screaming into the arms of palm trees and really good books.

Two weeks before Hawaii, you see, I found out that my boss was shutting down his practice.

I was essentially laid off.

I wanted to call the bank and say, see? I really DO need that short sale because our situation has become even more desperate than before!

There were immediate rumors that the other PT in the practice was interested in buying it from him, saving all of our jobs and even possibly kicking the clinic up a notch. But it was several stressful weeks before we heard for sure. Laura did indeed buy the practice, I did indeed get to keep my job, and the transition at the clinic has felt nearly seamless. I'm excited for the changes she will make and I'm so honored that I get to stick around. The transition has not been seamless on my schedule though. In the process, we lost one of the daycares where we used to see kids and it was essentially 80% of my caseload.

In one day, I went from making my own schedule, seeing kids on my own time, and being my own boss, to being at the mercy of the clinic and hoping there were extra kids there that I could see! I am working odd hours all over the place trying to get enough hours. Especially after an expensive month like Hawaii June, this blow to my caseload came at an awful time. I am a contract therapist, if I don't see a kid, I don't make money. A week in Hawaii equals 1/2 a paycheck lost. So, July was nerve wracking in yet another way.

Laura has been amazing though. She has worked tirelessly to get me the hours that I need and to build back up my caseload. Hopefully in the next few weeks, I'll have a consistent schedule again. I need it. And Lucy needs her naps back!

I find it interesting and humbling that my cry for a break from work was really only a lesson in how much I need to work, how much my family depends on my work, and how blessed I am to work with these amazing therapists. I've worked in beautiful clinics, amazing hospitals, sparkly clean schools, but I'm most at home right where I am right now.


Grandma Jan said...

Lu is adorable. She is growing up so fast.
I'd love to come visit and spend naptime at home with her. Unfortunately I can't this month. But I would if I could.
Love, Grandma Jan

Barb said...

I love how we can look at our trials and see the benefits! Hang in there!!

Emily said...

You are so smart and eloquent, Liz! I'm glad you have a great work situation right now and an employer who works hard to make it great!