Daily Two Cents Challenge: What Challenges Me

what's your story

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I’ve been a writer my entire life, but never really even considered doing it for a living until I had my youngest daughter in 2011. I had to stay home with her because I couldn’t afford to pay for daycare for an infant and an elementary school child, and I wasn’t too keen on letting my teenager stay home alone after school.

I started writing as a way to earn a few extra dollars, then realized that A) I needed to earn more than that in order to pay the bills, and B) I loved doing it, and could envision myself building a real career from my writing skills.

Unfortunately, working from home as a writer has proved to be a little more challenging than I thought it would be, for several reasons. First, that cute little baby that used to sleep most of the day has now metamorphosed into a wild, wily toddler who won’t sit still for two minutes, let alone long enough for me to get large chunks of work done.

Second, my family life is pretty chaotic. Last year I broke down and finally took my oldest daughter to a psychiatrist because her behavior was just beyond that of a typical elementary school kid. She had terrible mood swings and anxiety attacks, and I could barely cope. It actually took us a couple of years to get a diagnosis for her, because the first doctors we saw claimed it was simply ADHD.

Eventually, we found a doctor who tested her for Autism, and she was found to be on the spectrum, highly functioning. Getting a diagnosis has been a blessing and a curse, because at least now we know that our suspicions were correct, and we can find the best way to help my daughter, but I worry that she’ll always have a “label” attached to her. She’s so much more than just a label, and it’s my responsibility to make sure she realizes it, too.

So, my family life is my biggest challenge, because I’m the one who has to organize everyone, make sure my husband is clued in on all the doctor’s appointments and therapy sessions, and balance my time and energy so that all three of my kids get the time and attention they need from me. It makes earning a full-time income difficult, but I’m getting there. What’s your story?

What challenges you in your life?

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