How I Got Here: The Trials and Tribulations of a Work At Home Mom

It’s two o’clock in the afternoon on a Thursday. I’m watching my 13 month-old as he concentrates really hard to get the lid back on a container of snacks. He figures it out. His eyes light up. He smiles and looks at me to see if I was paying attention. Yup, I was watching. Mommy sees it all. Do you want to know why? Because I can! The fact that I work from home as a transcriptionist and virtual assistant makes afternoons like this possible.


transcriptionist works at home
The man who makes it all worth it.

This wasn’t always my life. I’ve left comments on other blogs and written some posts here on my own site that alluded to my story. I’ve never explained the whole thing. Some of you wanted more details. Well, here goes.

The transition period into this new lifestyle started with a comment that went something like this: “What the he@# am I supposed to do now?” That was my reaction when I found out the company where I worked for the last almost nine years was laying off all employees and closing their doors due to the economy. I was seven months pregnant and visions of booties and burp cloths danced in my head. I wasn’t even thinking about finding a new job or career. Now it seemed that I didn’t have a choice.

There were several stressful weeks as my husband and I developed a new game plan. We decided to save on expenses in any way we could while I searched for a new job. However, my big pregnant belly greeted each interviewer before I did. Let’s face it. People were not looking to hire someone who would be going on maternity leave very shortly.

There were a lot of sleepless nights, praying and plenty of crying. No, this wasn’t after the baby was born. This was me pregnant, emotional and trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life! I spent countless hours researching online careers. I decided that, ideally, I would like to stay home and raise my baby while making a full-time living.

This was no easy task. There were plenty of get-rich-quick schemes to be found. I did come across some viable options but I didn’t have the start-up costs needed. Then I found my beacon in the dark. I found Loretta Oliver’s Transcription Crash Course (Click here to see the post I wrote about that for more details). I thought, Hey, I could do that! I could be a transcriptionist and I have tons of other skills to offer as a virtual assistant.

In my previous job, I was pretty much the go-to person. I managed the staff. I created the schedules. I kept track of production. I developed systems to make record keeping and production run more efficiently. I was at the top of my game when it came to customer service. The clients loved working with me—and I knew them all by name. I also ran the business when the owners were away.

So, why couldn’t I do all of this for my OWN business? I decided that I could! Did it all just fall into place effortlessly? Absolutely not. Did it take my very own blood, sweat and tears? Yes it did. Have I had to figure some things out as I go? Of course! Did I sometimes work with a child strapped to me or in between 2 AM feedings? Yup.

Every last minute of this has been worth it. I create my own schedule so I don’t miss out on time with my family. I make my own rates. I choose the clients I work with (and I love them all!). Sometimes I wear sweats and a t-shirt. Sometimes I take a work break in the middle of the day and go outside with my son. This is what having my own online business has afforded me.

This was my story for anyone who says they don’t have the time, there’s not enough money or they’re just plain scared. Here I am—living proof.

So, what’s your story? How did you get where you are today? Are you not quite where you want to be yet? What’s stopping you? I’d love for you to share your thoughts with me!

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19 thoughts on “How I Got Here: The Trials and Tribulations of a Work At Home Mom”

  1. I love your starting story – it’s quite a lot like my own. I know that “What the he@# am I supposed to do now?” moment very well. I’m glad I was able to help you find this path and get started, and I hope I can help you make it grow even more!

    1. Thanks so much, Loretta! Yes, that’s definitely a scary feeling. Sometimes we can use that fear as a motivator. You definitely had a hand in helping me and I’m not ready to stop yet:)

  2. That is so totally awesome reading your story and hearing about your awesome progress! And it so cool that Loretta was your beacon like that. I tell you what, she has sure been a giant help to me! Thanks for sharing your story!

    1. Thanks Lisa!

      Many of us have had that moment in the dark where a light shined and we knew exactly what we had to do.
      That doesn’t mean it’s always easy to get there.
      I’m so glad you visited:)

  3. Hi Alicia,

    Even though I was one who watched you go all this process in order to stay home with Danny, I must tell you, I love the way you told the story! If I didn’t already know it, I would have been glued to the post to find out what happened next.

    You are a great VA and transcriptionist and I hope the work keeps pouring in for you! Great job!


  4. Hi Alicia! So glad you were able to find a way to work from home. I’m a VA as well and it makes all the difference in the world to know I’ll be home when my kids get off the bus everyday.

    Much success!

    1. Hi Christina!

      It sounds like you can really relate to my story.
      I consider us very lucky–but it’s not luck, is it?
      We worked hard for this and we deserve it!
      I’m going to hop on over and check out your site.
      Thanks for the visit!

  5. Wow, what a great story. The beauty of it was you were able to make it work and stay at home w/ your son.

    Yes, the economy changes a lot of people’s plans but it’s great you figured it out and what works for you.

    Yes, you have to make a living but the time you are able to spend with your son is priceless. It’s something he will treasure when he get’s older and so will you.

    Great to see you; I was getting ready to give you a shout out because I hadn’t heard from you but it’s great to see you come out w/ a human interest/solopreneur post.

    Hope your weekend has gone well.

    1. Hey Bill!

      Great to see you again.
      I have to say, I was a little nervous putting it all out there but the response has been great.
      I just want people to know what’s possible and I love hearing other people’s stories.
      Thanks as always for the visit!

  6. Alicia what a great story. I am sure it will be a great inspiration to those that find themselves in the same shoes that you were in. You are an awesome mom and businesswoman. Thanks for sharing

  7. Alicia, this post is amazing and so are you. I am sure you are going to be a huge inspiration to anyone out there who is being forced to make life changing choices, and especially mums who would rather stay at home full time with their kids instead of taking the oh so short maternity leave… There are a lot of things I relate to, and all I can say is, you should be really proud of yourself 🙂

    1. Hi Michelle!

      Thank your for those wonderful words!
      I’ve worked hard to get here and I want other entrepreneurs to know that they have what it takes:)
      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  8. That is a great story, more power to you!
    Good luck with all your future assignments and get success in it!

    PS: If you tweak your WP settings then you will be able to reply to each comment below them instead of replying to all of them in a straight line with a mention..

    1. Hi Rohan,

      Thank you for the good wishes!
      Yes, I will have to look into how to adjust the comments.
      You always have some tidbit of information for me.
      Thanks for visiting!

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