Category Archives: Making Ends Meet: Finance, Failure, and Freaking Out
I’m putting this category out there because there is sure to be much talk about how to financially make the situation of a work at home dad… well, work. I’ll be straight up honest right now, it is not easy — but, it is doable!
Home got flooded. Found some awesome eats: Fig Tree, Green Acre, Harbor House (more on that in another post). Nate hurt his knee… still don’t get how (yet, another post). Business is REALLY picking up. We lived in hotels for a month. I gained a bunch of weight. Didn’t get to train as much… surfed for the 1st time in forever. AND, realized how much I actually work.
It’s a perfect post for a video entry!
So… here it is.
And, here’s the epic snapchat story on Nate’s birthday 🙂
So, last week, I flew out for my 1st business trip in… forever.
Due to the struggles of Pacific Standard Time (West Coast issues)… I had to fly out on a red eye. Got in a 1am local time. Then, couldn’t sleep until 4am local time. Woke up at 6am EST to grab some continental breakfast which… essentially destroyed me the next day (LOL!).
Housekeeping staff came in at 10-1030am. I jumped out of bed and enthusiastically greeted them, thinking it was my business partner.
Made them jump. Heh. OH Well…
Finally around 1030-11am, he shows up, we get some work done… and, head out for an afternoon long business meeting.
The meeting went smoothly, and, we went back to the hotel to drop off our stuff, check out the Kentucky Derby, and finally, head out for some grub. Not knowing how close Louisville is to the Ohio River, we crossed over the bridge into Indiana! At least in Southern California, crossing borders of any type doesn’t come as easy as such.
Finally having had a night out on the town, I stumbled back into the hotel with barely any sleep under my belt. Thanks a lot, jet lag. Well… the 2nd night was no different. I fell asleep from 1030pm-11pm… because, that felt like a nap in Pacific time. Then, from 11pm til 3 or 4am, I watched bits of HBO, spent some time chatting with my wife via Snapchat, surveyed social media… and, waited for the sandman to arrive.
Up early the next day for the flight home, I probably only for another 3 or so hours of sleep.
By the time I was on the 1st plane home, I was so zonked the flight attendant asked if I was okay. 🙁
AND, the 1st flight started in awful condition as the plane had yet to disembark the passengers before lining us up for boarding. Boarding took soooooo long that it delayed the flight to the point where I had only 5 minutes to hoof it over to my connecting flight from Denver back to San Diego.
Seriously… I was worried I was going to miss that flight.
All in all, 3 days for an afternoon meeting. HAHA. Such is life!
I missed my family with immensity. For two years straight, we’ve been around each other every calendar day. In fact, I believe my wife and I, until this point, only spent two calendar days away from each other since we got married.
So yeah… the missing was bad. Real bad.
Well… it won’t be the end. I have a business trip next week, and, more to come throughout this year. Both good & bad, such is the price in working at home. Personally, it’s worth it. Instead of spending 40+ hours a week away from my family, I spend less than that away every couple of months. It’s not a bad deal 😉
Yes… I work from home! And, I’m kind of ruined for the usual corporate lifestyle… “going in” to work. My office is this packed storage’ish place where a lot of toddler, media, workout, jiu jitsu, and miscellaneous overflow exists in the house. It’s a place I establish some time to every once in a while, do some video blogging or broadcasting via #Periscope or Snapchat… I’ve actually taken a liking to Snapchat.
A photo posted by Ben Fung (aka @DrBenFung) (@daddyintheraw) on
And, then… I’ve been looking back at the big picture. It’s MAY. That means, I’ve been “work at home” for TWO YEARS now. It’s really crazy to think that. Yes… I’ve taken some per diem gigs and some private clients over these past 24 months. However, the bulk of how we’ve been surviving financially has been from me working in this tiny little office, running around after my kid, cooking when I can, or jamming on this laptop at the bar of our kitchen.
It’s really quite crazy, when you stop and think about it. And, it’s awesome, amazing, and a gift of an experience.
What’s really crazy to think about is that… things are actually working out! Yes, it’s still financially a nightmare of sorts. However, it’s the LIFESTYLE I’m after. Of course, should the opportunity come and I get to realize some of my exit strategies that I end up with a big financial bump… yes, that would definitely be appreciated.
Still, I look back and mentally call upon the lovely experiences we’ve had as a family, the closeness I have with my wife, the love, fun, & adoration I have with my boy… how could I give this up?
My hopes and prayers, now, are that this next stage (as it develops) continues to grow this lifestyle along with the finances… that things finally balance out in a direction of growth.
So, it’s been a year… nearly to the day, that I graduated. Again. LOL!
What has happened? Well… EVERYTHING.
Graduating with my MBA to tag onto my other graduate degree, the Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree… I sought to re-enter the world of healthcare at the business/operations beat of the realm. I was only to find that everyone and their neighbor’s uncle’s friend’s cousin’s roommate’s bartender wanted me to do what???
Return as a Director of Rehab.
I mean, if I wanted to be that, I would stayed that. I wanted to DO SO MUCH MORE. I wanted to be around my family more. I wanted to effect change at greater scales. I didn’t want to go back to where I started… it was ridiculous.
Well… as things turned out, I joined a startup company (as you know)… UpDoc Media!
Things are going well. We’ve been growing steadily, quickly, and things are getting very exciting. I’m hoping to be able to share things later on as the dust settles.
Before things got good… well, I basically applied to every corporate job imaginable, in the scope of non-clinical management. Annnnnnnnnd…. #Bust. Yup. No one wanted me. They wanted me to do my old job. #Irony
I also continued my work to be a big advocate for students and developing professionals. Personally, this is a huge driving factor — setting up the future generations for success. I just love it.
All to say, looking back at how I got here, I wouldn’t change a thing. It’s been nearly 2 years since I’ve been a work at home dad, full time. A year since I’ve graduated with the MBA. And, 6 months since my company launched. Things are happening!