Chuck is currently working on obtaining his administrator's certificate. When he finishes at the end of this school year, he'll be certified to be a vice-principal. In addition to the course work he's taking through the university, he has to take some classes through his school district. At the end of the first of these school district classes, there was a panel of recently-hired administrators, and a Q & A session was held. The thing that Chuck took away from this was that he (and I) should expect him to work 12-hour days, 12 months a year if/when he is an administrator.
Right now, Chuck leaves the house around 6:30 a.m. and comes home around 3:30 p.m. (nine-hour days). If I could have my way, I'd have him home eight minutes after the end of seventh period, but he has to do something he calls "prep." (Sounds made up to me but whatever.) The fact that I am home alone with Rhett until 3:30 is hard enough. But 6:30? Could I do it? Do I want to do it? And what about the effect on Rhett? We start his nighttime routine at 6:30. Chuck would walk through the door minutes before Rhett was put down for the night. They'd see each other only on weekends.
Becoming an administrator would bring to pass only one thing: more money. This difference in pay would give me the option to stay home completely if I ever desired. Or if I continued to work, it would give us bigger inputs for retirement, Rhett's college, home improvements, etc. I know having money doesn't bring happiness; but I strongly believe that not having enough money does bring unhappiness. The money becomes a big factor.
On the other hand, Chuck coming home at 6:30 would leave us almost no time to spend together as a family. He'd get home from work, Chuck would eat dinner (no way I can wait until 6:30), and Rhett would go to bed. That's it. Sure we'd have Saturdays, but is that enough? When I think about what I want for my child, I want him to know his Dad. I want them to spend time together, play in the back yard together, walk the dog together. And as a non-administrator, he has summers off. Sure he gets a job for six weeks, but it leaves us three weeks to do whatever we want. (Of course, we'd have no money to do anything...)
But how do you make this decision? Even now, I feel like our finances are very tight. The extra money would be wonderful. But at what cost?