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The back story

My husband was given an ultimatum. Either move our family to Canada and take a 40% cut in pay, or leave the company. The ultimatum came out of the blue and caught us by surprise. My husband had been with the company for over 3 years and steadily rose up in rank. He planned to be there for at least another 2 years before moving on to the next stage in his career.  However, with the ultimatum his plans changed.  

We really didn’t want to uproot a family of 5, and every time we thought about winters in Canada we could hear Sweetie Brown say “ I got bronchitis, ain’t nobody got time for that!” Luckily, we had achieved financial independence (FI) so the decision was easy. He decided to leave the company. 

Once the decision to leave the company was made, we had to figure out our next move.  Although we were FI, my husband loved what he was doing so retirement wasn’t an option. Many people tend to FI, because their work gets in the way of their passions. On the other hand, my husband’s job is his passion. After running through different scenarios, we finally decided that my husband would launch his own company. 

New adventure, new worries

Healthcare

Although our plan sounds cool, I’m a little worried about healthcare. We have three young children and one of them has a pre-existing health condition.  We had excellent coverage with his job, now we have to figure out new options.

We now have to become an overnight experts in health insurance and pick one that is the best for family and our circumstance. The temporary solution is to switch to COBRA, but it’s very expensive and doesn’t last forever.  

We’ve now made all of our Drs appointment to be before our current health coverage ends. We are also making sure the whole family is eating healthier and making it a priority to get in shape.

I know I could solve it by going back to my old corporate job, but that goes against the reasons why we chose FI. I shouldn’t be miserable at a job just so I can have adequate health insurance. In addition, the last few years, my main role was that of Mom and I don’t to be forced to join the workforce again.

Entrepreneurship

We also have to be realistic that launching a company might not be that easy. There will be lots of long nights, little time spent with family, and a lot of pressure to perform.  I’ve launched companies before, but my husband is taking on something that is much bigger and way more complicated. Although he is very talented and hardworking, I know there are going to be times when we will just have to go on faith. It might be a bumpy ride, but at least he has the option to try.  

How we are preparing

To prepare for this new adventure, we are analyzing our finances and lowering our expenses. Our goal is to keep life as normal as possible for our children. They know something has changed, but they are too young to fully understand the situation. 

The Children

We have explained to them that for the foreseeable future we will be focusing on experiences rather than possessions. We are still having fun, but not relying on money to do it. Our older kids have learned to ride bikes and are now really concentrated on learning how to make bubbles with gum!!

We are also putting our son in daycare. Although I didn’t picture sending him to school this early, I know it’s the best decision. He is at the age where he needs lots of play time, socialization, and just a huge amount of attention. It’s an extra expense, but it allows us to focus on getting the new business up and running. 

Budgeting

We’ve instituted the famous meals of the week schedule — Meatless Monday, Taco Tuesday, Wild Caught Wednesday, Crockpot Thursday etc. to help budget and save time. It cuts down on the grocery bill, provides a routine, and the kids like it.

To help with our mortgage we have rented out our extra apartment at a higher rent. We are also holding off on any home improvements that aren’t totally necessary.

We also decided that I would come up with side hustles so we wouldn’t deplete our savings. I want to keep a flexible schedule, make decent money and contribute to the new dream without sacrificing my spirit. I have a few ideas in mind and am interested in seeing how well I’ll do. I also hope to learn a few new skills in the process!! If you have any recommendations, let me know!

Conclusion

We had ideas of what to do when working became optional, but having the decision brought to us earlier was eye opening. It’s funny, we have the choice to do what we want, but instead of moving to a tropical island, we’ve decided to keep things the same.

I guess financial independence really does mean different things to different people. This time financial independence gave us the choice to start a new work chapter and we’re grateful for it. 

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