December 20 2012 115

I’m a writer and social media specialist in the DFW area. I’m the founder and editor-in-chief of LiberalAmerica.org, a popular niche news site. It makes me happy to write about issues that affect people like me, the future of my children, and “the least of these” in society. Most importantly, I’m able to have a part of putting a little cash in the pockets of some great liberal minds who write for our site. It’s very rewarding.

Before I decided to own my own life, my career focus was on programs for at-risk youth, youth offenders, unemployed people, foster kids, and workforce development. I worked 50-60 (or more) hours a week most weeks for about 10 years. I also had a very long commute. I was passionate about changing lives. In the last few years, I’ve merged my love of technology and social media, human services, and writing. You can visit my LinkedIn profile for more information. My high-stress jobs in Corporate America, running programs as a contractor for various small and large non-profit and for-profit organizations, were very rewarding. I was doing important and life-saving work either directly FOR “the least of these” or in a way that impacted them.

I take a lot of pride in the fact that I’ve “made a difference” in some people’s lives. I’m the kind of person who is defined by her work. If I don’t leave the world somehow better in some small way, my life will have been a waste. But what I learned from my years in Corporate America is that when you give blood, sweat, and tears, sometimes it’s rewarded, and sometimes you just come away dehydrated. The cost to my family’s quality of life and my own health was more than I was willing to continue paying.

So you know what? Enough.

When the opportunity presented itself (a GOOD thing, trust), I downgraded my family’s lifestyle and got rid of almost all of our bills except the absolute necessities. Then I closed my eyes, asked my children to trust me, grabbed their hands, and we JUMPED. We quite literally had only a few thousand dollars in the bank when we started this journey, which stretched pretty far with very few bills. It was a little scary, but we had faith in the Lord and in ourselves and everything always seemed to work out just in time.

We’ve never looked back. I’m home when they get home from school almost every day. I’m free to take them to afternoon activities, pick them up from school when they’re sick, go to church, and I get to tell them good night instead of quietly kissing their foreheads as they sleep. I also am able to focus my energy into making a living doing things that I enjoy doing.

I’ve found that if you’re good at what you do, love what you do, and you’ve worked hard over the years to build a solid reputation, you don’t have to frantically look for work. It comes to you. The truth is, I work as much as I ever have. But it’s on my time, my family’s schedule, and my commute is from my bed to my desk.

USA Today wrote an article about me and my decision to choose quality of life. Now don’t get it twisted. We weren’t “living large” anyhow. We garden, my children have never known city living, and we lived for years without TV (by choice). My children and I are simple people with complex minds.

So you may see photos of our humble little cottage, or see me driving about town in an older but reliable car (THANK you Dave Ramsey!). It’s the path we’ve purposely taken. We’ve chosen quality of life over “things” with large payments attached.

Above all else, I’m a Christian and strive daily to follow the example of Jesus Christ.

Please feel free to follow me on Facebook, connect with me via LinkedIn, or follow me on TwitterClick here for more contact information.

* To add me on LinkedIn, go to your contacts page and click “add a contact.” Enter email address [email protected]

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