Hello Everyone! My name is Alyse and I am the Chief Homemaking Officer (CHO)! I am in my late 20s and I am married to an amazing husband. We currently live in San Antonio, Texas. We are both transplants to the state and we love it here very much. I was raised as an Air Force Brat and moved 10 times around the world in 18 years. When my dad decided to retire from the Air Force after I graduated high school, we moved here and have lived here for about 11 years. My husband, who is originally from Iowa, has lived here with me ever since his separation from the Air Force.
My husband and I met shortly after I graduated high school. My family was stationed in South Korea, near Seoul, and my husband, who was also in the Air Force, was assigned to his first duty station farther south. We met online and things just clicked. We maintained a long-distance relationship while I was going to college and he was completing his enlistment with the Air Force. For some time, we were literally on opposite sides of the world from each other. It was rough at times, but oh so worth it. We both grew as individuals at that time, but we also built a very strong foundation for our marriage.
Even though my husband and father are no longer actively serving, the military community will always have a special place in my heart. My past experiences inspired me to go to school in order to help those in the community. I have a B.S. in Education and an M.A. in Human Services Counseling with a specialty in Military Resilience. However, even with this education, I have found it difficult to find employment in my career of choice. But I have been able to help others by becoming a writing tutor for high school and college students. My years as a tutor has been very rewarding. Nonetheless I still feel like I can do more to help others.
What Else Can I Tell You?
Living With Chronic Pain
One major reason I have had a difficult time finding work is that I have been struggling with chronic pain and fatigue since I was a teenager. This has made it very difficult to be able to work a regular office job. I have some days where I can function like a normal person and others where it is hard to get out of bed. That makes it difficult to be any kind of normal mental health professional. I am learning how to be creative in sharing my experience and expertise with others while still accommodating to my own needs.
Unfortunately, until recently, I have not had a doctor willing to test me for any kind of condition. Fibromyalgia runs in my family and it is likely that I have the condition as well. My previous doctors have all said that I was too young to be experiencing these symptoms and let me go on my merry way. Thankfully, I have finally found a primary care physician who listens to me and has started testing me. For those who don’t know, a Fibromyalgia diagnosis is a diagnosis of exclusion. This means that I must be tested for all kinds of other conditions (e.g. Lupus, Arthritis, MS, etc.) and have all negative results before being diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. So, I have a long road ahead of me on that in order to have answers.
Another interesting tidbit about myself is that my husband, my parents and I have agreed to live in a multi-generational household. This means that yes, we live with my parents, and we plan to be living with them in the long term. This is something that seems to be rather frowned upon in our immediate community. But we see a lot of benefits in living in a multi-generational household.
This living situation started with my parents helping my husband and I with a rough patch of my husband separating from the military and starting school; me completing my undergrad, starting graduate school and working; and just trying to get our lives in order. However, as time went by, we noticed that this can be a symbiotic living situation. My parents struggle to do some things now, and I am able to pick up the slack whenever necessary. And splitting the cost of living with my parents allows my husband and I to live in an area we wouldn’t be able to afford otherwise and still save money for our future. My parents will also have the opportunity to save more money for their retirement!
It may seem a little one-sided to some, but we believe we are all positively affected with this lifestyle. Things may be hard sometimes, but it’s a good thing we all like each other…most of the time.
What is a CHO?
The title was inspired by my mother, who was a stay at home mother when I was growing up. She used to make jokes about how she wore many different hats. She would be a plumber one day, an electrician the next, and so on. In my experience, stay at home mothers have been judged a lot by others. Some people just do not understand how much work many stay at home mothers and wives have on their hands. So, I wanted to give these women an official and important sounding title because, well, they are very important. Companies have CEOs and COOs and so on. So, families now have CHOs. The CHO keeps the household running and no two days are the same for a CHO.
Why start the CHO blog?
To be completely honest, after several years of failing to find employment in my field of choice, I was trying to find a way to share my story and hopefully help others. A blog was a great way to do just that. I have also accepted the role as my family’s CHO. I will admit that I was hoping to work a little longer out of the house and have at least a child before taking on the role. But life happened and I am just rolling with it. Thankfully, I have an amazing support system that is encouraging me along the way.
The Chief Homemaking Officer is a lifestyle blog. When you visit the site, you will see posts discussing a variety of topics. Because no two days are the same for a CHO, you may see me write a review about a local event one day and the next talk about mental health. Or, I might want to share my favorite recipe one day and then discuss my favorite skincare products the next. This blog will discuss everything that goes on in the life of a Chief Homemaking Officer.
Thanks for visiting and I hope you will follow along on my journey!
The Chief Homemaking Officer