Times are tough. How has the economy affected life in your home? Have you stuck to buying generic brands versus name brands? Started your own garden versus buying produce? Or maybe you've really embraced the DIY spirit and made your own instruments, among other things?Let's face it, in this economy it's hard to take anything for granted. Actually, I'd argue that's been the case for the past decade or two. There has never been so much uncertainty in terms of finding a job. Even people in occupations we thought were always safe bets, such as teachers, firefighters and even doctors, have been laid off over the years. It got me thinking about what the future might look like for my daughter 20 years from now or even 30 years from now. Last week, there were layoffs at my work; I survived this round, but I'm always holding my breath. I've been laid off four times in my professional life. It sucks. (But I'm still standing. I just have a weakness for startups.) And as I sat through those grueling two hours not knowing if I still had a job or not-a parade of colleagues were getting pulled into offices and coming out none too happy-what was surprising to me was that I wasn't as panicked as those previous times. Is it because I'm numb to the process since I've been through it so many times? I've heard so many parents talk about how after having kids, the things that used to upset them (including people they despised), just didn't bother them as much. During that tense waiting time, I was thinking, okay, my daughter's main source of food is still me, she gets hand-me-down's as gifts all the time, we could save money on daycare, I could write those books I've wanted to...I was almost feeling more anxious about being free than scared about not having a paycheck. Because, in the end, there is one job I can take for granted for life: parent. And while it is the toughest job I've ever had, and I'm definitely still in training -aren't we all?-nothing beats the pay. When the going gets tough, the tough can always take a nap before getting going. :) Our First-Time Mommy suggests these soothing releases to relax to.