Monday, August 12, 2013

Employed.

As most of you know, I had a job interview last week to be a barista at a coffee shop.  The interview was interesting. For starters, I had never been on the opposite side of the spectrum, in terms of age. The interviewers were in their mid 20's, and here I was, trying to hide my gray hairs. It went smoothly, they seemed like really sweet people. Perhaps a bit too hipster for me in that the experience of drinking coffee has brought them to tears before. But who am I? I've seen credit card commercials that have brought out the shaking sobs in me before. 

I left feeling confident. I'd spent most of my early twenties making and serving coffee. I can do it in my sleep. And the sheer thought of doing it again reminded me of my youth, and a more simpler time. Jim with his decaf orange spice tea, Tom with his huge world mug filled with our drip of the day, leaving about an inch of room for cream. Jackie with her one shot decaf, extra hot, extra foam, nonfat chai tea. The regulars, the conversation, the feeling that I am an important part of those people's days... Okay, I'm not in complete denial, we all know it was the beverage that was the important part, but still.

3 days a week. Two weeknights 6pm-midnight and Sunday mornings 8am-2pm. Those were the hours they threw around when talking about the position. I could do that. Tony would be home and I wouldn't have to worry about someone watching my kids. Lets be real, the job wouldn't pay for someone to watch my kids! I got home and cuddled with my baby. As I say there, something stirred in me, I shoved it down. I was excited. I could potentially have a life outside of my children. Which was something I somewhat longed for. I love my kids. They are my life. But I didn't want to lose who I am and the. Wake up 18 years from now with an empty nest and an identity crisis.  

Later that night as I put Declan in his jammies and sat down to cuddle and rock with him before laying him in his crib, that thing began to stir again. Maybe it was the Beatles lullaby music on the CD player, or the burrito I had for lunch, but this time I didn't ignore it. What was I doing? Sitting here, snuggling this little man, giving him my undivided attention, was one of my favorite parts of the day. Wy would I give this up? He's not ready, I'm not ready. What am I doing? 

Now I know there are moms out there who are thinking, "it's guilt. Don't you think if you just weaned him that he would be fine?" Yes, I could wean him, and he would be fine, but that's not the point. It's not even about nursing. It's about the fact that when I had one baby, sure I could wean him and go out and get a part time job and have little problem knowing Daddy was home putting him to bed at night. But he isn't my first, or my second, or even my third. He's my fourth. And do you have any idea how nonexistent his one on one time with me is? That time before he goes to sleep at night is the one and only time during the day that he gets me, all of me. It's sacred and I'm not willing to give it up. Not yet. 

So I made up my mind, unless the job was one shift on Sunday morning, I wasn't going to take it. 

So when the call came on Saturday and the guy on the other end said, "so you want a job?" My response was, "It depends. What hours are you offering?" And to my surprise, he responded with, "What hours do you want?" 

A short conversation later, I'm happy to say, I will be a contributing member of society on Sunday mornings. Call it a blessing, call it what you will, but I didn't compromise what I thought I wanted for what my family needed. And I'm okay with that. In fact, I'm more than okay, I'm happy. 

7 comments:

ADC said...

I know you know this but...you are already a contributing member to society as a SAHM. You don't have to have a "job" to do that.

Signed,
Your work-from-home-mom-friend-with-a-nanny

Glory Laine said...

Perfect! Miss you, Love you!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for daring to think and go outside the SAHM comfort zone. While I only have two babies (7 and 3) I couldn't imagine leaving them at home for even a couple of hours while I did something like get a job mostly because I fear the change. There are rare occasions that I can go grocery shopping or something of the like by myself and I feel guilty that I don't have a kid in tow. Maybe one of these days (when my youngest little is in school full time) I'll do something outside the house but until then I'll live vicariously through you.

Carrie Jones said...

Thanks ADC, your words are wise and comforting.

Carrie Jones said...

Glory Laine, you have no idea how much we miss you and your family! Christmas can't come soon enough.

Carrie Jones said...

Anonymous, I'm curious. What is it about change that you fear? I understand feeling comfortable in staying home and that I don't HAVE to be anywhere or do anything if I don't want to. This is definitely a commitment. But it is worth the few hours I am away one day a week to remind myself I am more than a mother. I am smart. I am capable of getting dressed and presenting myself in a manner to which I can speak intelligently to other adults. I have lost myself in my children, and that's okay. But I also think it's more than okay to show my kids that Mom can do more than change diapers, feed, and bathe them. That Mom is a person too, with thoughts and ideas of her own. And I am leaving them in the most capable and loving hands... Daddy deserves some one on one time with them as well. :)

Anonymous said...

I suppose I'm mostly afraid of the change in routine. I've been a stay at home mom/wife for more than 8 years and I've definitely gotten comfortable. I guess I'm kind of afraid of shaking things up and not having the same routine every day. I've lost myself in my roles as mom and wife. Perhaps I do need something where I can be myself even if it's just for a couple of hours a week. Plus I'm sure my husband would like some uninterrupted time with our girls! He doesn't get much time alone with them (or me for that matter) because he works shift work. Thanks for getting me thinking and making me realize that I can still be myself and a functioning adult as well as being a mom and wife.