Monday, June 20, 2011

My Love’s Just Not the SAHM

job application formAs if the Uncool world were not upside down enough, what with the Autoimmune Wonder Twins and all …

My Love is “between jobs.”

Since March.

Panic.

Despair!

Holy guacamole, am I going to need to get a real job again? I’m not fit for 9-to-5 any more. I bruise! I’m A BLEEDER!

MOOOOOM-MYYYYY!

Actually, it’s not that bad. We parental Uncools are a fiscally responsible lot (ahem, coughcough-CHEAP-cough). We are in good standing thanks to our savings, investments and a wicked global demand for my plasma and blood platelets. (Bet My Love is regretting making me snip The Boys now. Then we’d have another $37.83 a whack, I mean, week.)

We are also covered as far as Thing 1’s medical expenses go. Mortgage, no problem. Cars, paid for. Yep, the only thing at risk of being lost around here is someone’s sanity.

Surprise! It ain’t mine.

My Love loves working. LOVES it. However, when the time came for her to make a radical career change, she vowed to do the same with her work-life balance.

“I’ve been working since I was 14, detasseling corn in the arid fields of Nebraska during the day and slaving at a 7-Eleven at night. I’m taking the summer off,” she declared.

“My Love, I give you two weeks before you are willing to clean the grease traps at Burger Sling for minimum wage just to get away from this domestic life.”

“Pfft,” she scoffed in a “there, there, my little at-home daddy” tone.

“I know you, ex-executive goddess. You worked through maternity leave. Both of them. I’d come home and you’d be holding a baby to your boob with one hand, banging out PowerPoint presentations with the other. You are not cut out for laundry and chauffeuring children to playdates. That’s a man’s job.”

Of course, I was wrong.

It took not two weeks, but two months for her crack.

She spent most of her first week of freedom cashing in some of the zillion airline miles she had accumulated from her old job to go skiing with friends in Colorado. Then she took a weekend jaunt to Vermont with some her ex-coworkers. When not gallivanting about, she spent her mornings and afternoons meeting people for meals or coffee or finally using the half dozen spa treatment certificates I had gotten her as presents over the years.

“Honey,” I said one day, “can you take Thing 2 to his baseball game today? I’ve got to coach Thing 1 at soccer practice.”

“Can’t. Having tapas with Pippa Middleton.”

“How about picking them up from school on Thursday? I’ve got a dentist appointment that might run late.”

“Nada,” My Love said. “I’m meeting David and Victoria at the beach.”

“Did I say ‘dentist’? I meant ‘tumor removal surgery’.”

“Still can’t. Sand. Becks. Posh.”

“You know, your being home hasn’t help me out one bit. And when did you start hanging out with English celebrities?”

“I don’t want to disrupt your routine, dear,” she said. “I know how important that is to you.”

My Love soon hit the reality I quickly encountered early in my at-home dadness. It’s fun to play while everyone else is at work, but it quickly becomes hard to find anyone to play with during that time. (I know what your dirty little minds are thinking. She could play with me. But remember, folks, My Love wanted to preserve my routine. That means no weekday extracurriculars with the testiculars.)

In a fit of desperation, My Love made the mistake of all rookie at-hommies. She volunteered to chaperone on a school trip -- escorting Thing 1 and her fellow fifth graders on a trip to Ellis Island to learn about immigration.

Let’s put this in context, shall we:

  • Ninety 10- and 11-year-olds.
  • Bus trip from Connecticut to New Jersey.
  • During both rush hours. On a Friday.
  • Plus a ferry ride.
  • Weather forecast: frequent rain storms.

Eight weeks out of corporate life and My Love forgot all she knew about doing a pre-project cost-benefit analysis.

Let me sum up her experience by quoting the text message she sent me that afternoon:

“Today is the first day
I wish I was at work.”

Welcome back, My Love. Now, let’s take a look at that resume of yours.

19 comments:

  1. I can't imagine...I would've climbed a tall building and jumped during week #2, like you predicted!

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  2. tuning the resume... I know how that feels *puke*

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  3. To be fair, a field trip like that would've broken damn near anyone.

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  4. Yea. She needs to start slow. Jumping into the deep end with a freakin' field trip is probably not the way. Still, sounds like the Uncool Kingdom is perfectly capable of such a shift. Well done.

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  5. I am impressed she lasted two months. I made it three weeks before was screaming whining begging to goback to work. And my husband wanted me back sooner. Way sooner.

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  6. My wife's about to be home for the summer. Which is always something of an *ahem* adjustment. Maybe I should send her down to hang out with My Love.

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  7. My husband has been out of work for awhile now and I know he would jump at the first chance to get back to a work place. Being a SAHD is driving him nuts I think. So, after the field trip was over, did your wife fine tune her resume?

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  8. Does every 5th grade on the East Coast go to Ellis Island? Coming home, our bus broke down. On I-95. In Jersey. On a Friday afternoon. In June. No AC.

    Tell Your Love to hang in there. She will soon discover those two secret "mother's little helpers" that get her though the day: computer solitaire and SAHD blogs.....

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  9. hahahaha. Made me laugh throughout... especially the $37.83 a whack line. I love me a good pun.

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  10. Gotta agree, that field trip would have broken anyone's spirit. You'd think the school system would have taken proactive measures to ensure that trip was planned much earlier in the year. My Love would've been back doing high-powered executive goddess work long ago.

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  11. As a person who's chaperoned two high school field trips across the country, I feel her pain.

    And I feel yours.....I'm the last of the SAHM's around here and that's why I'm on the internet so much!

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  12. Can you please ask your wife if I can join her when she goes swimsuit shopping with Daniel Craig?

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  13. I have a week and a half before I am done for the summer... Here's to being able to not going stir crazy in the first week at home.

    ...and even as a teacher, *I* wouldn't have volunteered for THAT!!

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  14. I can barely take the Mondays - ONE DAY OF THE WEEK!! - when my husband isn't at work...and better yet, I'm usually AT work on those days, so you both are troopers!

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  15. Hands down, the funniest post I've read all week. While I do work from home mostly (and not just on my blog) my wife is an office person too, and she loves her worky.

    I do think sometimes she regrets not spending as much time at home with our daughter, but that hasn't translated into her leaving the corporate life yet. And if she did, I think two weeks would be a generous time frame before some type of ugly implosion occurred.

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  16. Intending all the best for you!!!!





    Aloha from Honolulu :)

    Comfort Spiral

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  17. Rookie Mistake. It's also a rookie mistake of new teachers to volunteer for too many things. My bad.

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  18. I sometimes wish I didn't have a job, but I think I'd crack sooner than two months. :)

    Hope she finds work sooner.

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