One day while picking my kids from school, I met a parent who asked me “Do you work? I said, “Yes, I am a stay at home mom.” My response generated a puzzled look on her face.
I want to proclaim that contrary to the common belief, stay at home does not equate to leisure; it actually means working overtime. It also means that I reside in my workplace, thus, I end up working all the time, sometimes in my sleep too.
To further elucidate my theory, I decided to make a Mom’s resumé and share it with the world.
To raise children to become kind, responsible and independent adults.
I jumped into the Mom job with no past experience or training, and it all started when I swallowed a watermelon or so I was told when I carried my first baby; and then the other. I was unsure about my new job responsibilities until the blessed day came, and the nurse handed me our first newborn all wrapped up in a cute bundle. It was at that moment, I knew, I was hired for life!
I have the ability to function in a chaotic work environment while nurturing my demanding and lovable clients (my kids).
Roles and Responsibilities
Following are the roles and skills I have acquired during the mom job, and the list is somewhat dynamic like in any other resumé.
Chef- I can cook and serve multiple dishes before hell breaks loose; from an easy peasy Mac & Cheese to elaborate soups and entrée.
Housecleaner– I am all the time cleaning, even when I cook, I am cleaning. Actually, cleaning should be my middle name! And, yet when I am done (am I ever?) I still see the mess around – wonder what happened to all that cleaning.
Laundry Services– I make sure that the never-ending loads of clothes are washed in time, and are folded eventually, and few lucky ones get to the stage of ironing.
Reader– I read aloud to keep my little audience engaged until their eyes are ready to pop out of excitement during the day, and become droopy at bedtime.
Sleep Fairy -I tuck the kids in their beds and kiss them goodnight. Then I check for monsters under their beds and wave my magic wand to sprinkle sleep dust in their room. I sing in my not so melodious voice, which my kids find very comforting; and they gradually snooze.
Security Officer – After my kids are asleep, I start my night shift and often take rounds to check on them. I tuck them back in their blankets as their tiny hand or leg extends uncovered, and kiss their foreheads, again!
Alteration Tailor– From Halloween costumes to the little stuff toys that live with my kids; I have learned to mend and alter them to their satisfaction.
Doctor and Nurse On-Call — I manage multi-level medical severity; some boo-boos heal with a kiss or a cuddle, sometimes just a tickle; while some require a band-aid or medication. For more serious ones, I shuttle the children to the outside doctor.
Short sleeper – I am not blessed with the special mutated gene, but I can go without much sleep for multiple nights until the sleep debt becomes too heavy to carry, and then I cave in. This skill is required to care when my children fall sick. WARNING- Use of this skill makes me sooooooo grumpy!
Educator– From instilling everyday life morals, values, and faith, to preparing them for school is part of my job. As an in-house educator, I work in partnership with the school teachers for the welfare and optimal growth of my children.
Coach– I introduce my kids to manners and etiquettes, and this is a skill that needs some more practice. When my kids get an ice-cream or a candy they forget to say ‘thank you’; but who needs to hear the words when the twinkle in their eyes says it all?
Event Planner– I plan birthday parties, which includes deciding on the theme, decorations, games, food and the invites. I goof up at times but my kids appreciate the hard work and are cool about the occasional mishaps.
Chauffeur– I shuttle my children to and from swim lessons, soccer classes and play dates, driving safely but sometimes a little fast, to catch up, but still SAFELY.
Mood Enhancer– When my kids feel crabby and blue, I try to elevate their spirits. We perform the following activities together to let the bad air out- baking cookies, silly dancing to a fast tune, tickling and lastly talking about it.
Gardner– I involve my kids in little gardening projects, so they learn to care and nourish. They feel satisfied to see the plant grow or sometimes disappointed when the seed does not sprout.
Personal shopper– I take the kids to shop for their clothes and shoes, or I shop for them, mindful of their preferences. I ensure that the appropriate seasonal clothes are available in their wardrobe.
Bug Control Squad– When encountered with nasty bugs like scorpions, I have the ability to generate a high pitch scream accompanied by few mindless jumps; until the combat comes to an end, as I squish the rascal with a shoe. Bam!!! Gotcha!
Playmate– I try to carve out some time to play with the kids after their school. We play tag, board games or video games.
Boredom Pal– When it is time to include some unstructured free time into the kids routine, I change into this role, gently persuading them to find work they like to do. After some whining and period of inactivity, they surprise me with their creativity, from making stick figures to playing a tune on the piano and doing pretend plays.
Problem Solver-When both my kids want to play with the same toy or view different TV programs at the same time, I deploy my creative problem-solving skills.
Organizer/travel packer– With multiple travel plans lined up, I pack (or overpack mostly) for my kids to make sure that they have enough of clothes and entertainment items for the trip.
With my husband’s help, I get through the days and nights as we share the joys and difficulties of parenting , but I am in awe to think about the hard work the ‘corporate moms’ put in, trying to balance their careers and raising the kids responsibilities.
And I cannot even fathom the challenges and dilemma single parents face being the sole breadwinner and also a caretaker!
I juggle numerous roles in a day, and at times fantasize of having magical multiple arms, so that I can sit and read while my other arms extend to make food, fold laundry, help with homework, write a blog and play ‘chutes and ladder’ with my children. After all, I am a working mom! Don’t get me wrong, though, for I love my mom job and I am not looking for a change…EVER; for when I am glum, those little arms around my neck get my happy back.