~This was originally posted on August, 12, 2011~
A few weeks ago, I took my girls out to get some frozen yogurt. While we sat outside and enjoyed our treats, we ended up discussing what they want to be when they grow up. Megan commented that she did not want to be a mommy when she got older "because it's too much work!"
In a completely unrelated part of my life, I have been asked to review and critique a particular job description. (Not a job for me, btw).
Put the two together and, you guessed it - I started thinking about what a mom's job description would look like. What I have actually come up with is not so much a description, but a list of all the different jobs that are encompassed under the title of MOM. At some point or another, all moms will find themselves in the following "occupations" (whether we meant to or not!):
- Teacher - Not only do we help with homework and correct their manners and grammar, we are expected to have the correct answers to endless questions. We explain everything from simple addition, to how colors mix, to why you shouldn't hit your sister. In short, it is up to us explain how the universe works.
- Nurse - We change dirty diapers. We clean up vomit. We kiss and bandage cuts. We administer medicine. See? Nurse.
- Chauffeur - Until children can drive themselves (Lord help us!), we have to get them EVERYWHERE they need to go. We take them to school, church, birthday parties, playdates, soccer practice, softball games, dance class, doctors and dentist appointments - you name it! One particularly busy day last week I spent a total of almost 4 hours in my minivan taking kids back and forth. I am definitely a chauffeur - it's just too bad I don't actually have a fancy limousine with one of those fancy privacy screens between the front and back! :)
- Chef - No matter whether we prepare the meals ourselves or grab some take out along the way, we still have to figure out how and what to feed our brood three times a day (plus snacks!). With crazy schedules and picky eaters, that is no easy task!
- Waitress - "Mommy, can you get _______ for me?" That is something I probably hear at least a hundred times a day. Unfortunately, I never get any tips!
- Fashion advisor - Especially with three girls (all of whom have very different opinions about clothes), I have to be a fashion advisor more often than I would like. Sometimes, my advice is not well received, either. This is one part of the job that was definitely easier when they were too little to talk and they wore whatever I put on them! :)
- Hair Dresser - Again, this is something that is probably a bigger deal for moms with daughters. One of mine wants her hair short; one wants it super long and refuses to get it cut. I constantly deal with curls, braids, and tangles. No wonder my own hair is usually in a ponytail!
- Maid - This one is pretty obvious. As moms, we do dishes and laundry, make beds, sweep and mop, wipe up spills, and organize closets. We straighten toy bins and bookshelves. We pick up shoes and book bags and dirty towels. I could keep going, but I'm sure you get the picture.
- Secretary - We are the ones responsible for scheduling doctor appointments, dentist visits, parent conferences, and extracurricular activities. We have to fill out all the paperwork and permission slips. We have to remember all the birthdays and holidays. Personally, I have three calendars in order to keep it all straight - one on my computer, one on my refrigerator, and one on my phone!
- Safety monitor - OSHA has got nothing on us moms!!! How many times a day do you say "Be careful" or "Get down before you fall" or "You'll poke your eye out!"???? And if one of our precious babies does get hurt, we blame ourselves, of course. "If only I'd been watching more closely" or "I shouldn't have let her do that." As they get older we teach them about stranger danger and I've already had conversations with my two oldest about internet safety. Keeping kids safe these days is no easy task.
- Lawyer/Judge - I can't even begin to estimate how many hours a day I spend settling disputes - who sits in the front/back; whose turn it is to pick a t.v. show; who gets to go first; who goes with dad and who goes with mom. Occasionally, I also have to figure out which one is telling the truth and which/if one is being less than honest. It is never ending!!
- Event Planner - We plan birthday parties, playdates, sleepovers, and school parties. We organize fundraisers and fellowship events. Once in a while, we may even plan a date night with our hubby or a vacation. Who knew that some people actually get paid to do this stuff?!?
- Psychologist - Now I have been accused of being slightly over-analytical. However, every mom I know has, at one time or another, thought "What is going on with my kid? Is he/she stressed/sad/feeling neglected? Should I be concerned about ADD/ADHD/etc.?" And most importantly - "Is this normal and how can I fix it?" Psychology 101.
- IT technician - In my house, my hubby is the super tech. But, on the everyday basis, it is often up to me. The computer won't connect to the web. The DVD player won't work. The Wii won't connect. Can you out that song on my iPod, too? Who has to figure it out?? Me!
- Magician - O.K. this is the last one. I just thought of it when my little one brought me a broken toy and asked "Can you fix this?" It also comes into play when they say things like "I wish it would stop raining" or "I can't go to sleep" or "I wish these peas tasted like chocolate cake!" Too bad the hospital was out of magic wands and owners manuals every single time I had a baby there!!!
I'm sure most of you have read those articles that explain the salary a mom should receive if she were to get paid for everything she does. I found ones that said about $60,000 all the way up to $115,000 or more. There are multiple arguments stating also that these numbers are utterly ridiculous. The fact is that the job of being a mom often seems unappreciated. We don't receive a paycheck. We may occasionally receive a "thank you," but even those can be hard to come by. So why do we moms (and dads) do all that we do??? Because, even though they sometimes drive us crazy and even though their demands are often unreasonable, we love our kids and they make our job worthwhile. In the end, we receive much more than a paycheck!
There are 15 things on my list. Can you think of something I forgot?? Leave a comment and add it to the list!