I have been out of the workforce for five years. It is the fashion equivalent to a passage of time back to when stirrup pants were popular.
Every moment, I become less relevant as policy change and forward motion dictate I have no place at the table. And, if I am sitting at the table, I should probably put on a bra.
Lately, I have been thinking more and more about plunging back in. Next year, 3 of the 4 will be in some form of school. And, I would be remiss if I didn’t admit here, of all places, that I miss daily adult conversation and showering regularly. Besides, I could use a break. A lunch break.
But, on the ping-pong table of life, I am the ball being hit into the fray. I go back and forth between my desire to return to work, my desire to never return to work and the knowledge that I am no longer qualified, on paper, for any job. Truth be told, I was never qualified for any of the jobs I ever held. I had moxie. During my corporate tenure, moxie was enough to slowly climb the slippery ladder to the middle. After maxing out my moxie only to slide down a la Chutes and Ladders with a salute and a crash landing into, “This stay-at-home mothering stuff seemed easier when I was daydreaming about it behind my gorgeous desk!”.
So it goes. Reality is what happens when all of your dreams come true.
While I acknowledge, with mother-fucking gratitude, the time I’ve been given at home with my children, I must also admit that it has not been all love, light, roses and perfect library trips. Nothing ever is. While I worked, I thought of nothing other than being home. At home, I struggled to find myself outside of mom. Grass, green and brown on both sides with all the lovely shades in between.
It’s always complicated.
Daily, I hem. I haw. I haw. I hee. I think, re-think and over think.
I worry that the knowledge, skills and borderline psychic abilities I’ve obtained raising small children at home will not translate to a resume or, my biggest current fear, during an interview.
Will I strain out of my seat to remove a pen cap from the interviewer’s mouth. Will I eat his or her sandwich crusts? When an awkward question is asked, will I jump out of my chair to divert attention away; doing the hokey pokey and turning my self around? Is that really what it’s all about? Clap clap.
As I look at jobs available, I struggle to make the reach between what I think I’m worth in an office and what I know I’m worth at home. Putting a confident dollar amount over my head when I’d be happy with a Clark Bar and unfettered access to a bathroom I don’t have to clean.
The fact that I’m thinking about making the leap means it’s time to stop bouncing on the board. It’s almost time to dive and to translate everything the children have taught me about patience, trusting my gut, showing up whether you feel up to it or not and Damn. Hard. Work. into a new kind of office. The best bosses I’ve ever had preparing me for a new one I won’t love nearly as much.
As I come to grips with the truth that my need of them is starting to outweigh their need of me, I have to count to three, start to let go and maybe buy a collared shirt. And, somehow transform the amazing speed and efficiency I’ve developed over the years changing crap filled diapers into dollah-dollah-billz.