I’ve been looking for a job lately. I know what you’re thinking… “You already have a job. Or ten.” True. I am a homeschool mother of three who tour guides at church and drives kids to karate, clogging, and play practice, who cooks and cleans, who helps run a business, who runs this blog, blah blah blah. I get that. But I have been looking for outside employment for the past few months. First I babysat. That was disastrous… and unpredictable. Now I’m looking for part time gainful employment.
I must admit that I’ve had anxiety about working outside of the home. Didn’t we agree in the beginning that my staying home with the kids was what was best for them? How would the kids react to this change? Would they balk at the thought of, gasp, having to be away from their loving, devoted mother a few hours a week? Would they cry and worry because I wasn’t around to share every little moment with them?
I decided to find out. I asked Hunter, the 8 year old, how he would feel if I got a job. Of course, I was expecting him to tell me how much he’d hate it. How he’d miss me and needed me around all of the time. His response? “It might be good because it would give us a chance to know daddy a little better.”
What a wise little old man he is. I was (am?) an only child. My mom and I? Inseparable. So much so that once, when I was a baby and she left me at home with my dad to do some shopping, I cried the entire time. Maybe that isn’t so unusual but my dad took it so personally that my mom literally never left me alone with my dad again. Literally never again. Don’t get me wrong, I saw him every single day at dinner and the three of us spent a lot of time together. But me and my dad, just the two of us? Never. Except for maybe a few awkward trips out to shop for gifts for mama. It took my mom’s dying for my dad and me to learn to be in a room together without her around. We are totally cool now but did it have to take so long for us to get there?
I can’t help but often think of what our relationship might have been. It would have been really nice if he and I had some hobbies that we enjoyed together. Or maybe a standing lunch date. Or just something. Right?
It’s not quite like that around here. I mean, all three of my children have had ample time with their dad. Heck, Hunter lived with his dad in the hospital off and on for months. Drayken spends hours and hours alone in daddy bliss each week. And recently Ronin even watched a movie with her dad. Just the two of them. But the amount of time they spend with me far outweighs the amount of time they spend with their dad. And maybe that isn’t a good thing.
So I have decided that it won’t kill me to leave for a few hours each week. I have enough confidence in my relationship with my children to believe that they will totally still love me and be my sweet babies even if they spend a little less time with me.
Update: Since I first wrote this post, I not only was rejected, yet again, from one of the only jobs I’ve ever actually wanted but I have decided to no longer look for employment outside of the home. I have, however, started looking for only writing jobs or social media related odd jobs. And I have started learning how and and where I can start doing stand up. So while the details of this post no longer apply, the spirit of it does. I will be more cognizant of opportunities to leave the kids in the care of their dad once in a while. He needs it. They need it. Hey, even I need it.