Monday, November 9, 2015

5 Jobs Parenting has Qualified Me For

There was a point in time that I poured my blood, sweat, and tears in the "real" working world. I had a career. I had goals and ambitions that revolved around my career.

What? You thought I've always sat at home in my pajamas, writing nonsensical blog posts and books? Sipping on coffee in the morning and wine at night, enjoying the "good life" of staying in the house all day, with no *real* responsibilities?

No. Quite the opposite. Sometimes, I wish it was that simple.

As a matter of fact, I worked through the pregnancies, babyhoods, and childhoods of my first four children in the business world. But, then, the tables turned and I found myself at home with the children.

It didn't take long at all for me to realize that changing diapers, reading children's books, watching Little Einsteins, and hanging out in my pajamas wasn't going to be enough for me.

Not even close.

The hustle and bustle of business management didn't have anything on stay at home motherhood, regarding keeping me busy, yet I found that there was a lot missing in my life. If I wasn't working, I didn't feel like I was doing what I was supposed to do.

I felt like I had lost my worth. Most WAHM's who transition to SAHM's experience this same thing. It's almost losing and rediscovering yourself.

I have been fortunate enough to establish a WAHM career (which I just love!), but if I ever did end up going back into the *real* working world, my 16 years of parenting nine children has certainly qualified me for a whole new line of careers.

Here's just five that I've come up with so far:

1. Crisis Negotiator - I just love James Patterson's books! And Alex Cross, his main character, is also quite lovable. He often finds himself in hostage negotiation situations in his field of work as a detective in Washington D.C.

Dude, I could sooooo do that! Are you kidding me? I have had to negotiate worse situations between nine different children on a daily basis for almost two decades now! Like the mornings when I'm fighting against the clock to get six children on three different buses and there is one who just isn't having a good morning, as just one example.

I'm understating the morning situation a bit, but most of you will understand the types of mornings I'm talking about. It takes strategic negotiation, patience, and a whole lot of wit. You have to portray that you are on your child's side, similar to a crisis negotiator. 

You also have to win the child's trust, keep your voice calm and consoling, and convince the kid that the idea to get ready to go and get on that bus on time is theirs. The standoff can feel like days, but, in reality, it only lasts minutes.

The truth is, you can have all the training in the world, but if you haven't been through crisis negotiations with children, you don't have the ultimate skills to be a crisis negotiator.

2. Lion Tamer - I don't mean to be a braggart, but I have house trained my children pretty darn good. They pee in the bathroom, and aim it somewhere on, around, and sometimes even in the toilet. 

They respond amazingly to treats, sitting and performing other commands for rewards. At bedtime, a reward entices them to lay down after I (repeatedly) tell them to (100 times). We're still working on that one.

Any parent can vouch for the fact that it's not all peaches n cream with kids. A lion can't be any harder than nine children!

Considering I have trained nine children so well, I would think these skills would make me maybe even overqualified as a lion tamer.

3. Ring Master - Just because one has the talent and skills to tame a lion doesn't qualify them as a ring master. You can ask anyone who has been to my house! I can almost make it look like I am capable of running a completely organized three ring circus!

People who come to visit watch in awe as I wrangle a crawling baby in one, a toddler in another room, while the four- and six-year-old walk my nerves like a tightrope with their shenanigans. Heck, I am a Ring Master!

4. Chauffer - Two words: Family Van. I mean, who would be more qualified to be a chauffer than someone who coordinates driving nine children to activities, doctors appointments, school events, church, friends' houses, and everywhere else they need and want to go?

Then, I have to get them all to these places safely, despite bickering and teasing and even screaming and crying. Really, I mean, who else could be more qualified?

5. Life Coach - From fashion consultant to career advisor to relationship counselor, I have played all of the roles that a life coach requires. I am a cheerleader, a mentor, and someone who is always there to handle any "life questions" that come along.

I figure that, despite how much I rant and complain about my brood, I also have some bragging rights that stem from all of my kiddos achieving the best grades that they can accomplish, earning scholarships to their amazing schools, and becoming the sweet, intelligent, thoughtful, caring kids that they are today.

I'm sure that I could list plenty of other jobs that I am now qualified for after almost 16 years of mothering. Maybe I'll make another list in the future.

In the meantime, which jobs do you now qualify for?
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