IMG_0153Just when I think I have things all figured out, I get surprised. I’m not sure I like that. I mean, when the surprise catches me off guard and shakes everything I thought I had figured out–I find I am really lost! Maybe I had figured it out, but it was the wrong answer.

Life just doesn’t make it easy for me sometimes. I hate that. Which is ironic, because my life is anything but easy. With two kids that require lots of, shall we say, attention to detail and 3 dogs, one of which is a puppy that doesn’t want to learn to go outside unless it suits her agenda, and a house that…well…I like to say I am domestically challenged. It’s true. I hate to cook. I hate to clean. I hate to do laundry. What do I do, you might ask?

Well, there’s the rub. Nothing.

“Nothing?” you say, in an incredulous voice. “So if you do nothing, why is your life ‘anything but easy’?”

Let me explain. I do nothing and then I start down the slippery slope of depression and all sorts of other nasty things that reach out and grab and my ankles and hands as I slide by, trying to pull me into their deep, dark cavernous holes. And that, my friends, is anything but easy. It’s a hard fought battle that has many steps forward and backward. Exhaustion creeps in, and then all the things around start adding to the nasty things reaching out for me…like the kids, the house, the puppy.

So in an effort to fight off those clinging vines that threaten to choke the life out of me, I have finally come to a place where I realized I can use them pull myself back up out of the pit, just a little. And my first step has been to find a job.

Do you know how hard it is for a woman who has been a stay-at-home mom for 13 years to convince anyone she is worth their time? I’ve been told “Although you have impressive skills, we are looking for more current experience” or “although we have considered your qualifications, we have chosen to offer the position to another candidate.” And then I see the exact same job reposted on job boards the next day. What is wrong with employers these days? Just because there’s a recession going on, and a PLETHORA of overqualified candidates in the job market, doesn’t mean that recruiters should automatically go for the cheap candidate.

Do I cost more? Of course! I’m 44 years old and have LOTS of experience. Is it “current?” That depends on how you look at it. I have no idea the number of hours I have spent in the last 13 years creating documents, fliers, auction booklets, sign up sheets, letters, making phone calls, leading meetings, creating agendas, etc. for the various volunteer roles I have played. Just ask my husband…he can tell you the number of times I have been holed up at my desk for hours, even days on end, in preparation for the start of a new school year or a fundraising event or some other activity. Does that count as current?

My vote is yes. I am worth the money you will pay me. And you will never regret it, because I AM experienced and my experience is far greater and with more depth and meat to it, than that of a first year college graduate, and definitely more than some young person immediately out of high school, whose job experience includes cheerleading and working in the school office.

I’m not knocking high school graduates. There are MANY who are outstanding young people with lots to offer a prospective employer. I am simply saying to those same employers…give Moms a chance, too. You might be surprised at the strength of character, work ethic and flexibility a mom might bring to your company.

So, go ahead. Surprise me. This time, I can take it.

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