I thought the struggle to find a great job was difficult in my twenties, fresh out of college. However, it is nothing compared to the struggle I am now encountering as a mom who took the last 5 years off to stay home with her child.
I often like to make light of the situation in my numerous versions of my cover letter, stating that I have a plethora of job titles not able to be placed on my resume or that I have been the Director of the Future Investments division of a non-profit, but the truth is...nobody cares. There is little empathy for my situation and I have accepted that. I took on parenthood fully knowledgeable of its responsibilities. It's not like I took on the task of raising my child myself on a daily basis because it would look good on my resume.
Unfortunately, I've been told for the past 5 years that the work I'm doing is important, though unappreciated; the hardest job in the world. Does that translate over to my resume? No, it does not. Instead, I have a rather significant gap in my work history that stands out more than my ability to take on any job at a moment's notice without a peep of discontent, a passion for doing the hard thing because it's also the right thing, and a pleasant smile and attitude that only requires refueling via coffee.
The years I spent plugging away in corporate headquarters or photography studios or law offices pales in comparison to the past 5 years I spent molding an infant into an intelligent, confident young man that I'm proud to send out in the world. I sacrificed my own success in the short term in order to build him up into a future success for the world that we need created around us. I built a future leader. I created this little guy with my own DNA, blood, sweat, and tears, and I am confident he will do big things in this world.
We need people like this! We need kids who can someday be referred to as ladies and gentlemen. We need boys who understand the words "No" and "Stop" to mean that whatever is going on in that moment needs to end immediately, whether it be sharing snacks or holding hands. We need leaders who don't falter in their decisions, and take the position of others not like them into consideration when making those choices. We need adults who treat the ones who seemingly have nothing to offer them with the utmost respect despite that difference. We need men who are respected for their accomplishments and the way they treat others as opposed to the attractiveness of the person they have relations with.
It has been my honor and my privilege to take my job as my son's mother so seriously. However, the only way I have found this position to work in my favor is in my writing. So I continue to write. I blog. I share my experiences. I author novels. And much like the experience I've had in raising my son, this too is me taking a big chance right now, hoping that there is eventually a future payoff because of my writing. In doing so, I hope my son can be proud of what his mother has done to raise him into a responsible, functioning member of society. Until then, I will continue nurturing his creative, scientific mind and love of the outdoors with plenty of rocky hikes and passionate conversation.
What are you doing today to ensure your child grows up into an adult you will undoubtedly be proud of?