I was at a friend's party and I got the "So what do you do?" question. The answer used to be easy "Well I am a director at an ad agency blah, blah, blah" I would rattle off the name of my agency and the clients I worked for, wait for the usual, suitably impressed response and move on. Now the question is much more loaded "What do I do?"
Well I take care of a crazy, uber-active 2 year old, trying to make sure he doesn't turn into a serial killer, or wife abuser. I help my husband in his business, I mean someone has to make money around here.. :P and I am in the midst of launching my own business all while trying to maintain a semi-clean home and make edible dinner creations. How does one fit that into a witty one liner remark at a dinner party?
The answer is you don't or at least I didn't know how to and merely mumbled "Well, you know I am taking some time to take care of Max..." and slunk away back to the bar. What the hell kind of answer was that? Why was I so ashamed of taking this detour off the corporate ladder and do the hardest thing I have ever done in my whole life? I feel like I became the exact kind of woman I used to judge. The stereotypical career woman who couldn't hack the big leagues once they became a mom. Well the jokes on me, who would have thunk I would become one of them?
I have been thinking about this all weekend and I still don't have an answer. On the one hand, the Stay at Home mom is revered by society as the solution to all the ills in children but the answer I got in return at the party was a glazed-eyed "Great, great, most important job in the world.." as they scanned the room for someone more interesting-slash-important-slash helpful to their career.
Why is the choice we make never the right one?
Why are working moms made to feel that they are short-changing their children while Stay at Home moms feel like they "wasted" their education and "What kind of example are you setting for your sons & daughters anyways?"
My short answer to this if Max were to ask is that I want to show him that you only get to live once and that you should live with no regrets and based on your rules not somebody else's and that being happy is always more important than being rich.
I think that's enough for now, right? I mean he is only 2. Perhaps we should focus on the difference between a circle and a square for now and save the hard stuff for say 4 years old.