Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Answering "Yes." to "Do You work?"

It's becoming more automatic each time I answer the question "Do you work?"
"Yes." I simply say.
Boy, do I work.
In fact, I'm working right now. My sons are enjoying a nutritious snack that I prepared, and we're discussing what we are going to prepare for dinner.
Because Tuesdays?
They are our Candlelight Dinner Nights. We always have whatever fish is most fresh at our local fishmongers. Today, it is Sea Bass - YUMMMMMMMMMM! I am going to bake it with delicate Asian spices. Served along side will be jasmine rice, a vegetable stir fry (some from our garden!) and dipping sauces.

Back to the "Do You Work?" question. Of course I work. As does every parent who takes care of home and brood. We essentially keep the World Running, in fact. Some of us have to have second jobs to make ends meet. And that's very difficult. As frequently? The huge full-time job of running the home is still left entirely up to them. And that's simply not fair. They then have two full-time jobs. And the spouse who only works the one job and seldom pitches in or offers to help with the home work? And who arrives home and expects to be able to sit and watch tv, be fed and not help with children's homework or bedtime routines? These are the idiots who wonder why the spouse with two jobs is exhausted, angry, resentful and eventually hateful. Feeling underappreciated and overworked will do that to you. Almost with certainty.

So, to the PTA President (in Oldest's class) who asked "Do you work?" with a gleam in her eye today, sure she was going to guilt trip me into never-ending school servitude at the school; I answered simply "Yes. Long hours. It is sometimes exhausting." and left it at that.

Because, you see, I have filled our calendar until the end of December with all our family's important dates:

Every afternoon the boys have school. Those times went in first.
Mondays/Wednesdays/Fridays are club mornings, when we will swim in the warm therapy pool, or the children will go to daycare while I workout or just read for 2 hours
Tuesdays or Thursday are bi-weekly Excursion mornings - so much to do and see here! The alternating Tue/Thur are Do-Nothing mornings. Lay around, read, play, whatever.
Mon/Tue/Thur afternoons are TaeKwonDo/portable DVD movie for youngest/reading for me
Wed/Fri afternoons are therapy/portable DVD movie for oldest/reading for me
Evenings? They are scheduled for game nights/restaurant nights/babysitting nights.

We are busy. Being a family. With our extended family and friends.

This new scheduling, actually writing down what I wish we were doing so it will actually happen for a change, is giving me a sense of peace and power. There is not much room in our lives for much more.

Vocalizing YES I WORK is more powerful than I ever knew.


My float said...

Good for you Vickee. Making a family, keeping it together, making sure it works for everyone involved, keeping them nutrionally fed and watered and healthy - that is damn hard work.

The more I struggle with my jobs and looking after my son full-time, the less I enjoy my life. And what is the point of that? I think you're brave and honest, and people should just back right off. Your schedule sounds fantastic. It's a great balance.

Liz said...

I've always thought that to be a kind of dumb question. Kids are hard work, which is probably why I'm afraid to have any.

Carolyn said...

Ah, the spouse who wants to sit on his arse while you're frantically running around and then says, "You never have time for me anymore."

Fucking, duh!

Lazy cow said...

I'm borrowing that response, if you don't mind. Although, part of me always wants to say : Hell no, I don't work, I just sit on the couch reading and eating cake all day. Just to see the response I get.

PJ said...

That's brilliant! I wish I would have thought of that when my kids were young. Although now, at this time in my life, I take great pleasure in saying no, I don't work, I raised my kids and now I'm spending time on me.

Fortunately, I have been blessed with a man who always pitches in with the household stuff.

Miz S said...

I totally love your response to the PTA president. Good going, sister!

Also, the schedule thing? Great idea. I function so much better with structure.

Liz said...

carolyn- LOL