Mommy Myth Busting Day 2: Huffing sharpies in a closet- or how to get high accidently, at work

When the high schooler missed his bus, I thought:  “I have it under control.” That was the last time I thought that, today.

I asked the college boy to drive him to school before he left for his 8:30 class.  When High Schooler then, couldn’t find his house-key, I gave him mine. Thinking:  “He’ll be home before me, anyway.” I jumped in the shower, dressed and considered snorting a packet of Starbucks Via, before work.  I refrained, just incase I had to pass a drug test.

The youngest was less than cooperative, this morning. Of course. Between coaxing him to eat and a last-minute lunch change to bringing lunch  (ugh.)  and trying to get my hair dry, I must have lost track of time. I grabbed my keys  had Noah zip his coat in the car and tried to catch the bus.  I thoroughly impressed Noah by knocking over all 4 garbage cans at once as I pulled out of the driveway. (FYI you don’t save time by not clearing the rear window. Picking up garbage: wastes time. )

We didn’t make it.

“I don’t have time for this.” I thought. I decided to save time by not heading home for my purse or phone before taking him to school.  All was fine until I got home and (after picking up the garbage from the street while skating on ice in heels) remembered I’d given my high school son my house key. Epic fail. Locked out.  Garage door opener is acting weird and the keypad won’t work unless it’s above freezing.

It was not above freezing.

I felt defeated.  The wind I’d had in my sails (or maybe it was the coffee I’d sucked down in a rush) whooooshed out in a huff, as tears welled up in my eyes. (Bad mixed metaphor I’m too tired to fix- sorry:P) I was not finished getting ready and the dogs needed to go out before I left for the day.

I didn’t have my purse,  my cell phone or my house key.  My husband is out-of-state.

I could:

1) Break in

2) Break down

To be honest, breaking down was sounding pretty good. As a SAHM, part of me has always been afraid, that even if I absolutely had to work… I couldn’t cut it.  Here I was failing, on Day 2.

“Get a grip. Don’t panic! You can do this!” I told myself, really hoping the neighbors didn’t hear. (Unless they had a key. Which, they don’t.)   I walked around back, to check the patio door. To see if it was locked.  Just in case.

It wasn’t. Typically, I’d have been furious that the house was left un-locked.  Today, I was thankful.

I pushed past the barking like crazy dogs, and finished getting ready.  The clock kept ticking.

9:07 “I should make it if I leave now.”  I thought.

Then, remembered the dogs would need to go out before I left. “Ugh.”

I stood there, tapping my foot like the pee-pee nazi and the beagle refused to go.

Tick toc. 9:08 Getting late!

Explaining that I was late on my second day of work because: “I was waiting for my beagle to pee.” Just didn’t sound professional.  I brought her in and decided I’d have to risk the mess.

9:27 I pulled into work. Made it. Score!

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By 9:45 I met todays task: Organize the Reliable Delivery Dungeon. I mean, the uniform closet. By light of a single, flickering florescent bulb, (good thing I don’t have epilepsy, that strobe effect could have been bad.)

I sorted, took inventory of and hung up a bazillion uniform shirts, jackets, coats and hats. (On nice plastic hangers as Holly, my boss of the moment, made clear the expectation: “No wire hangers!” ) Not in the mood for a beating..(movie reference, sorry)  I complied. 😉

In other words: I counted and put away laundry, all morning.

To be honest, standing alone in that dark closet,I felt a few tears well up. Maybe it was  the emotion of the whole morning rush, or maybe, it was *Sharpie fumes.. but I think it was my disappointment.  This was not what I had in mind. Forget the day-dream of what working might be like.  This was a nightmare.  I wondered if this job had been especially created for me because, you know..  I’m a SAHM, maybe all I’m really capable of is laundry…

Which is when, I remembered the world doesn’t revolve around me. (Funny how I usually think it does.) This was my job for the day, and I was going to do my best at it.  I’d asked to be put through the paces as a working mom, and this was it. So,(for the second time today) I got a grip, then, got down to work.

I finished after a couple of hours. And then, enjoyed throwing the empty boxes over the rail to the floor below. (Hey- it was a highlight of the day.  They made a loverly PLOP on the cement!)

I spent the afternoon: filing, compiling and shuffling, super- top -secret -spy -documents. I’d tell you what they were, but would hate to have to kill you, afterward. (Besides, I’m way too tired.) Ok, so I filed paperwork. Hey! My first promotion! Sweet!  So much better than the dungeon.

As a former homeschool mom, my ABC skillz are par. However— the drivers at Reliable Delivery have  Driver-numbers that most things are filed by. I managed to recall the number system (I feared I’d blocked it along with algebra.) and completed that task as well. (I was a filing maniac!  I rocked the cabinet! With the exception of a small paper-cut  and twice losing the same key to the Truck Driver Records Cabinet…(No clue why that’s in caps.. but since it is a  special- locked filing cabinet -I have no idea why- it just seemed fitting.) it was fairly drama-free. Score another task done for me!

Next, I was introduced to a new hot new friend. He is big and burly and built and has more copy/collate/hole punching skillz than I could ever hope to have. His name is: Mr Minolta Copier.   I know he was was hot- because about that time, I started to feel sweat drip down my back. It only took me 2 tries to figure out how to get Mr Minolta to do his copy, sort, hole -punch magic.  (sorry about letters A and B Kathy.. I had to do them twice.. oopsy) Mr Minolta and I then made 3 copies of the next The New York Times #1 Bestseller. It’s an incredible book… I felt like a ancient scribe..recording history for posterity.

Except I didn’t, and it wasn’t. It was: “The Supply Chain Logistics Terms And Glossary.” Quite possibly, the most boring book I’ve ever seen.

62797853-335ae9683fd294db3822fbf82a3bdd9a.4b6b6c3a-fullSee?  This boring.

And so completed my second day as a working mom.

Or did it?  Because it is currently 7:24 and dinner is still in the oven.   I am still trying to capture the experience in words and I only very recently, finished cleaning the shorkie puddle I found in my bedroom. On the carpet.  With my foot. When I got home. (Hmm I sense a theme… or maybe I sense that  someone would have to be crated, if I went to work every day.)

I am: tired. I just realized I didn’t eat all day, nor stop for a bathroom break, and I am so thirsty I am tempted to drink straight from the faucet. Umm better pace myself. Tomorrow, I’ll eat lunch like a human and drink water when I need to.

FYI: I am convinced, that if I had to inventory and organize uniforms alone, in the dark, for 8 hours a day, I would poke my own eyes out with a sharpie to escape. (Just sayin.. Not a job I would choose…)

And thats what happens on Day 2 of a SAHM becoming a working mom….

Wonder what tomorrow will be like?

Tomorrow I will be working in my friend Kathy’s office. Doing data entry. I am trying not to hyper ventilate over the idea of mucking up the computer system and the universe coming to an end. I’m pretty sure it could. Or not.

I guess we’ll see— tomorrow!

side note: I have spoken to my husband for about 13 minutes total, since Monday. He’s been in California, and now Milwaukee. Between my being busy and the time difference and my schedule.. it’s been rough. If I worked like this every week and he continued to travel.. it would be hard to remember each others voices, let alone faces. UGH.

Dear Lord.. I pray that you’d use these moments to help me learn what it’s like for other moms, and to communicate it well…. I really believe we need each other.. together we could make a better world… amen

*sharpie fumes… yes…but no actual accidental (or purposeful) getting high in the uniform closet… sorry but it was just too funny a line not to use it… 😛

3 thoughts on “Mommy Myth Busting Day 2: Huffing sharpies in a closet- or how to get high accidently, at work

  1. talitha17 says:

    I’ve been a reader for a while, but this is my first time commenting. I had to thank you for doing this experiment. I’m a single mom and I’ve worked full time, constantly, since my daughter was a year old (she’s 10 now). And let me tell you, it’s hard. But you know that. I will encourage you though… it gets better! I had it pretty together only because I’ve made all the same mistakes and then some. You learn from them and you don’t do them again (well, usually!). I’m currently in a season of unemployment which is smashing my long-held myths of life as a SAHM. Not nearly as easy as I thought! I blogged about it here http://me-and-thebug.blogspot.com/2009/12/grass-is-always-greener.html I look forward to your continued adventures!

  2. Oh Talitha! You just made the whole thing worth it!

    Seriously.

    I’m off to read your blog- can’t wait to hear what it’s been like for you to adjust to SAHM ness!

    I hope you’ll consider letting me quote your experience in the book project!

  3. actually, the best filing cabinets are those that are made of tempered steel because they are very strong .

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