Right about the time my daughter was born, I
quit my job. That hadn't been the plan. It was a good, stable job at a company
I had been with for four years. But holding her in my arms for the first time, I
knew I couldn't return to a standard 9 to 5. So, I quit and began actively
pursuing this dream of writing that I've had all my life; determined to do
whatever it took to have the flexibility in parenting that I was yearning for.
It was the best decision I have ever made.
But I still think about it sometimes, even two
years later. If I ever did decide to take on a "real job" again, what would I
want to do? And what would I be qualified for at this point?
It turns out … a whole lot. In fact, I came up
with a long list of jobs parenting a toddler has prepared me for.
1. Storm Chaser
I often feel as though I am chasing my daughter from
one tornado to the next in terms of the messes she makes. She touches
down, and I meet her at the eye of the storm for cleanup. But my job is never
done, because there is always another tornado sighting to catch up to, which
usually becomes evident just as I am finishing up at the last one.
Calming down those raging toddler emotions is no joke,
and I do it all without the use of sedatives. (At least, for her, but if
you've got something to offer me, I'm all ears.)
My ability to hide veggies in every meal she eats is
nothing short of magic.
There is no greater on the job training for any number of careers than raising up a toddler and getting out alive.
My little girl legitimately sticks her feet in my face
and requests that I rub them. On the daily. I don't know where she got that
from, but it's possible I comply more than I should. Mostly because those
little feet of hers are still pretty delectable.
5. Cruise Director
Not only am I the entertainment, but I am also tasked
with ensuring we remain on schedule and that everyone on board knows where the
life jackets are located.
6. Crisis Negotiator
Holy crap, this kid is starting to bargain about
everything! It doesn't matter what we're doing, she's got a deal she wants to
make—and she is testing my own negotiation powers every step of the way. But
when things get heated and she starts making demands, I am proud to report that
Mommy still wins. Usually.
7. Personal Shopper
I officially spend way more money on her adorable
clothes than on anything in my own closet, and I have really developed a skill
for eye-balling apparel items and knowing whether or not they would work for my daughter.
8. Disney Closed Caption
Really, with the
number of times she has made me watch some of the same movies again and again,
I could probably write those captions from memory. Just send us screener
copies. I'll have the captions written up in a few days flat.
9. Stand-up Comedian
My daughter thinks I'm the funniest person she has ever
met. Seriously. Just ask her.
10. Retirement Home Orderly
I sincerely convinced myself that once the potty
training was done, I would be done wiping butts—yet here I am. Still wiping
that little tush after every crap. When does it end?!?
11. Jailhouse Dentist
On the advice of her pediatric dentist, I floss her teeth once a
day and brush them twice. But not always without incident. In fact, I imagine
she responds to my efforts about as well as any hostile prisoner might.
Because have you ever gotten a bunch of toddlers together for a
play date? If I weren't there making the calls on toy disputes and pushing
infractions, things would definitely get out of hand. Fast.
Who? Me? Alright, fine. You've got me. I chase my child around
with a camera like it's my job or something. Say, "Cheese!"
So have no fear, mommies! Whether you are preparing for a return
to the workforce, or have just come to realize that you hate your current job, your options really are limitless. In fact, I would argue that there is no
greater on the job training for any number of careers than raising up a toddler
and getting out alive.