Thursday, February 26, 2009

A Sense of Accomplishment

When my husband was first laid off, people offered their condolences and their advice: "You'll need to cut back and unfortunately the cleaning lady will be the first to go." Looking back, I'm glad I didn't fire her. She's been a part of our family for as long as I can remember and she does an exceptional job. I'm afraid my kids and my husband would have sorely missed her. Truth be told, I am not only a trophy wife, I am the cleaning lady.

(The second thing I was advised to slash from the household budget was the yard man. Again, that would have been difficult as the yard man is also the father of my children. And for the record, that man can cultivate a lawn like nobody's business.)

But back to the cleaning lady thing....I must admit, my house is usually pretty tidy as I abhor clutter. But today you can literally eat off of the floors. In fact, I may serve the next meal right on the hardwoods. (note to self: do not make soup for dinner). I spent the entire day dusting, scrubbing toilets, vacuuming up dust bunnies (the one under my bed was the size of a small child) and cleaning the tile floor in my downstairs bathroom with a toothbrush. I changed the sheets on 3 beds, I did 4 loads of laundry, I put together the makings of an exquisite shrimp dinner AND I prepared chocolate covered strawberries for dessert.

I tell you this not because I am looking for kudos, but because I delight in my sense of accomplishment.

As pathetic as it sounds, I don't always get to experience that feeling. My kids are at the age where I no longer help them achieve milestones. My daughter has been potty trained for 10 years, my son mastered his r's, both kids can tie their own shoes and they look both ways before crossing the street. The only thing I can really help them with these days is their homework, and who am I kidding...I have great difficulty with my son's 3rd grade math....and he knows it...and so very rarely asks for help. Needless to say, when I feel a sense of accomplishment, I relish in it.

The beauty of cleaning my house is that it's instant gratification. One minute there is an orange ring around the toilet bowl, the next it is gone. Ahhh, it's the simple things. My desire to feel that sense of accomplishment is the reason I've been thinking about rejoining the workforce. (And yes, I realize that my timing is impeccable.) I've been thinking about going back to work since my son was in 1st grade; he's now in's time. I'm not looking to become a CEO, I just want a part time gig that gives me a sense of accomplishment and brings in a little spending money. And who knows, maybe if I make enough money, I can outsource the cleaning. (bite your tongue - that will
never happen)

I blogged about my desire to go back to work in today's online Charlotte Observer. Click
here to read it.

And...I'm very happy to report that I have accepted a part part part
part time gig with a very talented speaker/author/consultant. He's not famous, yet, but when I get done promoting his services he will be. You'll want to book him for your next speaking engagement. But you'll have to go through me to do so...and I can just imagine the sense of accomplishment that it will bring me when I help grow his business. And I bet it beats the feeling of satisfaction that comes with vacuuming up a killer dust bunny.

Wish me luck....


jj said...

Love your blog! After six years of being a stay at home mom I am back in the work force with a great job. I listed many of my volunteer jobs and my accomplishments in raising two boys in my cover letter to my employeer. I find that most people today value the work of the stay at home mom I guess they just don't blog about it. My advice to all those stay at home Moms going back to work outside the home, Don't do it! I'm kidding of course! Network, network, network!

Karen said...

You are going to have a fabulous Phase 2 career with many accomplishments and rewards, but trust me: there are few things that beat the satisfaction of vacumming up a giant dust bunny.

Wiles Family said...

That picture you put up for this article is hilarious! I never would have thought of that!

Wiles Family said...

That sounds like a lot of work that you have been doing lately! That dust bunny the size of a small child sounds like it would have been quite the adventure to suck up from under your bed...