By: Cheryl Maguire
When I became a stay-at-home mom I thought, “Finally I can be the boss”. The idea of not answering to anyone or to have the ability to create my own schedule was appealing. Obviously, these delusions of grandeur were construed while I was pregnant. Perhaps the combination of hormones and increased caloric intake (in my case the increase was extreme) clouded my judgment.
It didn’t take long for me to realize who the real boss was in our house. Even when my twins were babies, they let it be known whose schedules I needed to follow. Middle of the night feedings, diaper changes at all hours and incessant crying were all indicators of who was in charge and it was definitely not me.
As I wrote the first paragraph of this story, I felt a presence lurking over my shoulder. It was my nine-year-old daughter (a.k.a the real Boss or President of the household) who was curious as to what her underling was typing. She read the first few sentences (without asking for permission). Then she erupted in laughter.
“You thought you were going to be the boss? That is a good one mom,” said my daughter, providing her unsolicited feedback, as only a boss could.
“Thanks for the helpful insight. If you let me finish writing, I was going to give you full credit for being in charge.”
As you can see, I’m not even allowed to write a story without the chief poking her nose around.
“Carry on,” she said with a wave of her hand as she went in search of another employee (a.k.a. Dad) to chastise.
In addition to the regular household chores I have been assigned, I am responsible for the upkeep of all electrical devices (which there are many). If I lag on this duty, there are repercussions.
“Why didn’t you charge my iPad?” my nine-year-old son (a.k.a. Vice President even though technically his twin sister was born after him, we all answer to her) asked with an angry accusatory tone.
“I think you are capable of plugging a cord into an outlet since you know how to play all of the video games on it,” I said.
“I don’t know where the charger is,” he responded again suggesting that is my job that I’m clearly not completing efficiently.
“Well, I guess it will be difficult to charge it.”
“Can you find it for me?”
Yes, that is exactly how I wish to spend my time, searching the house for a cord to charge a device which he spends so much time using that the battery is drained.
The boss or rather bosses, are real sticklers for time management. If I am running even a minute behind, they are going to notice. When I picked my daughter up from her after school activity, I made the mistake of being a few minutes late (I swear it was less than five minutes).
“Why are you late?” she demanded.
“I am sorry, but it is only two minutes later from when I am supposed to pick you up.”
“I am the last one here. Everyone else’s parents got here on time.”
Wow, the boss is really upset about this one, I better make sure to be on time in the future. I wouldn’t want to have my pay docked.
If I ever complain about my boss’ high expectations to my mother she seems to enjoy responding, “If you think this is bad, just wait until they are teenagers.”
Perhaps that jab is her way of getting back at her boss (a.k.a. me).
One day when they are at college with a heap of dirty laundry, a dead phone and late for class they will realize that I was an exemplary employee. Until then, I better get back to work. The boss is hollering at me, “When’s dinner?”