How I Spent My Summer Vacation Part 1

I apologize to all the McKinneycake fans out there who have missed this blog. I will attempt to rectify the wrongs I committed my neglecting this holy calling and get back into the swing of things. Part 1- The Job That Got Away

My father's family insists that when I was a child, I wanted to be a comedian. I have no memories of such an aspiration. Actress? Check. Writer? Check. District Attorney? I didn't actually know what that was, but if it meant being extremely elegant and standing up for your beliefs and dating a hot man-beast like Catherine Chandler did on my favorite show Beauty and the Beast then yeah, I could be that.

Actress and writer stuck around for a while, but pretty much anytime I realize that a real job would require a) copious amounts of school and b) Working. HARD. then I would quickly lose interest. There was one job I never stopped considering from at least the age of four, however, when I breastfed my dolls and that was being a MOMMY. Preferably to bunches of kids. It's the toughest job I'll ever love and if I had known how colossally bad I could be at it sometimes then maybe I would have run away from that too, but it's tough to argue with your biological urges. I was programmed to procreate.

And so, upon the death of my precious grandfather I dropped out of school for the third time, got married and got pregnant. I quit my $6 an hour job at the classical radio station and I quit my $8 an hour job working as a hospital file clerk and I got into the business of mommying. I had two more babies and hmm...why am I not fulfilled? Well, the reasons for that are far-reaching and something we will go into in a later blog, but there was something important going on.

As I mentioned in another blog, the writing was kind of important. And it was something I ignored for literally years and years of my life. When I started writing again it was a form of redemption for me. And I began to feel things welling up inside me. Ambition! A desire to help support my family!

I have been making a little bit of money writing for the Evansville Courier Westside, and News 4 U, and Evansville Parent and I was immensely grateful, but we've still been living a bit hand to mouth (in the American sense only.) I really wanted to do something else to help out while Hugh finishes his accounting degree.

There was a job I kept hearing about. A job running a website in town, called Job Title? Head Mom.

Now, the idea of having a job running a website seems a bit like a fairy tale, really. Work From Home? A job about being a Mom? That involves the INTERNET (that lovely place I met my husband.) Writing? Promotion? How much could something like that actually pay? Would it pay...anything? But this job kept coming up. From my friend Jenni, who somehow had heard something about it. From a girl named Kara, who I happened to meet while doing a story on the EduKids homeschool co-op. She knew the head mom in Knoxville and had heard rumors of a position in Evansville. I started emailing Knoxville's head mom but I was still incredibly fuzzy on the whole thing. And then my sister-in-law Jondi saw the job posted on Yahoo Hot Jobs. So I pulled a resume out of thin air (how do you do a resume when you haven't worked in 5 years, except for a little free-lance writing?) and sent it in.

And I got called in for an interview.

I nearly wet my pants.

Now, I still knew absolutely nothing about this job. There was a certain amount of money that I wanted to make, and it wasn't much, but I thought it might help out. If the job made that much I'd be happy. And even though I had no idea what this job was really like I decided to go for the gusto.

I went shopping. First I went to Wal-Mart and bought a cute knit top and matching skirt, but ultimately I returned it for something with a bit more panache. So I went to Target where all the truly upscale dames shop, and I found the perfect corporate costume. A blue pin-striped skirt, $5. A white short sleeve button up shirt, $12. Red flats, $9. A red snakeskin bag. $30. And a blue and white polka dot scarf, $7. And I topped off the look with some silver earrings I bought at Kohls the night before. It actually looked smashing. I was complimented on it by someone in line behind me at The Courier Press office, just as I was being given a visitor's badge that read #1. A very good sign.

I'll cut to the chase. I was extremely intimidated, especially when I was told the salary. Let's just say it was considerably more than what my husband makes, and he has a bachelor's degree. It was also techincally 40 hours a week, and while it was work from home, it was definitely WORK. It was not a job. It was a career. Somehow I knew I was in over my head, and I couldn't figure out what I was doing there. Over 50 people applied for this job? They were only interviewing three? I was one of them? Whaaa?

By the second interview I didn't care. I was going to fake it till I made it. That job was mine. If I had to put my kids in public school and daycare (only part-time!), if I had to hire a cleaning lady, whatever, then I would make it work. I would change my clothes. I would tone down my personality. I would find someway to become magically organized, and I would make it work. I had GREAT ideas, and when would I ever find another job that used my talents for writing and working with the public that paid so incredibly well and DIDN'T REQUIRE A COLLEGE DEGREE?

I couldn't stop talking about it...I couldn't stop telling everyone about this incredible job that I was sure to get. The wait was murderous. It was all happening the SAME WEEK my brother was getting married and that was the only thing that managed to keep my mind off the culmination of destiny.

And happened. I was having a manicure, and my sister-in-law's mother got a call on her cell phone. From my husband! It was a message to call back about the job. I did so...with my heart in my throat, yet certain it was good news.

I now know that it was good news. At the time I did not realize this, and I sat, weeping in the beauty parlor and feeling like a fool.

Why did this happen? Why was I led in this direction? There are so many small details that I have left out...maybe even things I have blocked out due to the extreme grief that I was pulled into the weeks after this event. I called my friends constantly, dissolving in tears. I could barely take care of the kids, or cook. I was completely blindsided by this turn of events.

*To Be Continued*