Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The answer

"So you don't work?"

I am standing in the grocery line, watching my purchases be rung up while simultaneously keeping an eye on my kids in the cart when I am asked this question. I had been making small talk with the cashier.

I look up at her and wonder what to say.

Let's see.

So far today I have:

Gotten up at 6 AM

made a bottle

fed the dog

put in a load of laundry

emptied the dishwashed

gotten two children dressed

brushed three sets of teeth

scrubbed the countertops and kitchen sink

fed the kids breakfast

pinned a dress together, serged the seams

cleaned up breakfast

scrubbed the table

wrangled the kids into the playroom

brushed the dog

vaccuumed and mopped the floors

scrubbed the kids tub and sinks

settled 2.5 million toy disputes

broke up a fight over legos

planned dinner


applied makeup while texting friends

answered e-mail

clipped coupons

made a grocery list while comparing coupons to grocery website

switched laundry

scrubbed toilets

kissed a boo boo

wrangled both kids into the car

got both kids out of the car and into the grocery cart

Held Sam and kept an eye on Lily while disenfecting cart

kept two kids from screaming through the grocery store

matched up coupons to purchases while keeping track of sippy cups, cookies, and grocery list

and successfully gotten to the checkout.

And it's only noon.

So, do I work?


Do I love?


So which is it? Work or love?

Both. But it can't be boxed into such small words. With every mundane task I an caring for some aspect of my family's life. With every shirt washed folded and put away, I am giving my family something clean to wear. With every meal made, I am nourishing them. With every stroke of the vaccum I am making their world cleaner. With every clipped coupon I am putting money into our bank account. With every dress/blanket/bag/bow created I am adding potential income to our budget.

So what is the definition of work? A paycheck? Or is it something more? Is it that a noon on a day like any other of my life I can look at the grocery cashier and say-

"No, I don't work outside the home. And I love my job."