" So what do you do?", is a question almost everyone asks a person when people meet for the first time. I cringe everytime I'm asked the dreaded inqusition. "I'm a full time mom", I reply. "Oh", is usually the reaction I get. Then I usualy go on to say that I have a child, six years old, with a disability and that takes up alot of my time. "Ahhhhh", with a more understanding tone, is the common reply. Then as if I have nothing else to contribute, the conversation is over, and again I feel worthless. After much praying and seeking God, asking Him, "Is this all I'm ever going to be Lord?", He's let me know in no uncertain terms, that my job is the most important one in the world. So I put my feelings of unworthiness upon His alter and stand tall. I havent always been " just a mom". I've had my own business as a manicurist, I've been an EMT a CNA and worked drawing blood at our local hospital. I've been a full time college student with a GPA of 4.0, while single, with two children to raise. I've done alot of things and been alot of places, and that's what people inevitibally want to hear about. I have to say that being "just a mom" has been the hardest job I've ever had. I always have to remind myself how lucky I am that I get to raise my youngest child and that most likely most working moms secretly wish that they could do the same.I am certainly more stressed out and getting more grey hair every day, but at the end of the day when all is quiet, which is usually around 10:00 pm, I am glad that I am one of the lucky ones, that gets to raise her children herself. I don't have to worry about "daycare disasters" or feel guilty that I haven't been there for my kids. Oh, don't get me wrong I have had to do that in my life, as my kids ages are spread out. I have a 20 year old, a 15 year old and a 6 year old, all boys. Situations have changed since my two oldest were young and I did have to work to make ends meet. Although, there are plenty of days I wish I could go to work just to get away, Im grateful I'm here at home waiting for them when they get home from school. You see,years ago, before my youngest was born, I was an EMT in Boulder Colorado. I worked 24 hour shifts and didn't get to see my kids very often, due to the differences in our schedules. Sometimes I would'nt see them for two days. My husband was there in the evenings and early mornings before he went to work, but all I got were second hand accounts of what was going on in my kids lives. I missed them , but I was focused on my almighty "career" and after all, I was helping people wasnt I? Well, one April morning I called in sick with the flu. Yes , I really was bedridden and miserable. As I turned on the television to pass time, nothing was on the tube except news of multiple shootings at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, just a few short miles from where I worked. As I watched in horror as the story unfolded before my very eyes, my pager started to beep.beep,beep. I was being paged to come work in Littleton at the High School I was watching on television. They were calling in everyone from the surrounding areas to come and help. I cried as I called the station to tell them I was very sick and coulnd'nt make it to help. I don't know if I cried with releif or at the need to go and contribute to the awesome care everyone that was there was putting forth. All I know is that watching helplessly from my sick bed, changed my entire life. As the days went on and I recovered from my sickness, I could'nt recover from the thoughts of my own children. Not that at any time they could go to school and get shot or killed, because you take that chance everytime they walk out your door, but the chance that they could be at home making bombs and plans of they're own to take the lives of fellow classmates. The killers were from upscale "normal" families, that both parents worked to support thier upscale lifestyles. No judjment here as I was doing the same thing. So is everyone else, I thought. At the horror of that thought, I wrestled with the idea of giving up my career and the extra paycheck, to be home with my kids. I got disappointed looks and comments from everyone in my life that thought it was so "cool" to be an EMT. Ultimately, I did decide to give it up and I've never regretted it. I was there to send my kids off to school and there when they got home. I also decided that it was not only my "right" as a parent but my duty to check backpacks and search their room whenever I felt like it. The boys from Columbine who killed teachers and students alike, had all their weapons and bombs sitting right out in plain veiw, in their rooms. Mom and Dad thought their children deserved their privacy. Well that went out the window in my house and from there on out I was on top of everything. The oldest did'nt like it so well ,but he has turned out to be a responsible member of society and the other two well on their way to not only being responsible, but servants of God. What more can you ask for? God has shown me on several occasions that I did the right thing, but I've learned numerous lessons from my kids on being an adult. Yes, weve had to give up alot of things in life, but theres nothing better than knowing what your kids are up to and where they are. For that I'm willing to live a simple life. Who says Im "just a mom", NOT ME!
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